The Grim Threat to British Universities by Simon Head | The New York Review of Books

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Rex USA

A memorial service for Harold Macmillan, Oxford University, 1987

The British universities, Oxford and Cambridge included, are under siege from a system of state control that is undermining the one thing upon which their worldwide reputation depends: the caliber of their scholarship. The theories and practices that are driving this assault are mostly American in origin, conceived in American business schools and management consulting firms. They are frequently embedded in intensive management systems that make use of information technology (IT) marketed by corporations such as IBM, Oracle, and SAP. They are then sold to clients such as the UK government and its bureaucracies, including the universities. This alliance between the public and private sector has become a threat to academic freedom in the UK, and a warning to the American academy about how its own freedoms can be threatened.

http://www.nybooks.com/articles/archives/2011/jan/13/grim-threat-british-univ…

True. It’s a bit clumsy and wide-sweeping but Head’s perceptive warning to American academia should be required reading for students as well as academics.
Can academics research their specialist topic without regard to its wider ‘impact’? Can they negotiate fixed term contracts?
What IS the value research?

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