So how is new UC Berkeley Chancellor Nicholas Dirks doing, anyway?
As you may or may not remember, I think that the historic tasks of a UC Berkeley Chancellor today are three: two financial (with concomitant implications for the deployment of Berkeley's resources) and the third technological. The financial tasks are:
- to rebalance Berkeley's finances in this post-Clark Kerr era by (partially) transforming it into a finishing school for the superrich of Asia.
- to rebalance Berkeley's enrollment by creating a system and which nobody who should be going to Berkeley feels that they cannot afford it or cannot risk it, and yet in which it is rich Berkeley graduates rather than the poorer median taxpayers of California who bear the financial burden of supporting the public university.
The technological task is:
- to figure out how to use, rather than to misuse, abuse, or not use the new educational technologies made feasible by our ongoing revolutions in information and telecommunications.
And, of course, the chancellor must make progress via the Sisyphean process of bureaucratic persuasion and marginal budget reallocation.