The role of transnational networking for higher education academics
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© 2015 HERDSA. Amidst rapid socio-economic change, higher education (HE) academics across the world face major challenges to its organisation, finance and management. This paper discusses the role of transnational networking in higher education. Data from 40 interviews with geographically distributed academics engaged in learning and teaching transnational networks (TNNs) were analysed. The findings show that in an increasingly globalised higher education system, transnational networking goes beyond conference attendance to entail multiple combinations of offline and online activities. We do not think that current concepts of communities of practice or networks of practice accurately describe these phenomena. Instead, we suggest that these activities entail different and varying levels of tangibility, more accurately defined by us as TNNs. Moreover, we argue that the term ‘network’ in this context facilitates the individualistic pursuit of a career increasingly essential in a pressurised higher education environment.
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