The University Goes to Market: The Infiltration of Neoliberalism

  • Heather Fraser
  • Nik Taylor
Part of the Palgrave Critical University Studies book series (PCU)


In this first chapter, we explore some of the foundational concepts for this book. We start by outlining the impacts of the neoliberalization of the academy and advance our central argument: that such impacts go beyond the interpersonal or the administrative to determine the very generation and dissemination of knowledge itself. Drawing on our own work that addresses the intersection of species, gender, and class, we articulate how the power/knowledge paradigm of neoliberalism has begun to dismantle the idea of a public intellectual. We consider what the costs of this are to research located within, and seeking to highlight issues pertinent to, marginalized communities and issues. We conclude with a brief overview of the book and its main themes.


Public Intellectual Academic Capitalism Knowledge Output Research Excellence Framework Margin Work 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


  1. Ahmed, S. (2014). Willful subjects. Durham, NC: Duke University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Archer, L. (2008). The new neoliberal subjects? Young/er academics’ constructions of professional identity. Journal of Education Policy, 23(3), 265–285.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Baines, D., Cunningham, I., & Fraser, H. (2011). Constrained by managerialism: Caring as participation in the voluntary social services. Economic and Industrial Democracy, 32(2), 329–352.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Beddoe, L. (2014). Feral families, troubled families: The spectre of the underclass in New Zealand. New Zealand Sociology, 29(3), 51.Google Scholar
  5. Berg, L., & Roche, M. (1997). Market metaphors, neo‐liberalism and the construction of academic landscapes in Aotearoa/New Zealand. Journal of Geography in Higher Education, 21(2), 147–161.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Boas, T., & Gans-Morse, J. (2009). Neoliberalism: From new liberal philosophy to anti-liberal slogan. Studies in Comparative International Development, 44(2), 137–161.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Bowen, H., Schuster, J. (1986). American professors: A national resource imperiled. New York: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  8. Burrows, R. (2012). Living with the h-index? Metric assemblages in the contemporary Academy. The Sociological Review, 6(2), 355–372.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Castree, N., & Sparke, M. (2000). Professional geography and the corporatization of the university: Experiences, evaluations, and engagements. Antipode, 32(3), 222–229.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Collier, R. (2014). ‘Love law, love life’: Neoliberalism, wellbeing and gender in the legal profession—The case of law school. Legal Ethics, 17(2), 202–230.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Davies, B., & Bansel, P. (2005). The time of their lives? Academic workers in neoliberal time(s). Health Sociology Review, 14(1), 47–58.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Davies, B., & Bansel, P. (2010). Governmentality and academic work: Shaping the hearts and minds of academic workers. Journal of Curriculum Theorizing, 26(3), 5–20.Google Scholar
  13. Ferguson, I., & Lavalette, M. (2006). Globalization and global justice Towards a social work of resistance. International Social Work, 49(3), 309–318.Google Scholar
  14. Ferguson, I., & Lavalette, M. (2013). Crisis, austerity and the future(s) of social work in the UK. Critical and Radical Social Work, 1(1), 95–110.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Freire, P. (2000). Education for critical consciousness. London: Continuum.Google Scholar
  16. Gay, G. (2004). Navigating marginality en route to the professoriate: Graduate students of color learning and living in academia. International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education, 17(2), 265–288.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Giroux, H. (2002). Neoliberalism, corporate culture, and the promise of higher education: The University as a democratic public sphere. Harvard Educational Review, 72(4), 425–462.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Gonzales, L., Martinez, E., & Ordu, C. (2014). Exploring faculty experiences in a striving university through the lens of academic capitalism. Studies in Higher Education, 39(7), 1097–1115.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Gonzales, L., & Nunez, A. (2014). The ranking regime and the production of knowledge: Implications for academia. Education Policy Analysis Archives, 22(31), 1–24.Google Scholar
  20. Grimaldi, E. (2012). Neoliberalism and the marginalisation of social justice: The making of an education policy to combat social exclusion. International Journal of Inclusive Education, 16(11), 1131–1154.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Hall, J., Stevens, P., & Meleis, A. (1994). Marginalization: A guiding concept for valuing diversity in nursing knowledge development. Advances in Nursing Science, 16(4), 23–41.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Hartman, Y., & Darab, S. (2012). A call for slow scholarship: A case study on the intensification of academic life and its implications for pedagogy. Review of Education, Pedagogy, and Cultural Studies, 34(1–2), 49–60.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Harvey, D. (2005). A brief history of neoliberalism. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  24. Hawkins, R., Manzi, M., & Ojeda, D. (2014). Lives in the making: Power, academia and the everyday. ACME: An International E-Journal for Critical Geographies, 13(2), 328–351.Google Scholar
  25. Heath, M., & Burdon, P. (2013). Academic resistance to the Neoliberal University. Legal Education Review, 23, 379.Google Scholar
  26. Illich, I. ([1971] 2013). Deschooling society. KKien Publishing.Google Scholar
  27. Jago, B. (2002). Chronicling an academic depression. Journal of Contemporary Ethnography, 31(6), 729–757.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Jones, R., Jr., & Calafell, B. (2012). Contesting neoliberalism through critical pedagogy, intersectional reflexivity, and personal narrative: Queer tales of academia. Journal of Homozsexuality, 59(7), 957–981.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Kauppinen, I. (2012). Towards transnational academic capitalism. Higher Education, 64(4), 543–556.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Lorenz, C. (2012). If you’re so smart, why are you under surveillance? Universities, neoliberalism, and new public management. Critical Inquiry, 38(3), 599–629.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Marginson, S. (2004, April 10). There’s still no such thing as a higher education market. Times Higher Education.Google Scholar
  32. Marginson, S., & Considine, M. (2000). The enterprise university: Power, governance and reinvention in Australia. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  33. Melnyk, S., Stewart, D., & Swink, M. (2004). Metrics and performance measurement in operations management: Dealing with the metrics maze. Journal of Operations Management, 22(3), 209–218.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Metcalfe, A. (2010). Revisiting academic capitalism in Canada: No longer the exception. The Journal of Higher Education, 81(4), 489–514.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Meyers, M. (2013). The war on academic women: Reflections on postfeminism in the neoliberal academy. Journal of Communication Inquiry, 37(4), 274–283.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Montero, M., & Sonn, C. (2009). Methods for liberation: Critical consciousness in action. In Psychology of Liberation (pp. 73–91). New York: Springer.Google Scholar
  37. Navarro, V. (2007). Neoliberalism, globalization, and inequalities: Consequences for health and quality of life. New York: Baywood Publishers.Google Scholar
  38. Osei-Kofi, N. (2012). Junior faculty of color in the corporate university: Implications of neoliberalism and neoconservatism on research, teaching and service. Critical Studies in Education, 53(2), 229–244.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Paasi, A. (2005). Globalisation, academic capitalism, and the uneven geographies of international journal publishing spaces. Environment and Planning A, 37(5), 769–789.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Percy, A., & Beaumont, R. (2008). The casualisation of teaching and the subject at risk. Studies in Continuing Education, 30(2), 145–157.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Petersen, E., Bendix, E., & Davies, B. (2010). In/difference in the neoliberalised university. Learning and Teaching, 3(2), 92–109.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Posecznick, A. (2014). Introduction: On theorising and humanising academic complicity in the neoliberal university. Learning and Teaching, 7(1), 1–11.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Purcell, M. (2007). City-Regions, Neoliberal Globalization and Democracy: A Research Agenda. International Journal of Urban and Regional Research, 31(1), 197–206.Google Scholar
  44. Reid, J. (2013). The neoliberal biopolitics of resilience and the spectre of the ecofascist state. In N. Lemay-Hebert, N. Onuf, V. Rakic, & P. Bojanic (Eds.), Semantics of statebuilding: Language, meanings and sovereignty (pp. 163–180). London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  45. Rose, J., & Dustin, D. (2009). The neoliberal assault on the public university: The case of recreation, park, and leisure research. Leisure Sciences, 31(4), 397–402.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Shahjahan, R. (2014). From ‘no’ to ‘yes’: Postcolonial perspectives on resistance to neoliberal higher education. Discourse: Studies in the Cultural Politics of Education, 35(2), 219–232.Google Scholar
  47. Shore, C. (2010). Beyond the multiversity: Neoliberalism and the rise of the schizophrenic university. Social Anthropology, 18(1), 15–29.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. Slaughter, S., Archer, C., & Campbell, T. (2004). Boundaries and quandaries: How professors negotiate market relations. The Review of Higher Education, 28, 129–165.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Slaughter, S., & Leslie, L. (1997). Academic capitalism: Politics, policies and the entrepreneurial university. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press.Google Scholar
  50. Slaughter, S., & Rhoades, G. (2004). Academic capitalism and the new economy: Markets, state and higher education. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press.Google Scholar
  51. Smith, N. (2000). Who rules this sausage factory? Antipode, 32(3), 330–339.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. Smyth, J. (2010). Critical teaching as the counter-hegemony to neoliberalism. In S. Macrine, P. McLaren, & D. Hill (Eds.), Revolutionizing pedagogy: Education for social justice within and beyond global neo-liberalism. New York: Palgrave.Google Scholar
  53. Tirelli, V. (2014). Contingent academic labor against neoliberalism. New Political Science, 36(4), 523–537.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  54. Van den Brink, M. (2015). The politics of knowledge: The responses to feminist research from academic leaders. Equality, Diversity and Inclusion: An International Journal, 34(6), 483–495.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  55. Ylijoki, O. (2003). Entangled in academic capitalism? A case-study on changing ideals and practices of university research. Higher Education, 45(3), 307–335.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  56. Zermsky, R., & Massey, W. (2005). Remaking the American university: Market-smart and mission-centered. New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Heather Fraser
    • 1
  • Nik Taylor
    • 1
  1. 1.Flinders University of South AustraliaAdelaideAustralia

Personalised recommendations