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Knowledge Compromise(d)? Ways and values of coproduction in academia

Fischer, Josefine LU (2015)
Abstract (Swedish)
Popular Abstract in English

Knowledge can be many things; it can be metaphysical, enhancing the understanding of human beings and social relations. It can be hard facts, information, structure and ordering of nature. Knowledge can be inherent in the knowing subject – the emancipated subject, or it can exist as an entity independent of its founder. An apposite metaphor is knowledge as an end in itself or knowledge as a means to an end, do we learn for the joy of knowing or to we learn in order to manipulate an object or phenomenon? This fundamental distinction gives structure to an account of university-society relations from the middle age and up to today. Contemporary knowledge production, it is argued, favours knowledge... (More)
Popular Abstract in English

Knowledge can be many things; it can be metaphysical, enhancing the understanding of human beings and social relations. It can be hard facts, information, structure and ordering of nature. Knowledge can be inherent in the knowing subject – the emancipated subject, or it can exist as an entity independent of its founder. An apposite metaphor is knowledge as an end in itself or knowledge as a means to an end, do we learn for the joy of knowing or to we learn in order to manipulate an object or phenomenon? This fundamental distinction gives structure to an account of university-society relations from the middle age and up to today. Contemporary knowledge production, it is argued, favours knowledge as a means to an end. The effects may be devastating for any piece of academic knowledge, which cannot prove its immediate value in monetary terms. Academic knowledge needs to be recognised in all its variety in order for the university to remain a trustworthy institution, capable of contributing solutions to the pressing problems of our time. (Less)
Abstract
This thesis deals with the colonisation of the university by market forces. The object of inquiry is coproduction of academic knowledge between academic and non-academic actors in newly established universities and university colleges in Sweden. The development of knowledge as a main competitive advantage for commercial companies, and the shift in policies accompanying this development, provides an explanation for the introduction of market mechanisms into the governance of university research. The main contribution of the thesis, however, is the analyses of three coproducing research centres – in service research, engineering and collaborative media – on the basis of epistemology, interpreted as different knowledge cultures. In most... (More)
This thesis deals with the colonisation of the university by market forces. The object of inquiry is coproduction of academic knowledge between academic and non-academic actors in newly established universities and university colleges in Sweden. The development of knowledge as a main competitive advantage for commercial companies, and the shift in policies accompanying this development, provides an explanation for the introduction of market mechanisms into the governance of university research. The main contribution of the thesis, however, is the analyses of three coproducing research centres – in service research, engineering and collaborative media – on the basis of epistemology, interpreted as different knowledge cultures. In most policy accounts knowledge is treated as homogeneous, which is problematic as it conceals differences in academic disciplines’ relations to the object or phenomenon of inquiry. Such differences have bearing on publication patterns, prospects of generating academic credibility and possibilities to engage external partners in coproduction relationships. Importantly, this has an impact on the prospects of attracting various sources of funding that are of significance for newly established universities and university colleges with fewer fixed resources than the old universities. It is argued that not only are we witnessing a colonisation of the entire university by market forces, but also a colonisation of social science and humanities by science - scientific perspectives and work ways and the technical knowledge interest. (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
supervisor
opponent
  • Åström, Fredrik, Lund University Libraries
organization
publishing date
type
Thesis
publication status
published
subject
keywords
epistemology, knowledge interest, research policy, coproduction, university college
pages
249 pages
publisher
Lund University (Media-Tryck)
defense location
Room 128, Stora Algatan 4, Lund
defense date
2015-11-20 10:00
ISBN
978-91-7623-542-3
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
88934e3c-9a06-432c-9a86-cd07d00282ed (old id 8084086)
date added to LUP
2015-10-30 13:24:49
date last changed
2016-09-19 08:45:03
@phdthesis{88934e3c-9a06-432c-9a86-cd07d00282ed,
  abstract     = {This thesis deals with the colonisation of the university by market forces. The object of inquiry is coproduction of academic knowledge between academic and non-academic actors in newly established universities and university colleges in Sweden. The development of knowledge as a main competitive advantage for commercial companies, and the shift in policies accompanying this development, provides an explanation for the introduction of market mechanisms into the governance of university research. The main contribution of the thesis, however, is the analyses of three coproducing research centres – in service research, engineering and collaborative media – on the basis of epistemology, interpreted as different knowledge cultures. In most policy accounts knowledge is treated as homogeneous, which is problematic as it conceals differences in academic disciplines’ relations to the object or phenomenon of inquiry. Such differences have bearing on publication patterns, prospects of generating academic credibility and possibilities to engage external partners in coproduction relationships. Importantly, this has an impact on the prospects of attracting various sources of funding that are of significance for newly established universities and university colleges with fewer fixed resources than the old universities. It is argued that not only are we witnessing a colonisation of the entire university by market forces, but also a colonisation of social science and humanities by science - scientific perspectives and work ways and the technical knowledge interest.},
  author       = {Fischer, Josefine},
  isbn         = {978-91-7623-542-3},
  keyword      = {epistemology,knowledge interest,research policy,coproduction,university college},
  language     = {eng},
  pages        = {249},
  publisher    = {Lund University (Media-Tryck)},
  school       = {Lund University},
  title        = {Knowledge Compromise(d)? Ways and values of coproduction in academia},
  year         = {2015},
}