Top Ten Trends

for Higher Education in the Next Ten Years

30-60 min keynote presentation (See “The Road Ahead” for longer versions)

As colleges and universities accelerate toward an uncertain future, there are nonetheless clear signs that the road ahead will be congested with local and global competition, that urbanization and immigration patterns will increasingly reroute student traffic to a handful of major metropolitan centres, that government funding will no longer fuel the status quo, and that new technologies and pedagogical approaches will leave many feeling like they are no longer in the driver’s seat. The majority of Canadian institutions will face “peak campus” by 2030, and will need to serve an increasingly diverse array of students with rising expectations for personalized, flexible, unbundled and interdisciplinary educational options, career-relevant programs, work-integrated learning experiences, and accommodations and supports for special needs.  Libraries, textbooks, classroom instruction, student evaluation and credentials themselves are under increasing pressure to evolve, and many institutions have already shifted into the fast lane to explore the potential of new technologies and business strategies. Institutions that aim to survive and thrive in a rapidly-changing landscape will need to clarify their destination, and map their own unique route to get there – but no matter the route, they will need to take into account the continually changing warning signs of demographic, economic, political, social, and technological changes on the road ahead.

Canada is lucky to have Ken Steele, one of the most knowledgeable and trusted analysts of the remarkable changes we are seeing in PSE in Canada. Never one to pull punches he nevertheless delivers difficult news and uncomfortable insights in a convincing yet low key and gentle manner.

Dr. Alan Shaver, President & Vice-Chancellor, Thompson Rivers University

Ken Steele is Canada’s leading higher education monitor and futurist. He co-founded Academica Group, created the Academica Top Ten, manages Eduvation Inc, co-authored Canada’s first book on enrolment management, and hosts a weekly webcast, Ten with Ken, that reaches thousands of subscribers on a dozen platforms. Ken brings his unique perspective and insight to a broad range of audiences, from faculty and instructors, boards and senior administration, to information technology staff, concerned parents, and Canada’s most powerful corporate CEOs.

In this rapid-fire, visual and dynamic keynote, Ken synthesizes a vast array of up-to-the-moment research data, trends, news and forecasts to provide a high-level summary of the ten most important trends for your audience to consider. The content of the presentation is being continually updated, and will be customized for your region, institution, audience and objectives for the day.  (Ken will schedule a one-hour call with your leadership, and will review your most recent institutional strategic plan, to help focus the presentation for your needs.)


Ideal Audiences

  • Board Retreats
  • Executive Teams
  • Academic Retreats
  • Deans & Directors
  • SEM Committees
  • Campus PD
  • Conference Keynotes
  • Launch for Strategic Plan Renewal

Optional Extras

  • You might consider 2 or 3 presentations, possibly for a variety of audiences, drawn from Ken’s hot topics.

Related Resources:

These articles and white papers reflect some of Ken’s ideas, and could potentially be used as pre-reading for workshop participants:

Here are some relevant episodes of 10K, for a sense of Ken’s approach and as potential examples to share with participants in advance:


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