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Open access

Lesley Wood, Ronald Barnett, and Penny Welch

Budd L. Hall and Rajesh Tandon (2021), Socially Responsible Higher Education: International Perspectives on Knowledge Democracy. Rotterdam, NL: Brill, 303pp., ISBN: 978-90-04-45907-6

Anke Schwittay (2021), Creative Universities: Reimagining Education for Global Challenges and Alternative Futures. Bristol: Bristol University Press, 200pp., ISBN: 978-1529213652

Catherine Bovill (2020) Co-creating Learning and Teaching: Towards Relational Pedagogy in Higher Education. St. Albans: Critical Publishing, 96pp., ISBN: 9781913063818

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Contested Greenspace Solidarities?

Asymmetric Valuation Compromises and Civic-Material Tensions in Copenhagen Allotment Gardens

Nicola C. Thomas and Anders Blok

Abstract

Urban allotment gardens constitute urban natures with a rich history as well as potential public redevelopment land. While many cities in Europe struggle to protect allotment gardens from competing land-use forces, in Copenhagen, allotments are classified as valuable urban nature and enjoy special protection. We analyze the social and political conditions and consequences of this unique situation. Taking a closer look at the governance arrangements and what we refer to as asymmetric civic-public compromises enabling the protection, we show how this is resulting in new material conflicts between civic and municipal actors. We argue that the conflicts are related to the unresolved issue of competing visions of civic, green, and market sustainability shaping contemporary urban development in Copenhagen and beyond and which are starkly revealed within allotment gardens.

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Daoist Political Ecology as Green Party Ideology

The Case of the Swedish Greens

Devin K. Joshi

Abstract

Green parties were once hailed as offering a “new politics” vis-à-vis the political establishment by proposing radical political, economic, and environmental reforms, but they have since transformed in many countries to become more moderate and pragmatic. While some doubt whether their ideology still contains any essential core, I contend that a unifying link can be found in the philosophy of the Daoist sage Laozi. I illustrate this by analyzing the party program of Miljöpartiet de Gröna (Sweden's Environmental Green Party), one of the world's most electorally successful green parties. As demonstrated here, this green party's current ideology strongly reflects key imperatives of Daoist political ecology revealing the philosophy's durability and attractiveness over time and its perceived relevance to pressing issues of sustainability and climate change.

Free access

Penny Welch and Susan Wright

Welcome to this special themed issue of Learning and Teaching: The International Journal of Higher Education in the Social Sciences in which a set of authors from Ethiopia, China, Indonesia, Finland and South Korea explore the internationalisation of higher education from the periphery and another group from Italy, New Zealand, Australia and the UK analyse market-making in higher education institutions. The articles in this special issue represent some of the collaborative results from an ‘Initial Training Network’ project funded by the EU Marie Skłodowska-Curie programme that analysed ‘Universities in the Knowledge Economy’ (UNIKE) in Europe and the Asia-Pacific Rim.1

Open access

Chris van der Borgh

This article looks at the everyday security practices of local residents in violent local orders, where capacities and strategies of state and non-state armed actors to produce regularity and stability are weak and contested. It discusses the case of gang-controlled neighborhoods in the metropolitan area of Greater San Salvador, El Salvador, in the years 2017–2018, when security “provision” of armed state and nonstate actors was weak and contested, and as a result civilians mostly took care of themselves. The article analyzes the main characteristics of local violent orders, the insecurity experiences of local residents, and the everyday practices of local residents to deal with these circumstances. It argues that in neighborhoods where security provision by state and non-state actors is weak and contested, everyday security practices of local residents are key to understanding the functioning and reproduction of the local forms of “disordered order.

Open access

Everyone’s an artist?

Class, precarity, and the distribution of creative labor

Natalie Morningstar

This article examines the endurance of traditional class labels among precarious workers in post-recession Dublin. It argues that tensions remain between creatives and non-creatives due to: (1) divergent class concepts, (2) a lack of social engagement, and (3) unequal access to economic, social, and cultural capital, which creatives mobilize to protect some highly vocational artistic labor. It is thus not a shared experience of the same kind of precarious exploitation that unites the precariat but a trap held in common, whereby self-actualization through labor is construed as a route to freedom. Drawing on Karl Marx’s theory of emancipation, I suggest that attempts to redress precarization should focus on undermining this encroachment of work into life, which I argue results in exploitation and alienation for all precarious workers.

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Glaciers in the Anthropocene

A Biocultural View

Daniel Gaudio and Mauro Gobbi

Abstract

Disappearing glaciers are one of the most evident signals of climate change of the current period in Earth's history, the Anthropocene. In this article, we discuss the side effects of the glacier melt from a biocultural standpoint, moving from the Southern European Alps to a global context. Specifically, we highlight what we are losing from a cultural and naturalistic perspective but also, paradoxically, what we could “gain” if we were able to understand more deeply, and with an interdisciplinary approach, glacial dynamics and their role for human society. Glaciers can teach us several stories, but we are quickly approaching the last chance to listen to them.

Open access

Nick Lewis, Susan Robertson, Miguel Antonio Lim, Janja Komljenovic, Chris Muellerleile, Cris Shore, and Tatyana Bajenova

Abstract

This collection of short essays presents and examines six vignettes of organisational change in British, New Zealand and European universities. Drawing on the social studies of economisation literature, formal research projects and auto-ethnographic insights, the authors detail profound changes in how knowledge is produced in universities. They examine policy documents, calculative techniques and management practices to illustrate how proliferating market rationalities, technologies and relations are reimagining university missions, reframing their practices and refashioning their subjects. Their vignettes demonstrate that market-making pressures are emerging from micro-scale socio-technical arrangements as well as altered funding models and external policy imperatives. They reveal the extent and detail of market-making pressures on academic practice in research and teaching. Finding ways to contest these pressures is imperative.

Open access

A mutable space

Identity in the ruins of a polyethnic town camp, Outback Australia

Alana Brekelmans

As that which troubles simplistic binaries, ruins provide an entry point for scholars to conceptualize time, space, and identity as multiple, fragmented, and mutable. Th is article contributes to these studies by interrogating Australian settler-colonial time-space narratives (chronotopes) of White dominance through engagement with counter-narratives of mutable materialities and identities. Through ethnography of a commemorative event in a rural Australian town, I show how peoples of mixed Aboriginal and Asian descent negotiated racialized ruins to reassert narrative agency. I argue narratives of identity—when reremembered through spatial understandings of multiple community membership, re-lived through embodied experiences, and re-collected through affective engagement with ruins—create a mutable space to disrupt settler-colonial chronotopes, revealing narratives of hybrid, polyethnic, and polyracial belongings in Australia.

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The OECD Water Governance Principles in Flood Risk Management

Understanding Conflicts and Frictions in Dutch Flood Protection

Nadine Keller, Barbara Tempels, and Thomas Hartmann

Abstract

The OECD Water Governance Principles provide a guideline for good water governance. However, these principles can conflict with each other when applied in practice. This contribution aims to understand which dilemmas arise and how such conflicts play out. It is explored in an in-depth case study on Dutch flood risk management in which conflicts between the principles emerge when applied to flood risk management practice. Interviews with water managers were used to collect data on which principles contradict each other and how these conflicts work out in practice. The study reveals that although the principles seem obvious, some principles indeed clash when applying them, while others do not lead to conflicts. Principles on efficiency, trust, and engagement have high potential for conflicts.