NGDLI and strategic governance: An action framework for boards and senior higher education leaders

June 2022

How should higher education leaders think about future technology needs in the context of student access and success?


This paper, part of the Next-Gen Digital Learning Infrastructure (NGDLI) project, seeks to help college and university presidents, boards and board leaders seize post-pandemic opportunities to re-envision the digital future of their institutions. It challenges leaders to rethink approaches to governance in today’s postsecondary learning environment, maximizing the current window of opportunity for change.

Key Insights
The future of postsecondary learning will be increasingly digital and hybrid, combining in-person and online elements and creating greater flexibility related to place and time.
The pandemic expanded the market for technologies and services designed to improve academic and administrative functions and the learner experience.
Non-degree, certificate and microcredential programs, as well as non-institutional providers, will continue to grow in response to many learners’ expanding preference for alternatives to traditional degree programs.
Ongoing technological and economic change means individuals will need more frequent, more accessible and more affordable high-quality learning engagements across a longer span of their lives.

The NGDLI was launched in 2021 to better understand the forces and factors defining the future of the postsecondary learning enterprise. The study’s authors conducted a nationwide survey of college and university presidents, interviews with numerous higher education experts and an analysis of key trends.

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