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The Political Roots of the Public Engagement Agenda
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Public trust in the scientific community is under extraordinary pressure. Crucial areas of human activity and public policy, such as education, universities, climate and health care are influenced by populist political strategies rather than evidence-based solutions. Moreover, data-driven methods are becoming increasingly subject to de-legitimisation.

This book examines potential remedies for improving public trust and the legitimacy of science. It reviews different policy approaches adopted by governments to incentivise the empowerment of stakeholders through co-production arrangements, participatory mechanisms, public engagement and interaction between citizens and researchers.

Offering an original analysis of the political roots of the governmental impact and engagement agenda, this book sheds much-needed light on the wider connections to democracy.

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Negotiating Inclusion and Prestige
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The liberal arts approach to higher education is a growing trend globally. We are told that the mental dexterity and independent, questioning spirit cultivated by such interdisciplinary degrees are the best preparation for the as-yet unknown executive jobs of tomorrow.

This book explores the significant recent growth of these degrees in England, in order to address an enduring problem for higher education: the relationship between meritocracy and elitism.

Against the view that the former is a myth providing rhetorical cover for the latter, it argues that these are two entangled, but discrete, value systems. Sociology must now pay attention to how students and academics attempt to disentangle them.

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Reflections on Power and Possibility

The law is heavily implicated in creating, maintaining, and reproducing racialised hierarchies which bring about and preserve acute global disparities and injustices. This essential book provides an examination of the meanings of decolonisation and explores how this examination can inform teaching, researching, and practising of law.

It explores the ways in which the foundations of law are entangled in colonial thought and in its [re]production of ideas of commodification of bodies and space-time. Thus, it is an exploration of the ways in which we can use theories and praxes of decolonisation to produce legal knowledge for flourishing futures.

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Revealing Public Secrets

Drawing on affect theory and research on academic capitalism, this book examines the contemporary crisis of universities. Moving through 11 international and comparative case studies, it explores diverse features of contemporary academic life, from the coloniality of academic capitalism to performance management and the experience of being performance-managed.

Affect has emerged as a major analytical lens of social research. However, it is rarely applied to universities and their marketisation. Offering a unique exploration of the contemporary role of affect in academic labour and the organisation of scholarship, this book considers modes of subjectivation, professional and personal relationships and organisational structures and their affective charges.

Chapter 9 is available Open Access via OAPEN under CC-BY-NC-ND licence.

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Transformational Strategic Alliances Towards UN SDGs

Robust university–industry partnerships are vital to achieve the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and create a better world for everyone.

Developing the theory and practice of the ‘5th Generation University’, this book shows how cross-sector collaboration and innovation are crucial to maximising the societal benefits of research, education and knowledge exchange, while also driving economic growth and productivity.

The authors bring extensive experience in working at the interface between academia, industry and government to demonstrate how universities can effectively combine transdisciplinary programmatic activities and strategic corporate philanthropy. They explain how long-term alliances can be forged to have a transformational impact on the greatest challenges facing our world such as climate change.

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Redesigning Research Universities
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Are British research universities losing their way or are they finding a new way?

Nigel Thrift, a well-known academic and a former Vice-Chancellor, explores recent changes in the British research university that threaten to erode the quality of these higher education institutions. He considers what a research university has now become by examining the quandaries that have arisen from a succession of misplaced strategies and false expectations.

Challenging both higher education policy and leadership, he argues that the focus on student number growth and a series of research policy missteps has upset research universities’ priorities just at a point in the history of planetary breakdown when their research is most needed.

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Over recent decades, national Higher Education sectors across the world have experienced a gradual process of marketisation.

This book offers a new interpretation on why and how marketisation has taken place within England. It explores distinct assumptions on the nature of graduate work and how the graduate labour market drives the argumentation for more market and choice. Demonstrating the flaws in these assumptions – which are based on an idealised relationship between Higher Education and high-skilled work – this book fills an important need by questioning the current rationale for further marketisation.

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The Poetics of Letting Go

This book invites the reader to think about collaborative research differently. Using the concepts of ‘letting go’ (the recognition that research is always in a state of becoming) and ‘poetics’ (using an approach that might interrupt and remake the conventions of research), it envisions collaborative research as a space where relationships are forged with the use of arts-based and multimodal ways of seeing, inquiring, and representing ideas.

The book’s chapters are interwoven with ‘Interludes’ which provide alternative forms to think with and another vantage point from which to regard phenomena, pose a question, and seek insights or openings for further inquiry, rather than answers. Altogether, the book celebrates collaboration in complex, exploratory, literary and artistic ways within university and community research.

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Pedagogies of Hope and Social Justice
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Based on the Transforming Lives research project, this book explores the transformative power of further education.

Outlining a timely and critical approach to educational research and practice, the book draws extensively on the testimonies of students and teachers to construct a model of transformative teaching and learning. The book critiques reductive ‘skills’ policies in further education and illuminates the impact colleges and Lifelong Learning have on social justice both for individuals, their families and communities.

For trainee teachers, teachers, leaders, researchers and policymakers alike, this is a persuasive argument for transformative approaches to teaching and learning which highlights the often unmeasured and under-appreciated strong holistic social benefits of further education.

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An Action Guide for Change
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How is your institution enabling Black, Asian and minority ethnic staff and students to thrive? Is your institution effectively tackling racism?

Following the 2020 Black Lives Matter movement, the higher education sector has started making bold commitments to dismantling structural racism. However, big questions remain about how higher education can combat institutional racism and achieve real change.

This book disrupts the higher education sector through ambitious actions and collective, participatory and evidence-informed responses to racism. It offers a roadmap for senior leaders, staff and students to build strategies, programmes and interventions that effectively tackle racism.

Arising from current staff and recent student experiences, this book supports institutions driving equality, diversity, inclusion and intersectional programmes in higher education.

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