Advancing the public purposes of higher education is both more important – and more difficult – than ever before. AHEAD contributes to this outcome by helping policymakers, college and university administrators, and researchers understand the need to advance the public purposes of higher education and the best ways to achieve this goal. AHEAD leads the conversation by convening key stakeholders to engage in critical but difficult conversations about these issues, with the goal of identifying and disseminating information about innovative and productive solutions.

What's AHEAD: Key Trends in Higher Education

Visit the What's AHEAD page.

In the News

Visit the Press Coverage page.

Lectures & Seminars

The Attainment Agenda: State Policy Leadership in Higher Education 

Next Wednesday, September 17, starting at 4:30 PM in JMHH 340, Penn Wharton PPI is co-hosting an event with the Alliance for Higher Education and Democracy, and the Institute for Research on Higher Education.  The event is a roundtable discussion featuring faculty from across the University: Laura Perna and Joni Finney from GSE, Wendell Pritchett from Penn Law, and Laura Wolf-Powers from Penn Design, all of whom will be examining issues in state policy and leadership affecting higher education affordability and access.  Our future economic and social prosperity depends on raising the level of higher education degree attainment in America.  Come out and hear what these experts have to say about it! To register, visit:

"China's Rising Research Universities: A New Era of Global Ambition" 
Professor Robert A. Rhoads 
University of California Los Angeles
Tuesday September 23, 2014
11 am - 12:30 pm
HED Conference room, 3819 Chestnut Street

Convenings & Roundtables

Coming soon

Penn AHEAD Director Testifies Before Congress

Dr. Laura Perna testified in front of the US Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions on July 24, 2014 on states' role in higher education. Click here to view the video of her testimony.