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The Knowledge Worker in the Divided University 4. Her research interests include theorising through ethnographic research, sociology of education, the management of higher education, the public understanding of science and rural sociology. He is a founding editor of the journal, Organization , and has published extensively in leading journals such as Organization Studies and Journal of Management Studies.

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Thus, Blairite technocratic Managerialism has been much more concerned to enhance performance and accountability in public services delivery, while avoiding the extreme spatial and social inequalities in the scope and quality of service delivery that unregulated market competition inevitably generates over time and place Walsh ; Thrift Pollitt , ; Pollitt, Birchall, and Putman These dynamic tensions are likely to become more acute, and consequently generate more complex and ambiguous streams of interactive change and innovation, in a context where microlevel audit and surveillance practices become more intensive and intrusive.

Neo-corporatist Managerialism was dominated by a negotiated compromise between bureaucratic and professional modes of administrative control Child Neo-technocratic Managerialism generates a move towards a more detailed, intrusive, and continuous regime of micro-level work control Child in which eclectic combinations of audit, performance, and accountability technologies are constructed and implemented. Each of these control logics and forms had, radically contrasting, implications for the occupational ideologies and identities of professional service provider groups Dent and Whitehead Neoliberalism, and the cultural control regime that it engendered, attempted to transform this pre-existing ideological and discursive regime by radically reconstructing professional service provider identities in a way that made market-based conceptions of enterprise, entrepreneurialism, and innovation the dominant values and symbols Alvesson and Wilmott Neo-technocratic Managerialism, and the much more intrusive and detailed regime of work-based performance management and control that it instigated, completes this underlying transformation in formally institutionalized professional occupational ideologies and identities.


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As Miller argues, under this ideological and administrative regime, central government insists that service performance be judged and evaluated from a consumerist perspective Miller But real consumers are too broad and amorphous a body to perform the task of performance review and assessment.

Within these self-governing and self-managing networks, professional service providers are expected to internalize new modes of control and forms of identity in which consumerism, localism, and populism replace professionalism, centralism, and elitism as the dominant values driving service organization and delivery Clarke But, as with all types of control technologies, there is no guarantee that they will be mobilized and utilized in ways that are consistent with the larger ideological vision and policy objectives that drive the New Labour variant of Managerialism.

The informal logics of action and everyday situated practices that operate within public service workplaces are likely to continue, in however an attenuated form, whatever the ideological imperatives and performance targets that drive New Labour policy. Hybridization has been both consequence and cause of growing complexity, diversity, and fragmentation in policy objectives, organizational forms, and working practices.

The organizational hybrids that this process of hybridization produces—such as foundation hospitals or city academies or independent treatment centres—may be inherently unstable, fragmented, and ambiguous but they re combine material resources, technical skills, and political legitimacy in a way that is consistent with network-based forms of governance consistently favoured by New Labour.

However, hybridization reinforces the underlying dynamic 17 New Managerialism and Public Services Reform of increasing complexity, uncertainty, and fragmentation to the extent that it responds to cross-cutting forces and pressures without allowing any one principle of organizational design or logic of collective action to dominate any other. Organizational hybrids are, necessarily, inherently unstable and fragmented forms of organizing in that they operate on the basis of multiple logics pushing in the direction of enhanced specialization, segmentation, and decentralization.

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In this respect, organizational hybrids are not simply forms of collective or corporate action; they are also modes or mechanisms of institutional governance entailing the authorization and legitimation of power relationships that endure, in however a schematic form, over extended temporal and spatial locales. They also generate and sustain control technologies, deployed and managed by elite groups, geared to the regulation of social interaction on a detailed and continuous basis. In this respect, organizational hybrids—and the network-based form of governance and more detailed and intrusive systems of work control that they seem to generate—present particular problems and tensions for public service professionals as they struggle to come to terms with the radically changed political and organizational context in which they have to operate.

This is so in a number of respects. First, much of the administrative apparatus of audit and accountability that has been constructed and deployed in recent years has been driven by the strategic political objective of making the professional labour process much more visible, transparent, open, and assessable Power ; Exworthy and Halford ; Clarke, Gewirtz, and McLaughlin ; Llewellyn ; Broadbent and Laughlin ; Llewellyn and Northcott ; Reed ; Rosenthal ; Clarke ; Pollock a; Ackroyd, Kirkpatrick, and Walker In turn, these new sources and centres of specialist knowledge and skill have generated their own extensive bureaucratic control systems that have been legitimated by reference to the new policy priorities of market competition, consumer need, and performance quality.

Fourth, the networkbased governance regimes that have emerged from, and simultaneously reinforce, these structural and discursive changes incrementally build towards more stable and predictable systems of self-surveillance and selfdiscipline.

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They have laid it bear to external scrutiny and surveillance and, in so doing, they have managed to demystify, at least incrementally and partially, the claims to esoteric, abstract, universal and rational specialist knowledge and skill that have legitimated and protected established professional autonomy, power, and control.

These, well researched and well documented, forms of professional avoidance, subversion, and resistance Kitchener , ; Kitchener, Kirkpatrick, and Whipp ; Llewellyn ; McNulty and Ferlie ; Ogbonna and Harris document the substantial structural, political, and cultural obstacles that still obstinately stand in the way of the radical transformations envisaged by successive generations of managerialists.

Making higher education policy: a case study in governments at their best and worst

Indeed, as Townley et al. Pre-existing professional and regulative barriers to the further extension of market incentives, network governance, and intrusive work control technologies have been consistently breached by successive waves of modernizing reforms that seem to cause as many problems as they solve. As a governmental project for enhancing control at a distance, it has been structured around a centralising, consumerist and objectivist model of organizational control. These characteristics generate several distinctive instabilities.

Its centralism produces tensions around local responsiveness and innovation. Clarke This perceived hostility brings to the fore issues of professional autonomy and judgement, and contributes to wider problems about the recruitment, retention, and motivation of staff in public services. Its objectivism runs into organizational and public scepticism about the construction of evidence and judgements.


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Finally, its organization-centredness creates tension around the promotion and evaluation of collaboration and partnership working. These instabilities—forged at the intersection of governmental and political projects—have inhibited the construction of a new settlement of relationships between the public, the state, and public services. The operation of these new allocative and authoritative mechanisms i.

However much public service professionals may have contributed to their own downfall, through excessive material selfcentredness, ideological myopia and political acquiescence Reed , they have consistently underestimated the threat that neoliberal and neo-technocratic Managerialism had posed to the material and moral foundations on which their autonomy and authority has depended. In addition, it has been argued that the role of public service professionals in policy advocacy and formulation has been substantially weakened.

But the underlying dynamic and trajectory of change is clear and neither of these will favour the preservation of established professional quasi-monopolies, hierarchies, or identities in their conventional forms. Indeed, as Freidson contends, the former are likely to generate an underlying dynamic of interprofessional fragmentation and intra-professional polarization in which the material, political and cultural divisions and inequalities within and between professional associations and groups becomes more institutionally pronounced and embedded Freidson Indeed, UK universities and the higher education system in which they are historically and institutionally embedded have been presented with an escalating series of challenges 25 New Managerialism and Public Services Reform by the wider ideological, political, and discursive landscape that NM has indelibly shaped and sculpted.

In turn, these NM and NPM-inspired institutional and organizational changes have produced a very different sort of work culture and workplace environment for the majority of UKbased academics to that which was evident between the mids and the early s Halsey ; Dearlove ; Prichard and Wilmott ; Deem ; Trowler ; Scott ; Taylor ; Henkel ; Trowler ; Reed , a; Reed and Deem Many of these developments and discontinuities are discussed and analysed in greater detail in subsequent chapters of this book.

However, three of these are worth signalling as a prelude to more substantive exposition and analysis in subsequent chapters. Second, the longer-term implications of these organizational and managerial changes for professional academic cultures and identities need to be highlighted.

As indicated in previous discussion, the ideological drive and political logic underpinning NM and NPM were motivated by a consistent aspiration to legitimate and integrate a meta-narrative of strategic change, a programme of organizational reform, and a political technology of workplace control. Of course, it is routinely resisted, avoided, and adapted in all sorts of ways by all sorts of individuals and groups trying to get the day-to-day business of higher education done.

However not every academic has resisted it. But NM and NPM have ensured that a further academic retreat from engagement in institutional management, and with the contemporary structures, beliefs and practices through which that engagement is practised and legitimated, has occurred and is unlikely to be reversed on terms radically different from those imposed by contemporary managerialist doctrine and discourse.

Where does this leave the university and its core workers—the academics? The book now moves onto examine some of the recent history of the external and systemic environment for managerial work in UK universities, followed by a discussion of the nature of the contemporary university as an organization. This concluding discussion is situated within current developments concerning European universities.

The chapter included examining the theorization of NM and NPM and particularly the differences between neoinstitutional archetype theory and critical realist morphogenic theory , the history of the introduction of NM and NPM into public services in western countries, the kinds of strategies and control technologies embedded in different forms of NM and the associated contradictions of these, as well as their implications for organizational change. Finally, consideration was given to the process of hybridization of old and new forms of Managerialism and the linkages and discontinuities between professionalism and bureaucracy in public service organizations in Western countries.

The HE systems of each of the four countries in the UK each have some distinctive features.

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Until very recently, the most striking differences were those between Scotland and the rest of the UK but following the extension of devolved governmental powers to Wales and Northern Ireland 1 as well as Scotland in , differences are now appearing in all four countries. The chapter also considers, drawing on recent research data, how UK academics in management roles and career managers today, appear to interpret the recent systemic, organizational and other changes that have recently occurred in the academy.

As the previous chapter noted, Managerialism is not in itself a novel concept. The roots also included the effects on the organization and management of academic work of what Slaughter and Leslie call the enhanced resource-dependency of universities in receipt of public funding Slaughter and Leslie This dependency has brought greater emphasis on market factors, considerable effort devoted to extra income-generation and devolution of costs to academic units.

There are three further elements relevant to the growth of new forms of Managerialism in higher education. Firstly, one arose from the growth of corporate governance and management. Regionalization of HE within England has been one attempt at responding to regional differences in higher education, although so far with relatively little effect. The chapter also draws on examples from research and insider accounts of the management of UK universities from the late s onwards until the present day.

The study also explored the roles, practices, selection, learning, and support of manager-academics. Project Methodology, Data Analysis, and Ethics The research utilized qualitative methods and data-generation.

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Using qualitative methods ensured a good response from participants and also provided in-depth data. Pre universities have a charter to award degrees and are often highly research-intensive, although they are all also substantially involved in teaching. Post universities are independent corporations that were formerly polytechnics or colleges of advanced technology, which focused mainly on teaching a range of academic, semi-vocational, and vocational programmes to undergraduate students.

The post institutions did not receive core funding for research until after they became universities, although considerable research is conducted in the post sector, particularly applied research for industry and commerce. We tried 33 The Changing Context of University Knowledge Work to run most of the focus groups at existing meetings or conferences of the bodies concerned, which meant no one travelled especially for us. We also took care to seek permission from each individual participant. Discussions were taped, we also took notes and then the notes and tapes were transcribed and anonymized.

In phase 2 and 3, after making decisions on possible institutions representing a cross section of universities based on location, institutional type, size, mission, and curriculum mix universities were approached initially through Vice Chancellors or Principals. Next permission was sought to conduct interviews with manager-academics in phase 2 in all institutions, and focus groups and interviews in four phase 3 case study institutions with employees , all of which were taped and then transcribed.

We ensured that there was anonymization of individuals and any other individuals mentioned by name and institutions in the End of Award Report, conference papers and articles. This was particularly important in phase 3 where we were asking employees of four universities, from manual staff to academics, what they thought about how their institutions were managed. In terms of data analysis, all tapes were listened to carefully by the research team, who also read through the transcripts several times.