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Download PDF by John Holmwood: A manifesto for the public university

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By John Holmwood

The Browne record advocates, in influence, the privatisation of upper schooling in England. With the proposed removing of the present cap on scholar charges and the elimination of kingdom investment from so much undergraduate measure programmes, universities are set for a interval of significant reorganisation no longer visible because the greater schooling reforms within the Sixties.
This publication brings jointly many of the top figures in better schooling within the united kingdom to set out what they see because the function of the collage in public lifestyles. The ebook argues for a extra balanced figuring out of the worth of universities than that defined within the Browne record. It advocates that they need to now not in simple terms be visible by way of their contribution to fiscal progress and the human capital of people but in addition when it comes to their contribution to the general public.

This booklet responds to the foremost debates that the Browne assessment and executive statements have sparked, with essays at the cultural value of the collage, the position of the govt in investment learn, inequality in greater schooling, the function of quangos in public lifestyles and where of social technology examine. it's a well timed, vital and regarded exploration of the position of the schools within the united kingdom and a reminder of what we should always worth and defend in our better schooling system.

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1 The matrix of knowledge in its national context SUBSTANTIVE Professional Critical DISCIPLINARY ADVOCACY Policy h Public TRADITIONAL through formal rationalization and from within by devotion to the sustenance of regressive research programmes, so critical knowledge can become dogmatic and irrelevant if it loses touch with its disciplinary heritage and public issues. Public engagement holds professional and critical knowledge accountable to lay audiences. It does so in two ways. On the one hand there is the mediated dialogue with publics – what I call public knowledge of a traditional kind – that involves the generation of public debate through various forms of journalism and other media outlets.

Whether it be subservience to capital or the dictatorship of student desires, the commodification of knowledge undermines its integrity. We can call this a sponsorship model of policy research in which the initiative comes from without. But we cannot reduce policy science to sponsorship; the academic world has its say too. It is, in other words, a negotiated relation in which sponsorship is but one end of a continuum that has advocacy at the other end. In the latter model academics take the initiative in proposing policies for clients, recognizing their interests as framing the problems to be solved but not surrendering their independence.

Just as there is an interdependence of professional and policy knowledge, so the same is true of critical and public knowledge – each infuses others with a discussion of the values recognized by society. Against the instrumentalization, both regulation and commodification, of knowledge the survival of the university depends on the reassertion REDEFINING THE PUBLIC UNIVERSITY: GLOBAL AND NATIONAL CONTEXTS 33 of reflexive knowledge, which means the university community has to develop a collective conscience but also has to counter policy definitions of the worth of knowledge and elaborate the longer term interests, building society in the university and the university in society.

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