In this article, authors Sandy Baum and Michael McPherson discuss public institutions and their places in society. They argue that public institutions aren’t really public in nature and I think there is merit to this. For a good to be public, it must be nonexcludable and nonrival, but college institutions (both public and private) are both excludable and rival. Colleges only accept a certain amount of students, so they’re rival and only people who can pay (whether out-of-pocket, loans, etc) can go to the school. Are they really public universities?
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