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Camilla Cavendish’s column “Universities are pleading for a bailout to paper over their failures” (April 4) is an example of the worst kind of liquidationism, levering resentments against the sector as an excuse to destroy jobs and perhaps whole institutions. It is also supremely silly: unlike the flights, meals out and haircuts that are no longer happening in the locked-down economy, demand for higher education will almost certainly simply back up, meaning that losses incurred in the coming academic year would be followed by an overwhelming surge later.

If we destroy sector capacity in the coming months, who will teach the outsized cohort that will arrive soon after? Dare I say that universities are our best defence against this kind of lazy thinking?

Dr Jonathan Hopkin
Associate Professor,
Dept of Government,
London School of Economics, UK

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