Transformations of the Academic Work Process in Corporate Universities

Friday, 20 July 2018: 17:30-19:20
RC04 Sociology of Education (host committee)

Language: English

Academics in many parts of the world agree that, in the 21st century, academic work is being carried out in increasingly corporatised universities oriented primarily toward serving private economic ends, in contrast to the collegially-governed institutions that emerged in the mid-twentieth century which were primarily oriented toward public service. The processes that have underwritten corporatization, such as privatization, commercialization, marketization, and financialization, have profoundly transformed the way universities function and relate to the societies that support them. But few if any activities have been more re-shaped and re-constituted by corporatization over the past three or four decades than the academic work process itself.

This session invites papers that focus critically on this transformation of the academic work process. Papers should explore specific ways in which academic work and its organization within universities have been, and continue to be, re-shaped and re-constituted by corporatization. For example, papers could address how corporatization processes have affected the focus of research and teaching programs, limited academics' control over their own work, contributed to the tiering and fragmentation of the academic workforce, etc. Papers should also address what needs to take place and what strategies could be employed to disrupt, undermine, or reverse these changes and/or create new ways of engaging in intellectual inquiry and practice so that the diverse social, economic, and political needs of 21st century societies and their publics may be better served.
Session Organizer:
Claire POLSTER, University of Regina, Canada
Oral Presentations
Toward Restoring a Holistic Conception of Academic Work: A Strategic Response to Precarity
Janice NEWSON, York University, Canada; Claire POLSTER, University of Regina, Canada
Changing Psychological Contracts of Academics: A South African Case Study
Shaun RUGGUNAN, University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa
Academic Spin-Offs in Italy: New Opportunities for Research Professionals
Augusto COCORULLO, University of Naples Federico II, Italy; Stefano BOFFO, Università degli studi di Napoli Federico II, Italy
Grant Hunting in Corporatized Universities: Experiences from Canada and Finland
Sandra ACKER, University of Toronto, Canada; Oili-Helena YLIJOKI, University of Tampere, Finland
Sociologists, Feminists, and Work in the Corporatized University
Heather LAUBE, University of Michigan-Flint, USA