ERIC Number: EJ799489
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Jun
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 57
Accountability and Innovation in Higher Education: A Disabling Tension?
Studies in Higher Education, v33 n3 p313-329 Jun 2008
This article is an empirically grounded critical exploration of conflict between two associated higher education agendas--audit-driven accountability and academic innovation. Feeding into a discourse of quality, audit and power, it considers how far prevailing economic-bureaucratic models of higher education accountability might actually inhibit the long-term success of other aspects of the quality agenda, such as innovation. Insider research into innovators' experiences of constraint in one higher education institution is used to interrogate assumptions about how meaningful academic innovation can be centrally promoted, managed and accountable. Drawing on this case, the article explores what emerges as a central dynamic of tension in relation to issues of cultural capital, trust, risk avoidance, ambivalence and subversion. It suggests that such tension is properly seen as a part of the realignment of fields of academic power, in both the UK and beyond.
Descriptors: Higher Education, Educational Innovation, Accountability, Educational Quality, Power Structure, Audits (Verification), Risk, Trust (Psychology), Foreign Countries, Institutional Evaluation, Educational Research, Case Studies, Evaluation Methods
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Higher Education
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom