How was social media cited in 2014 REF Impact Case Studies?

Katy Jordan and Mark Carrigan Our previous post discussed the gap between rhetoric and reality regarding social media and its role in achieving impact, wondering whether institutions were investing too much hope in it as a solution to the problem of demonstrating research impact. Concerned by this gap, we began an investigation into how social media was […]

Platform capitalism and the future of international education

Martin Henry Platform capitalism has emerged from the mist as a spectre on the horizon of late capitalism.  There is growing hype around artificial intelligence, manipulation of data and the growth of platforms in defining life and work in the twenty first century.  As Srnicek points out in his book Platform Capitalism  this new spectre is historically […]

The relevance of Erich Fromm for online learning during a pandemic

Mark Carrigan I was struck recently by how much Erich Fromm can offer in understanding online learning. In his To Have Or To Be? Fromm distinguishes between two orientations to the world, the eponymous having and being, which manifest across the full range of human activity. The former is a matter of possessing, with a substantial subject relating to external […]

When open educational resources and platform capitalism meet

Nikola Wachter Technological advances have an ever increasing impact on every aspect of the education system, from the provisioning of education to working conditions and administrative governance. Unfortunately, technology is too often dumped onto education institutions leaving behind a big ecological footprint but no educational improvement. However, there are also many examples where technology can […]

CfP: Common Futures, Futures of the commons

Filip Vostal What is the collective capacity to shape futures and commons through writing and art? What are the thresholds of our individual and collective political imagination? This volume aims tackle these questions by addressing unconventional and conductive modes of imagination that would not restore some old idea about social(ist) democracy, but would rather craft, […]

A reminder of our current calls for contributions

What sort of university will emerge from this crisis? If you’re interested in helping us answer this question then we hope you might consider contributing to our project through one of our current calls for contributions: Tell us about your experience of adapting fieldwork for the pandemic as part of our podcast series Analyse the […]

Wear a mask

A useful reminder from Nicholas Christakis in his superb new book about the impact of coronavirus on the way we live: Masks alone can therefore have a large effect on respiratory pandemics by bringing the Re down. For instance, a mask with just 50 percent efficacy in reducing droplet transmission worn by just 50 percent […]

The labour of building an online audience

Mark Carrigan If you are a regular user of social media you will undoubtedly be familiar with colleagues asking “how do you find the time?”, occasionally with complete earnestness but more often than not in a way which implies they think you are wasting your time rather than doing real work. As I’ve written previously, […]

Higher education, platforms and the market of symbolic goods

Mario Azevedo and Aliandra Lazzari Barlete In 1999, Brazil’s National Research Council (CNPq) set up the Lattes Platform which aimed to gather information about the knowledge production and research networks existing in the country. The possibility of concentrating information in one place seemed unlikely, or even impossible, given the size of its higher education (HE) system. In […]


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