Academic identities and sense of place: A collaborative autoethnography in the neoliberal university

Emma Nordbäck, Marko Hakonen, Janne Tienari*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

Abstract

Neoliberalism, precarious jobs, and control of work have multiple effects on academic identities as our allegiances to valued social groups and our connections to meaningful locations are challenged. While identities in neoliberal universities have received increasing research attention, sense of place has passed unnoticed in the literature. We engage with collaborative autoethnography and contribute to the literature in two ways. First, we show that while academic identities are put into motion by the neoliberal regime, they are constructed through mundane constellations of places and social entities. Second, we elucidate how academic identities today are characterized by restlessness and how academics use place and time to find meaning for themselves and their work. We propose a form of criticism to neoliberal universities that is sensitive to positionalities and places and offer ideas on how to build shared understandings that help us survive in the face of neoliberal standards of academic “excellence.”
Original languageEnglish
Peer-reviewed scientific journalManagement Learning
Number of pages19
ISSN1350-5076
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 03.04.2021
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article - refereed

Keywords

  • 512 Business and Management
  • academic identity
  • collaborative autoethnography
  • identity
  • neoliberalism
  • place
  • university

Sustainable Development Goals

  • GOAL 08: Decent Work and Economic Growth

Areas of Strength and Areas of High Potential (AoS and AoHP)

  • AoS: Responsible organising
  • AoS: Leading for growth and well-being

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