Academic Mobility, Internationalisation and Knowledge Transfer Processes

25 October 2010, 12:45 - 14:00

CRASSH

Part of the CRASSH Fellows Work-in-Progress seminar series.  All welcome, no registration necessary.  Sandwich lunch and refreshments provided.

Professor Louise Ackers (Law, University of Liverpool)

Professor Ackers' Fellowship builds on extensive research on researcher mobility and its contribution to the development of new knowledge and the transfer of this knowledge between individuals, institutions and countries.  It focuses on those forms of knowledge encompassed in the rather opaque concept of 'internationalisation'. Internationalisation can be interpreted narrowly to equate to recruitment in competitive labour markets  - the ability to attract and recruit the 'brightest and the best'. This form of internationalisation (cross-border labour mobility) can be measured through employment statistics. A broader definition would equate it to the accumulation and transfer of knowledge between individual researchers working in different research contexts (resource frameworks) such that the 'knowledge premium' is greater than the sum of its parts contributing to a 'new knowledge claim'. Internationalisation, in this wider perspective, is about building and using research relationships to enhance outcomes.  This approach is concerned with processes and relationships and defies mechanical measurement. Recent research on highly skilled migration has begun to examine the relationship between network-building and mobility. The concept of 'relationships' goes beyond a mechanistic notion of networks to convey the breadth and quality of activities supporting the sharing and translation of knowledge evident in research outcomes such as co-authorship or joint supervisions and research projects.   

This Fellowship will consider 'internationalisation' processes along a mobility/relationship continuum. At one end sits the migrant employee. They may retain strong links with researchers in the country/ies they have come from enriching their work. They may strengthen these through on-going travel or virtual networking. Or, they may not. They may build strong relationships in the host state or, they may not. At the other end of the continuum sits the apparently 'immobile' researcher on occasion pejoratively described as 'in-bred.'  They may have remained at the same institution since graduating. They may have few international relationships or outputs.  Or, they may be actively engaged in complex forms of professional mobility including short stays, visits and/or virtual relationships supporting active and intense international relationship-building leading to research or publishing collaborations. These are caricatures and many possibilities exist along the continua. The research will explore the relationship between mobility experience and internationalisation processes.

 

 

To access the Readings for the Work in Progress seminar, please contact Michelle Maciejewska.