Teaching partnerships in neoliberal times: Promoting collaboration or competition?

Journal article


King, E. and Cartney, P. 2022. Teaching partnerships in neoliberal times: Promoting collaboration or competition? Practice: Social Work in Action.
AuthorsKing, E. and Cartney, P.
Abstract

In 2015, Social Work Teaching Partnerships launched into a turbulent political and policy arena where a repositioning of social work education was taking place alongside the adoption of neoliberal ideologies promoting the operation of market forces within higher education nationally and globally.

This paper presents findings from 11 respondents to an online survey undertaken in England to explore factors that support and hinder partnership working between universities in Social Work Teaching Partnerships. Findings suggest some merit to partnership working, with closer working relationships in practice education, student placements and research. Data suggest that some Social Work Teaching Partnerships were able to form collegiate relationships despite the competitive positioning of universities. However, respondents also commented on operational barriers, such as communication problems and size of Social Work Teaching Partnerships that created difficulties for collaboration. Tensions resulting from working in a competitive market driven environment clearly emerged from the data with some partnerships not able to engage fully in collaborative working as a result.

This paper reflects on how the broader political and policy context influences the operationalisation of partnership working within Social Work Teaching Partnerships and suggests key avenues to explore further.

KeywordsSocial work education; Teaching partnership; Competition; Marketisation of higher education
Year2022
JournalPractice: Social Work in Action
PublisherTaylor & Francis
ISSN0950-3153
1742-4909
Related URLhttps://repository.canterbury.ac.uk/item/91877/teaching-partnerships-in-neoliberal-times-promoting-collaboration-or-competition
Publication process dates
Accepted18 Jul 2022
Deposited20 Jul 2022
Accepted author manuscript
License
File Access Level
Restricted
Output statusIn press
References

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Spolander, G., Engelbrecht, L., Martin, L., Strydom, M., Pervova, I., Marjanen, P., Tani, P., Sicora, A. and Adaikalam, F. 2014. ‘The Implications of Neoliberalism for Social Work: Reflections From a Six-Country International Research Collaboration.” International Social Work, 57 (4) 301-312

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