Volume 2, Issue 2
  • ISSN 1384-6639
  • E-ISSN: 1569-9692
Buy:$35.00 + Taxes


This paper reflects on ways AR might support a transformation process in universities and in their relationship to the rest of society. As a point of departure, universities inherited from the 19th century Humboldtian university the credo of 'researching and teaching any important subject' and creating new knowledge through the freedom of thought. They became a state within the state. Universities came to try to nonopolize the knowledge production system while fighting the battle for freedom of thought and expression in academia. They have not, however, participated in the struggle to create knowledge based on and useful to groups in society other than powerful academic, political, and business elites.Now universities face new challenges. The existing modus operandi is unlikely to survive for much longer because the users of knowledge and those who pay to keep universities open, question the relevance of university-created knowledge. This challenge arises from two very different social groups. Businesses are creating their own schools of advanced study and many ordinary people are disenchanted with university knowledge that does not relate to their own life world. This problem is particularly acute in the social sciences, since people have social knowledge of their own. Many pecple realize that social science produces knowledge about the everyday world that is incomprehensible or irrelevant to ordinary people.We propose taking a different view of universities, conceptualizing them as members of many different knowledge supply chains, not as autopoietic systems. The ultimate challenge in a specific knowledge supply chain is to gain societal legitimacy for the knowledge production process and to supply valued knowledge for the users. Pursuing this approach forces a reinvestigation of the rigor/relevance argument. We argue that universities should seek legitimacy in the external world through integrating themselves in many and diverse knowledge supply chains and that this effort will simultaneously improve the quality of knowledge produced by the universities. We offer an Action Research strategy to achieve this integration by linking knowledge users into the research process and integrating the researchers into the knowledge production systems and activities of the users beyond the academy.


Article metrics loading...

Loading full text...

Full text loading...

This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was successful
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error