Thursday, September 25, 2014

The Public Provision of Private Goods

Matt Nolan on the public funding of tertiary education. Note the strong EE themes.

My thoughts? Responsible citizenship is a public good. Job skills are a private good. I'm more put off by the public provision of a private good than I am by the public funding of a private good. Price signals are terribly important to accurately meter consumption.

I'd also be warm to the idea of public schools fulfilling their charter to produce responsible constituents. I'm not convinced this is the case. No incentives, little accountability. It's hard to measure good citizenship, harder yet to teach to a hazy, ill-defined metric. More's the pity.

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Do you have suggestions on where we could find more examples of this phenomenon?