Informit article: The university does not think

While selected articles are available in full on this website, all Arena Quarterly, Arena Magazine and Arena Journal articles are available for purchase in PDF format from Informit.


The slow death of the university – as an institution serving the public good, as a place for independent thought, as a vehicle for critical and deep cultural inquiry – continues well into the era of the Turnbull government. As with climate change, there are a few deniers, but most people recognise that universities are not what they used to be. Like extreme weather events, there are occasional incidents that bring the university into the realm of public debate – government attempts to deregulate tuition fees, bids to sack academic staff for public utterances that might damage the university ‘brand’, or shambolic schemes to introduce ideologically driven research centres such as Bjorn Lomborg’s ‘consensus centre’. But, as with climate change, there’s a dual reaction that leads to inertia. For those directly affected by the scale of transformation, the crisis of the university seems almost overwhelming. For others, the rate of decline is incremental enough to be pushed to the edge of awareness.

Details / PDF:

The full-text PDF of this article can be purchased from Informit.

Support Arena

Independent publications and critical thought are more important than ever. Arena has never relied on or received government funding. It has sustained its activities largely through the voluntary work and funding provided by editors and supporters. If Arena is to continue and to expand its readership, we need your support to do it.