Linkages to the civil society as ‘leisure time activities’? Experiences at a German university
The paper focuses on the role academic organizations and their members play within their socio-economic and socio-political contexts. It presents findings of the case study of a German university. Based on qualitative interviews, written documents and bibliometric analyses, we can see that, first, most of the university's links to the economy, political actors, and broader civil society emerge in a bottom-up and decentralized way, and they thrive on individual motivation and commitment. Therefore, there are clear limits to the formal institutionalization of such activities at the organizational level. Second, while ties to industry pay off at least indirectly through research funding, links to regional policy-making and broader civil society remain largely unrewarded in academia. For the future, we expect a growing tension between the organizational goal to embrace additional goals and the individual goals, especially of younger researchers who increasingly tend to focus on those activities that are rewarded in academia. Copyright , Beech Tree Publishing.
Volume (Year): 36 (2009)
Issue (Month): 2 (March)
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