The Economy Goes to College: The Hidden Promise of Higher Education in the Post-Industrial Service Economy analyzes long-term changes in how goods and services are produced. The report finds that college-educated workers now produce more than half of the nation’s annual economic value.

Key Findings


Agricultural output over the past 200 years has increased by at least 20 times per worker.


College-intensive business services have replaced manufacturing as the U.S. economy’s largest industry cluster.


Increasing wealth from productivity growth has empowered consumers to demand more sophisticated goods and services.


The economy has moved from mass productions of standardized good to mass customization of goods and services.

Full Report

The Economy Goes to College: The Hidden Promise of Higher Education in the Post-Industrial Service Economy analyzes long-term changes in how goods and services are produced. These shifts have created millions of high-skill professional jobs and increased the economic value of obtaining a college degree.

The report finds that college-educated workers now produce more than half of the nation’s annual economic value. The findings undermine the fear that good manufacturing jobs of the past are being replaced with low-paid, dead-end service jobs.