Imagining the University ; a university that has the capacity continually to re-imagine itself

See on Scoop.itDual impact of research; towards the impactelligent university

Around the world, what it is to be a university is a matter of much debate. The range of ideas of the university in public circulation is, however, exceedingly narrow and is dominated by the idea of the entrepreneurial university. As a consequence, the debate is hopelessly impoverished. Lurking in the literature, there is a broad and even imaginative array of ideas of the university, but those ideas are seldom heard. We need, consequently, not just more ideas of the university but better ideas.

Imagining the University forensically examines this situation, critically interrogating many of the current ideas of the university. Imagining the University argues for imaginative ideas that are critical, sensitive to the deep structures underlying universities and are yet optimistic, in shortfeasible utopias of the university. The case is pressed for one such idea, that of the ecological university. The book concludes by offering a vision of the imagining university, a university that has the capacity continually to re-imagine itself.




Part I: Imagining the university 1. Losing, and regaining, the imagination 2. Perchance to dream 3. Valuing the imagination 

Part II: Structuring the imagination 4. Axes of the imagination 5. Sightings of the imagination 

Part III: Forms of the imagination 6. The ideological imagination 7. The dystopian imagination 8. The persuasive imagination 9. The utopian imagination 

Part IV: Being imaginative 10. Criteria of adequacy 11. Imagining the ecological university 12. The imaginative university Coda: A forgetting of air?


Imagining the UniversityBy Ronald Barnett

Published 11th December 2012 by Routledge – 188 pages

Series: New Studies in Critical Realism and Education

Ronald Barnett is Emeritus Professor of Higher Education, Institute of Education, University of London. His books include The Idea of Higher Education, A Will to Learn, Beyond All Reasonand Being a University. He has been a visiting speaker in thirty-five countries.


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About Wilfred Mijnhardt
RMIMR is my virtual playground, a place to reflect on issues from my professional context, my job as Policy Director at Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University (RSM). RSM is the international university based business school at Erasmus University Rotterdam. More info here: Here is my list of relevant publications on the topic of my RMIMR weblog: The rss feed for my RMIMR collection is here: Here is my other weblog on impact of research:

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