torsdag den 29. oktober 2009

Besættelser af universiteter i Wien og protester imod 'impact'-mål i UK

Citat fra Reclaim your university! :
"On Tuesday (20.10.2009) the academy of fine arts was squatted by students and lecturers. Their protest was triggered by a recently signed contract between the dean and the ministry of education. The students and lecturers of the academy of fine arts are speaking out against the Bachelor-/ and Master system which is about to be implemented. The main concern of the students of all universities is an amendment of university law 2009 (UG Novell 2009) that allows universities to constrain the number of enrollments henceforth. This development can be interpreted as part of the Bologna process which has the aim of harmonizing the european university structures."
Jeg har ikke set mange omtaler i de danske medier af de aktuelle universitetsbesættelser i Wien, men de er værd at lægge mærke til, for protesten gælder de samme ting, som vi oplever på de danske universiteter, og som vi samlede underskrifter imod sidste år. Man kan fx online høre Alex Callinicos fra UK, som i Wien taler om sine erfaringer med det engelske universitetssystem ved en af ugens store universitetsbesættelser i Wien, i søndags (d. 25. okt. 2009), som jeg fandt et link til hos ISU. I forelæsningen "Universiteter i en nyliberalistisk verden" (her), som bl.a. kritiserer "the harnessing knowledge to wealth creation (i.e., profit)" (og iøvrigt nogle de samme mekanismer omtalt ved Isabella Bruno i sidste indlæg), herunder planerne i UK om at lade 25% veje efter "økonomisk og social impact" af forskningen. Hans lille bog, Universities in a Neoliberal World (November 2006, Bookmarks Publications) findes på nettet (her). Han opfordrer de studerende til modstand, for de universitetsansatte forskere har næsten opgivet at yde modstand i deres forsøg på at tilpasse sig. Han ser krisen på de østrigske universiteter som en del af en større systemkrise for neoliberalismen. Der kører i Østrig en underskriftindsamling (her oversat til engelsk) med disse krav:
1. We oppose ourselves to university-based organisational structures that are determined by economic ends, as well as to the privatisation of teaching, research and knowledge production more broadly. We demand the full public funding and re-democratization of all educational institutions as well as the unconditional abolition of university fees!

2. We oppose ourselves to the pseudo-autonomy of universities. We demand the immediate withdrawal of §8* of the UG 2002!
§8.: ’Upon the proposal of the minister of education, the government may impose the installation of a branch of study on a university or several universities, given this is necessary on the basis of political decisions in the fields of education or science, and given there is no related former agreement as in a contract regarding university performance.’
We demand the freedom to define what teaching and research, as well as science and art, mean in the context of our universities.

3. We oppose ourselves to quality assessments concerning science and art when these operate by economic criteria. We are against the forced imposition of self-marketing strategies on universities, and against the conflation of education with competitiveness and elitism.
We demand the abolition of knowledge surveys and agreements on productivity!

4. We oppose ourselves to the degrading transformation of universities and schools into training facilities oriented by the labour market.
We want education as space for thinking, not training as the mere reproduction of workforce!

5. We insist that the government refrain from taking teaching and art, science and research to be seperable as objects of thought and administration. We demand that the corresponding ministeries be merged immediately.
Fra nyhedslisten edu-factory:
"after a manifestation of students today against the bologna-process and in solidarity withe the squating of the academy of fine arts two days ago, parts of the university of vienna have been occupied spontanously. Right now there are 2000 students taking part in the occupation. About
three hour ago the police has left the university. Right now [22/10/2009] the students are discussing how to act during the next days (...)" "last not least, the academy of fine arts in vienna is still squated."
website of an autonomous students group
video of the occupation
live-tickers on twitter and facebook
further media-coverage:

På bl.a. Steve Fullers blog kan man her finde indlæg om den britiske ide med at lade "relevans" bestemme tildeling af forskningsmidler.

1 kommentar:

Claus Emmeche sagde ...

Fra bloggens netværk har jeg til modtaget følgende:

James Ladyman, professor of philosophy at Bristol, has created a petition in response to the "impact" element that has been incorporated into the new research funding policies.

The petition is as follows:

"We the undersigned petition the Prime Minister to allocate funds for academic research solely on the basis of academic excellence and not on the basis of 'impact' or the judgements of 'users'. We request the reversal of the Research Councils and HEFCE policy to direct funds to projects whose outcomes are determined to have a significant ‘impact’. The arts and humanities do have such an impact, but it is typically difficult if not impossible to judge this in the short-term. Academic excellence is the best predictor of impact in the longer term, and it is on academic excellence alone that research should be judged. ‘Users’ who are not academic experts are not fit to judge the academic excellence of research any more than employers are fit to mark student essays. The UK is renowned for its creative industries. But the roots of creativity in the intellectual life of the nation need sustained support and evaluations based on short-term impact will lead to less impact in the long-term. We also request the abandonment of plans to merge subject panels based on spurious claims of disciplinary and methodological similarities. Merging panels in most cases would undermine both methodological integrity and disciplinary identities and undermine the world class research that the UK currently produces."

Best wishes,

Jeremy Butterfield