Hard, soft, control: the 'technological triumvirate' of university-industry alliances

Craig, Stewart (2012) Hard, soft, control: the 'technological triumvirate' of university-industry alliances. Ed.D thesis, University of Glasgow.

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Printed Thesis Information: https://eleanor.lib.gla.ac.uk/record=b2956195


In the past few decades the university has increasingly exploited the commercial potential of select experimental data generated in its molecular biology research laboratories. The university protects such data with intellectual property (IP) rights, and licenses the use of this IP, or sells it outright, to the pharmaceutical industry. Such IP often details the discovery of a novel drug candidate that has potential to treat or cure human disease. Through my eyes as a university lab educator, I argue in this dissertation that the contemporary cultural trend of the university’s sale of its research data to industry was catalyzed by two key concurrent events of late 20th century: a knowledge economy and neoliberalism. Utilizing technology as an analytical lens, I show that key hard and soft technologies gave rise to a knowledge economy; this provided the university with the prime technological platform for the heightened exposure, and conveyance, of its research data to industry. I argue that the contemporary political doctrine of neoliberalism is a control technology because it molds the public sector – including the university – into the competitive free market tendencies of the private sector; this provided the university with the prime economic platform for the sale of its research data to industry. Moreover, I demonstrate that the university’s sale of its select research data to industry has resulted in stronger alliances between the university and industry. Crucially, such alliances, I argue, have a profound impact on American higher education, on two levels: 1) the evolution of the university from a historic to a postmodern institution; and 2) fundamental changes in the nature of learning in the university research lab associated with the rise of the postmodern university. The dissertation concludes by considering various measures that may be used by the lab educator to mitigate these changes in learning in the postmodern university research lab.

Item Type: Thesis (Ed.D)
Qualification Level: Doctoral
Subjects: L Education > L Education (General)
L Education > LB Theory and practice of education > LB2300 Higher Education
Colleges/Schools: College of Social Sciences > School of Education
Supervisor's Name: Enslin, Prof. Penny
Date of Award: 2012
Depositing User: Mr Stewart Craig
Unique ID: glathesis:2012-3777
Copyright: Copyright of this thesis is held by the author.
Date Deposited: 06 Dec 2012
Last Modified: 10 Dec 2012 14:10
URI: https://theses.gla.ac.uk/id/eprint/3777

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