Will China become the global leader in higher education in the 21st century? The modern research university was born in 19th century Germany; during the 20th, the United States took the lead. In his book Empires of Ideas, William C. Kirby argues that Chinese universities are among the most innovative educational centers in the world. Professor Kirby examines the successes of several leading universities in Germany and the United States, and compares them to three Chinese universities aspiring to become world-class institutions that can compete with the best that United States and Europe have to offer.
In an interview conducted on August 16, 2022, William C. Kirby examines the rise of the modern research university and liberal education, and the challenges facing higher education institutions in China, the United States, and Germany.