Review of the Book 'In Pursuit of the Ph.D.'
Ehrenberg, Ronald G.
[Excerpt] When William Bowen, the President of the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation (formerly the President of Princeton University), and Neil Rudenstine, the President of Harvard University (formerly Executive Vice President of Mellon), combine to write a book on doctoral study in the arts and sciences, the academic profession must take notice. And well it should. Building on Bowen and Julie Ann Sosa's (1989) predictions of forthcoming shortages of Ph.D.'s in the arts and sciences, In Pursuit of the Ph.D. provides a detailed analysis of the propensity of American college graduates to enter doctoral programs in the arts and sciences and of doctoral students' completion rates and times-to-degree. Bowen and Rudenstine also carefully analyze the role that labor market characteristics, financial support patterns, institutional characteristics, and graduate program policies play in influencing these outcomes. Finally, they both implicitly and explicitly lay out an agenda for future research. In Pursuit is thus a "must read" for faculty and administrators involved in graduate education and for economists interested in higher education and academic labor supply issues.
higher education; doctoral study; completion rates; graduate programs; academic labor supply
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