Advancing theory on knowledge governance in universities: A case study of a higher education merger

Mehdi Safavi, Lars Håkanson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The deep structure of university knowledge governance systems is uncharted. In an exploratory case study of a university merger with an art college, this study inductively examines how knowledge governance structures in universities affect (and are affected by) the creation and passing on of knowledge. We found the university governance system to provide advantages primarily for the management of core academic activities of knowledge creation through articulation and for the passing on and dissemination of knowledge through replication. It is also conducive to the coordination and integration of specialized administrative expertise. However, despite insistent calls for more interdisciplinary research, it tends to discourage the pursuit of innovative, interdisciplinary combinations of knowledge. These findings shed light on the characteristics of the deep structure of university knowledge governance systems in academic work, namely academic staff identification with, and allegiance to, individual disciplines, as well as the independence of academic work from its particular organizational setting.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)500-523
Number of pages24
JournalStudies in Higher Education
Volume43
Issue number3
Early online date13 Jun 2016
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 13 Feb 2018

Keywords

  • Universities
  • Knowledge Governance
  • Knowledge Combination
  • Interdisciplinarity
  • Epistemic Communities
  • Mergers

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