the insecure universitariat

Interesting article here about the casualisation of work in universities.

It, perhaps, gives additional insights into my move into industry. Now, I’m not going to claim I was treated like the case study in the article for a minute. However, I’ve seen which way the wind is blowing since early on: when preparing to move to Australia and getting advice about the rights I’d have there, the UCU officer seemed pretty alarmed.

Of course different countries have reformed their higher education system in different ways – I didn’t experience this casualisation phenomenon in Sweden and my problems there were another kettle of fish entirely. However, in the anglo-Saxon countries I think there is trouble ahead. After all, if academics are either casual teachers or increasingly “consultant-like” researchers who must produce something of relevance to industry (often at the expence of the blue skies research the universities will need in a decade if they are to remain relevant and competitive), it begs the question “why be a consultant in a university when you can do the job without the administrative hassle and receiving the true benefit of your labour by working for yourself?”

Bit of a no-brainer really.