Higher education and the institution of the university exist in time, their essential nature now continually subject to change: change in students, in knowledge, in structure and in their own communities and those they service. These changes are accompanied by a quickening of time, leading to a heightened intensity of academic life. Yet the nature of time in all the contemporary work on the university has been largely overlooked. This is an important omission and Universities in the Flux of Time has gathered leading academics whose contributions to the volume raise a debate as to the influence and use of time in the university. They do this in an exploration of how these changes are perceived in higher education and how these affect its temporality from local, national and global perspectives. By dealing with the time within the university, the book opens new spaces for the development of the university and civic society.

The book develops an interdisciplinary understanding of the temporal issues of engaging with the past, present and future of higher education and its institutions, through consideration of the increased speed demanded for the production of able students and innovative research, to the accountability pressures from central governments and commerce. Reflecting on these issues in the higher education sector, Universities in the Flux of Time is split into three parts, with each one addressing time and its multiple relationships with the university:

  • Past, present and future
  • Knowledge and time
  • Living with time

This volume will provide essential reading for those on higher education studies courses as well as a wider audience of managers, practitioners, policy makers, academics and students and from many disciplinary perspectives including sociology, organisation studies, social psychology and the philosophy of education.

chapter |6 pages


ByPaul Gibbs, Oili-Helena Ylijoki, Carolina Guzmán-Valenzuela, Ronald Barnett

part 1|70 pages

Past, present and future

chapter 1|23 pages

The University In The Epoch Of Digital Reason

Fast knowledge in the circuits of cybernetic capitalism
ByMichael A. Peters

chapter 2|14 pages

University Fashions

On ideas whose time has come
ByBarbara Czarniawska

chapter 3|11 pages

If Time Doesn'T Exist, Why Are We Learning About The Past?

ByPaul Gibbs

chapter 4|20 pages

Organizational Devolution

The old, new and future American research universities in the age of privatization
ByJohn Aubrey Douglass

part 1|58 pages

Knowledge and time

chapter 5|15 pages

When Innovation Becomes Conformist

Academic research in network time
ByRobert Hassan

chapter 6|14 pages

Conquered By Project Time?

Conflicting temporalities in university research
ByOili-Helena Ylijoki

chapter 7|13 pages

Different Times

Temporality, curriculum and powerful knowledge
BySue Clegg

chapter 8|14 pages

The Time Of Reason And The Ecological University

ByRonald Barnett

part 3|61 pages

Living with time

chapter 9|17 pages

Discovery And Delivery

Time schemas and the bureaucratic university
ByPeter Murphy

chapter 10|14 pages

Competing Narratives Of Time In The Managerial University

The contradictions of fast time and slow time
ByCarolina Guzmán-Valenzuela, Roberto Di Napoli

chapter 11|14 pages

Higher Education And An Ethic Of Time

ByMarianna Papastephanou

chapter 12|14 pages

Academic Time And The Time Of Academics

ByAngela Brew