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Trends Outside Higher Education | Fall 2021

Cover (Trends Outside Higher Education | Fall 2021)

From the ongoing COVID–19 pandemic to the impacts of climate change, colleges and universities continue to face an environment that is volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous—VUCA. Learn the key trends and movements that might become our “new normal.” This issue broadly explores trends outside of higher education.

We’ve organized Trends using STEEP:



  • Social: How people think, behave, and interact, including beliefs, values, culture, and lifestyle

  • Technology: How people use technology (including hardware and software), how society relies on technology, and how technology affects society

  • Economic: Macro- or microeconomics, including global trends, anything related to jobs and skills needed for jobs, and industry shifts

  • Environmental: Our external surroundings, including sustainability and our evolving workplaces, cities, and living spaces

  • Political: Public policy, governmental systems, the people within them, and the effects of government decisions on our citizens and communities



Each trend includes a brief trend summary, a footnoted source, and discussion questions to help you analyze and act on the trend.

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