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Mass observation

Grove, Jack

The Times higher education supplement, 2014-10-23 (2175), p.34

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  • Title:
    Mass observation
  • Author: Grove, Jack
  • Subjects: Education ; Analysis ; Finance ; University autonomy ; Teaching, Freedom of ; United Kingdom ; Universities and colleges ; Management ; Academic freedom ; College administrators ; Tenure ; Researchers ; Higher education ; Students ; Performance management ; Laboratories ; Funding ; Efficiency ; Collaboration ; Politics ; Research ; Cost control
  • Is Part Of: The Times higher education supplement, 2014-10-23 (2175), p.34
  • Description: Ward, who penned a popular satire of performance monitoring that was published in Times Higher Education earlier this year ("Academic assessment gone mad", Opinion, 6 February), complains that this new managerial style "requires lots of time-sucking box-ticking, report writing and number crunching that deflects from the core mission of teaching and research". In seeking to explain why this new type of performance management has arisen in the academy, replacing largely peer-based, departmental-centred forms of staff assessment, Ward points to the decline of the pre-tenure system in the US, in which a six-year period of intense checks is rewarded with tenure, followed by a significantly more laissez-faire approach to monitoring an academic's activity. While political calls for "accountability" have grown louder over the years, academics have good reasons to oppose a number of types of monitoring and metrics-driven performance assessment, says Amanda Goodall, senior lecturer in management at Cass Business School, City University London and research fellow at IZA Institute for the Study of Labor in Bonn. According to Frances Buck, its co-founder, spokesperson and sales director, the system is unlikely to add to researchers' reporting burden, given that research intensive universities have already invested millions in setting up their own internal outcome-tracking systems; Researchfish merely unifies institutions' approaches.
  • Publisher: London: Times Supplements Ltd
  • Language: English
  • Identifier: ISSN: 0049-3929
  • Source: © ProQuest LLC All rights reserved

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