It seems that royals do possess some degree of intelligence after all. When you see how many of them have attended gymnasium and / or studied at a university. Are they all true, really that intelligent? Or is this in line with expectations for royals? Or are they also given a helping hand now and then? Just remember that, if I'm correct, Willem-Alexander's graduation thesis (in History) was never made transparent. I.e. with the exception of a few, no one has been able to view or read it. In comparison, my own graduation thesis (completely other study) could be read by interested parties via / in the corresponding university library. I know, I am not a royal/politician/other well known person, so it is understandable.
I don't know about the situation in most other countries but I do know that in some countries the standards to get into uni and then to graduate has been lowered to get more people with degrees. As a high school teacher I have seen students get to university and into hard to enter courses that I know if they had been doing their final year when I started they would have had no chance of going to uni at all. When I was at school, in the 1970s, only about 30% of students even did the final two years of school and about 50% of them went to uni - so 15% of the starting cohort. Now it is close to 85% finishing school and about 80% of that 85% going to university and then getting their degrees. Unis don't like failing kids anymore as it also affects their reputation.
As for reading his dissertation - that I suspect may vary by country. Personally I didn't give permission for my Ph.D to be published and so the only people who ever read it were my supervisor and the three other people who judged it (and my family). For my undergraduate course and my first masters it was all by coursework so no dissertation or thesis to be written and thus to be read. I did my first thesis as a 'pre-Ph.D' thesis as I had done so well on my masters by coursework and that thesis was basically the first chapter of my final Ph.D.
I suppose what I am really saying is that different countries have different requirements to get into uni, to graduate and also privacy laws about people's work etc.
We do know that Prince Charles and Prince Edward didn't have the grades for Cambridge when they went to those universities but since then the British royals have had to have the required grades for the uni they actually attended hence William went to St Andrews rather than Oxford or Cambridge as he had the grades for St Andrews but not for Oxford or Cambridge.
I agree with you on the development of University degrees overall.
And I agree that far too many people attend university or college, who would be much better suited to other educations. Esp. bachelor levels are IMO sinking. We have students who fail miserably at math or at writing any sort of texts, not because they are savants in other areas, but because their overall schooling is poor.
What I find interesting is that you could choose to have your dissertation kept private.
Usually a dissertation is a scientific paper, that is geared towards publication. In Germany all dissertations are public access, you have to "donate" a certain amount of copies to the library of your university, your institute and often to the state library. Public records list all dissertations since the beginning of the university system and you should be able to find a copy of every doctor thesis ever done at a german university. (minus those that fell victim to big fires after war bombings ).
Attending university or attending classes IMO is not the same as finishing or doing exams. Those of the royals who did not graduate, IMO do not count as having had a university education.
I make allowances for the elder generation of course. Back then it was seen as completely unnecessary.
And of course doing a year at a uni abroad also is a great way to broaden your horizon, it looks good on your CV, but a semester or year at e.g Harvard is not comparable to a Harvard degree. Esp. not when Daddy's or Mummy's name or money opened the door and not your grades or an exchange program.