Navigating Tricky Terrain: Early Career Academics Charting a Research Trajectory in the Neoliberal University
International Perspectives on Emerging Trends and Integrating Research-based Learning across the Curriculum
ISBN: 978-1-80043-477-6, eISBN: 978-1-80043-476-9
Publication date: 20 January 2021
The current book chapter seeks to respond to the existing literature on early career researchers, using an autoethnographic approach to further unravel the crossroads of identity formation, research politics, and successful promotion through the eyes of early career researchers. Combining autobiography and ethnography, we systematically analyze our own experiences to make sense of wider social and political practices. Ellis, Adams, and Bochner (2010) remind us that autoethnography is not to be dismissed as a form of self-therapy but is to be presented in a rigorous manner as other research forms by carefully justifying the data sources and techniques, analyzing the data and crafting the findings. Our sources were both found texts (e.g., university policies) and created texts (our journal entries and personal communications). Using analytic techniques such as highlighting critical incidents or epiphanies, we structured coherent narratives to illuminate the complexity and uncertainty of the lives of early career academics. This chapter’s focus on early career researcher experiences makes poignant commentary on neoliberalism’s impact on and within higher education. The chapter concludes with the authors’ reflections on the dilemmas of academic and research choices made within the limitations of institutional structures, processes, and systems that shape career trajectories.
Alansari, M., Tatebe, J. and Mutch, C. (2021), "Navigating Tricky Terrain: Early Career Academics Charting a Research Trajectory in the Neoliberal University", Sengupta, E. and Blessinger, P. (Ed.) International Perspectives on Emerging Trends and Integrating Research-based Learning across the Curriculum (Innovations in Higher Education Teaching and Learning, Vol. 36), Emerald Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 101-118. https://doi.org/10.1108/S2055-364120210000036008
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