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Academic identity and autonomy in a changing policy environment

Abstract

The article draws on two research projects to explore the implications of policy change in the UK for academic identities within a predominantly communitarian theoretical perspective. It focuses on biological scientists and science policies. It examines the impacts of changes upon the dynamic between individuals, disciplines and universities within which academic identities are formed and sustained and upon individual and collective values central to academic identity, namely the primacy of the discipline in academic working lives and academic autonomy. Challenges to these have been strong but they have retained much of their normative power, even if the meaning of academic autonomy has changed. Communitarian theories of academic identity may need to be modified in the contemporary environment but they do not need to be abandoned.

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Correspondence to Mary Henkel.

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Henkel, M. Academic identity and autonomy in a changing policy environment. High Educ 49, 155–176 (2005). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10734-004-2919-1

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Keywords

  • Academic identity
  • academic autonomy
  • disciplines