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Wenner - Gren International Series Volume 86 

Trust in Universities

Edited by Lars Engwall and Peter Scott

Year of publication: 2013 
ISBN: 978-185578-194-8

The university’s reliance on trust is double-edged. On the one hand, teaching in higher education is designed to promote critical enquiry in the Socratic tradition of “I know that I do not know”. Research is also based on ceaseless questioning of accepted wisdom. In that sense universities are the enemies of ‘trust’. On the other hand, they must be trusted in order to continue to occupy an autonomous space within civil society. Without a high degree of ‘trust’ their capacity to fulfil their critical and speculative functions will be eroded. The growth of mass higher education systems, the managerial revolution within institutions, the development of a market culture (and behaviours), the emphasis on professional training and vocational outcomes and the advance of the ‘knowledge society’ focused on the impact of research – all pose serious threats to traditional notions of ‘trust’ in higher education. This book, which has grown out of a symposium jointly organized by the Academia Europaea and the Wenner-Gren Foundations, explores these growing tensions between the autonomy of the university and the accountability of higher education to wider society.





Part 1: Basic Considerations 

Setting the scene 
Lars Engwall and Peter Scott 

Trust as a necessary attitude in learning and research 
Ray Spier, with comments by Jens Erik Fenstad 

Public trust and institutions of higher learning: implications for professional responsibility 
Stephanie J. Bird, with comments by Terri Kim 

Accountability, the Magna Charta Universitatum and the Bologna Declaration 
André Oosterlinck, with comments by Alessandro Cavalli 

Part II: Universities and the Audit Society 

The university in the audit society: on accountability, trust and markets 
Jürgen Enders, with comments by Göran Hermerén 

Audits and the university: the restoration of personal trust in higher education 
Michael Huber, with comments by Kerstin Sahlin 

The loss of trust and how to regain it: performance measures and entrepreneurial universities 
Peter Weingart, with comments by Rolf Torstendahl 

Part III: Universities and the Media 

Higher education and the media: a meeting of minds? 
John O’Leary, with comments by Thorsten Nybom 

The last endangered species 
Robert L. Park, with comments by Denis Weaire 

The integrity of creating, communicating and consuming information online in the context of Higher Education Institutions 
Simon Rogerson, with comments by Robert B. Kvavik 

Part IV: Universities and Markets 

Branding the university: relational strategy of identity construction in a competitive field 
Gili S. Drori, Guiseppe Delmestri and Achim Oberg, with comments by Inge-Bert Täljedal 

Higher Education Institutions between a global and a local challenge 
Giovanni Natile, with comments by Erik De Corte 

Universities struggling with accountability and trust: insights from university–industry interactions in innovative foods 
Maureen McKelvey, with comments by Dan Brändström 

Part V: Conclusions 

Trust in universities, audit society, the media and markets 
Lars Engwall and Peter Scott 


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