22 SES 03 D, Policy and Governance in HE
"New managerialism" is endemic in UK higher education, an accepted concept that both characterizes and criticizes the commandeering of the academy by a class of administrators (Deem & Brehony, 2005). New managerialism is characterized by an emphasis on efficiency, effectiveness, and excellence through monitoring, measurement, and auditing. Faculty work and professional self-understandings are framed by new managerial behaviors, from evaluation of performance to control over curriculum. Indeed, faculty autonomy – a hallmark of academic identity – under new managerialism has become if not negligible then certainly diminished—an example of the replacement of the logic of the professional academic with a neoliberal, market logic (Thornton, Ocasio, & Lounsbury, 2012). In the U.S., the adoption of new managerialism has yet to be documented. Institutional behaviors in the form of academic capitalism in research intensive universities and financial dependency on state governments as well as reliance upon collective bargaining agreements in public state comprehensive universities make these institutions vulnerable to neoliberal initiatives. In the UK, these initiatives are conveyed and established through a managerial class. In the present investigation, we show that in two universities in the U.S., full-time tenure track faculty not only comply with principles of neoliberalism in their behaviors, including revenue generation and productivity in teaching students and publication, as well as service, but also point to institutional structures that direct their behaviors. Yet, whether or not a class or regime of managers is the responsible party and that a condition of new managerialism oversees U. S. universities are not resolved.
We employed institutional theory as a theoretical framework to understand and explain university faculty members' perceptions and narratives of experience. Institutional theory posits that multiple institutional logics may exist simultaneously and vie for attention (Dacin, Goodstein, & Scott, 2002). Deinstitutionalization occurs when institutions “weaken and disappear” (Scott, 2001, p. 182) and one institutional logic is replaced with another as old values are diluted by new values. In addition, institutional logics may be blended or segregated (Thornton et al., 2012). Institutional logics may not receive widespread acceptance, or even passive acquiescence, as agentic members of an organization might engage in various responses to the institutionalization of new logics (Scott, 2004). Consequently, an analysis of institutional logics must consider the context of the institution as well as identify the actors responsible for the reinforcement of new or established logics (Scott, 2004).
The adoption of norms necessitates the adoption of appropriate structures (Scott, 2004). Institutional logics are reflected through cultural-cognitive features; whereas, structures are identified by regulative and normative features. According to Tolbert and Zucker (1996), similarly to logics, structures undergo stages on the path to institutionalization. First, structures are developed as a response to organizational problems (habitualization); then, decision-makers achieve consensus regarding the structure (objectification); finally, structures are adopted across organizational actors over an extended period of time (sedimentation).
- To what extent and in what ways are new managerial tendencies reflected in the narratives of university faculty?
- What are the ways in which faculty replace, blend, or segregate the logic of traditional academic values with the logic of new managerial values?
References Bochner, A.P., & Riggs, N.A. (2014). Practicing narrative inquiry. In P. Leavy (Ed.) The Oxford handbook of qualitative research, 195-222. Davin, M.T., Goodstein, J., & Scott, W.R. (2002). Institutional theory and institutional change: Introduction to the special research forum. The Academy of Management Journal, 45(1), 43-56. Deem, R., & Brehony, K. J. (2005). Management as ideology: The case of 'new managerialism' in higher education. Oxford Review of Education, 31(2), 217-235. Krippendorff, K. (2004). Content analysis: An introduction to its methodology (Second ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications. Levin, J. S., Shaker, G., & Wagoner, R. (2011). Post neoliberalism: The Professional identity of faculty off the tenure-track. In B. Pusser, K. Kempner, S. Marginson, & I. Ordorika (Eds.), Universities and the public sphere: Knowledge creation and state building in the era of globalization (pp. 197-217). New York: Routledge. Richards, L. (2009). Handling qualitative data, (Second ed.), London: Sage Publications. Scott, W.R. (2001). Institutions and organizations, (Second ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage. Scott, W.R. (2004). Institutional theory: Contributing to a theoretical research program. Chapter prepared for Great minds in management: The process of theory development, K.G. Smith and M. A. Hitt (Eds.), Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press. Tolbert, P. S., & Zucker, L.G. (1996). The institutionalization of institutional theory. In. S. Clegg, C. Hardy, and W. Nord (Eds.), Handbook of organization studies (pp. 175-190). London: Sage. Thornton, P. H., Ocasio, W., & Lounsbury, M. (2012). The institutional logics perspective. John Wiley & Sons, Inc. Ward, S. C. (2012). Neoliberalism and the global restructuring of knowledge and education. Routledge.
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