[iDC] re: "Praxis-based" PhDs

Simon Biggs s.biggs at eca.ac.uk
Wed Jan 17 04:10:19 EST 2007

The international dimension is important and Danny is right to remind us of
that. Research policy throughout Europe is being set and resourced more and
more through central European policy agencies, effecting traditionally
nationally determined domains, such as education. The Bologna Process, which
will see all European higher educational systems standardised on a single
system (surprisingly similar to the UK's), is now happening and
accelerating. These changes far exceed the issues we have been discussing

Research relationships between countries with significant research
infrastructures (the US comes top of course, followed by the UK) and
emerging research leaders, such as China, India and Korea, are also
critically important. Educational institutions are at the heart of this as
they are brokering these relationships at the all important personal level.
Relationships established between a student, perhaps from India, and a
supervisor, perhaps from Scotland, then go on to underpin international and
institutional relationships that can be of great importance.

This was being discussed on BBC Radio 4 on my way to college this morning.
The debate we are having on this list is part of a bigger debate about
knowledge and power which is not only going on in government and the upper
echelons of educational policy setting but publicly. These are issues
occupying a lot of people's thoughts as we move to a globalised economy
built not on trade in manufactured goods as much as knowledge. Art practice
occurs in this domain, as does research.

Most of the debate on this list so far has concerned issues around changes
in US advanced degrees, and that sort of makes sense as the list is owned by
a US based educator and this discussion is being moderated by a US based
academic. However, the international situation actually does effect the US
situation, even if when in the States the rest of the World seems a distant



On 17/1/07 02:58, "Danny Butt" <db at dannybutt.net> wrote:

> So I just think for those of us taking on this fight, it's bigger
> than even the very large struggles I know people like yourself have
> made just to get programmes off the ground in institutions and
> legislature. There is a need for more discussion about the effects
> and an opportunity to build some much-needed solidarity in agenda
> setting internationally (let's be clear - the hard science research
> agenda is set internationally), so I greatly value this discussion
> which is contributing to that shared understanding - and I'm learning
> a lot here too :)

Simon Biggs

simon at littlepig.org.uk
AIM: simonbiggsuk

Research Professor, Edinburgh College of Art

s.biggs at eca.ac.uk

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