Academic professionalism in the managerialist era: a study of English universities

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Dono: Marcos Pedroso

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Última Atualiz.: 08-11-2018 11:57

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This article examines the relationship between managerialism and academic
professionalism in English universities. Managerialist ideology has introduced to higher
education a range of discourses and practices originating in the corporate world.
According to much of the existing literature this is leading to feelings of
proletarianisation and deprofessionalisation amongst academics. It is argued here that
this somewhat depressing portrait may be overly pessimistic. Following a Foucauldian
epistemology, this article presents the findings of an empirical study that suggest a
willingness to tolerate managerialist modes of governance provided autonomous niches
can be protected. The findings indicate constructive interaction and interdependence
between managerialism and academic professionalism, in which academics exploit
strategies of power to manage and reconstitute their self-concept within an evolutionary
context. As such, they are instrumental in realigning power relations and sustaining
managerialism as a mode of university governance.

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