1. When today’s high-school seniors are asked what they plan to do after graduation, most say that they intend to get bachelor ’s degree. They have been told that their generation has only on
e way to win by getting at least a bachelor ’s degree, in the hope that it will eventually lead to a professional job. In a recent survey of high-school seniors conducted by the National Center for Education Statistics, 85per cent of the respondents said they planned to get bachelor ’s degree. And, although 20years ago only 45 percent of high-school graduates went on to college, today 68 percent actually matriculate 注册,with the majority enrolling in four-year or two-year programs designed to allow them to transfer to four-year institutions. According to conventional wisdom, the rapid rise in the number of students attending college is cause for national celebration. But our research suggests that, instead it may be cause for national concern. Why? Because for many young people, the one way to win paradigm 例子 is not realistic, given their academic talents and the labor-market projections, Students ranking below the top third of their high-school graduating class too often fail to earn a bachelor ’s degree if they enroll in college. The cost of such failure-in both dollars and unmet expectations is rising and beginning to erode public confidence in our system of higher education. 2. A small family-owned company, Eisai, was one of the original manufactures of vitamin E, and it maintained a strong research commitment to natural pharmaceuticals. Over the years, it developed drugs for the treatment of cardiovascular, respiratory, and neurological diseases. The company experienced steady. Modest growth, and in 1922 sales reached 197 billion yen and profits approached 13 billion yen. Although it was the sixth-largest Japanese pharmaceutical company. Eisai was a relatively small player in an industry in which global competition was increasing while growth in the domestic market was slowing down. In 1993, Haruo Naito took over as president from his father. Before that, he had chaired Eisai’s five-year strategic planning committee. During that time, he had become convinced that the company’s focus on the discovery and manufacture of pharmaceuticals was not sustainable for long-term growth against large, global competitors. Two years after becoming president, Naito formulated a radical new vision for Eisai that he called Human Health Care. It extended the company’s focus from manufacturing drug treatments or specific illness to improving the overall quality of life. To accomplish that mission. Eisai developed a wide array of new products. And that, In turn, would require broad involvement and commitment. He encouraged innovative activity and created an environment in which employees’ efforts would be accepted and rewarded. Soon there were proposals for 130 additional HHC projects and by the end of 1996. 73Projects were under way. Now, the company has moved from sixth to fifth place in the Japanese domestic pharmaceutical industry, and Eisai’s customers and competitors view the company as a leader in health care. 3. Today it can be said that wheels run America. The four rubber tires of the automobile move America through work and pay. Wheels spin, and people drive off to their jobs. Tires turn, and people shop for the week’s food at the big supermarket down the highway. Hubcaps whirl, and the whole family spends a day at the lake. Each year more wheels crowd the highways a 110 million new cars roll out of the factories. One out of every six Americans works at assembling cars. Driving trucks, building roads, or pumping gas, America without cars? It’s unthinkable. But even though the majority of Americans would find it hard to imagine what life would be like without a car, some have begun to realize that the automobile is a mixed blessing. Traffic
accidents are increasing steadily, and large cities are plagued by traffic congestion, Worst of all, perhaps, is the air pollution caused by the internal-combustion engine. Every car engine burns hundreds of gallons of fuel each year and pumps hundreds of pounds of carbon monoxide and other gases into the air. These gases are one source of the smog that hangs over large cities. Some of these gases are poisonous and dangerous to one’s health, especially for someone with a weak heart or a respiratory disease. One answer to the problem of air pollution is to build a car that does not pollute. That’s what several major automobile manufacturers are crying to do. But building a clean car is easier said than done. So far, progress has been slow. Another solution is to eliminate car fume altogether by getting rid of the internal-combustion engine. Inventors are now working on turbine-powered cars, as well as on cars powered by steam and electricity. But most of us won’t be driving cars run on batteries or boiling water for a while yet. Many auto makers believe that it will take years to develop practical models that are powered by electricity or steam. 4. Children are now leaving home in late adolescence-an earlier age than in the past. Adolescents are no longer involved in making an economic contribution to the family. In fact, their major economic impact is as consumers; therefore, the family has little reason to keep the child home as an economic contribution. It is becoming increasingly common for young people to leave home for college or to live with someone else when they become employed. Not only do families have fewer children but they have them in school and out of the home at younger ages than in the past. The most surprising finding with regard to children show a negative impact on marriage due to children. There has been much evidence that children contribute to greater conflict an uncertainty in a marriage. Studies show that general life satisfaction is highest for people when they are young, married, and child less. Other studies show that American couples with children at home tend to have lower marital satisfaction than those without children. For both men and women, reports happiness and satisfaction drop and don’t rise again until the children are grown and about to leave the nest. 5. In the world’s rich countries, when you retire at 65 you can expect to live, on average, for another 15 or 20 years. A hundred years ago you would, on average, have been already dead. The late 20th century has brought to many the ultimate gift, the luxury of aging. But like any luxury, aging is expensive. Governments are fretting about the cost already; but they also know that far worse is to come; Over the next 30 or 40 years, the demographic changes of longer lives and fewer births will force most countries to rethink in fundamental ways their arrangements for paying for and looking after older people. In 1990 18% of people in OECD countries were aged over 60. By 2030 that figure will have risen to over 30%. The share of the oldest old those over 80. Now around 3%, is set to double. The vast majority of these older people will be consumers, not producers. Thanks to state transfers, being old in developed countries mostly no longer means being poor. The old people will expect decent pensions to live on; they will make heavy demands on medical services; and some will need expensive nursing care. Yet while their numbers are expanding fast, numbers of people at work-who will have to foot the bill-will stay much the same, So each worker will have to carry a much heavier burden. Mass survival to a ripe old age will not be confined to rich countries. Most developing countries, whose populations are now much younger than the developed world’s are starting to age fast.