Research Network on University Governance
The university in Ontario and Canada has undergone major reforms over the last decade, not unlike those implemented, often with fragile and hesitant success, in the public sector in Canada and elsewhere. Under the yoke of managerialism, which favors a functionalist, technicity and apolitical vision of complex organizations, the reforms of the contemporary university have important consequences, particularly on: (1) the emergence of professional managers in the central administration and faculties; (2) the prioritization of teaching and research activities; (3) the amount, nature and extent of the administrative tasks of the professors; (4) the essence and foundation of the teacher-student relationship; (5) labor relations, hiring processes and job insecurity; (5) centralized planning of research activities; (7) evaluation of programs and teachers; (8) the financial profitability of units and programs; and (9) competition between units and faculties.
In other terms, the university's own identity as a community and privileged meeting place for teaching and research, (inter) disciplinary and professional training, and civic and democratic education, is sometimes called into question in an implicit and unconfirmed way, sometimes explicit and aggressive, in favor of a generic and impersonal corporate identity. These issues are the focus of research in university governance, to better articulate, understand and explain the nature and magnitude of these changes, as well as their impact on contemporary university in Ontario, in Canada and elsewhere in the world.