Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Day 23 - Towards a manifesto

Tonight, I just wanted to establish the beginnings of a manifesto - what I think I'm aiming for in my job.
I've hinted at it in previous posts, and it's become a theme of my interactions with colleagues recently.

I want to become an integrated academic.
  • This means beginning to smooth over the crises and hiatuses of the academic year and approach something like a consistent even keel;
  • This means carrying on research projects throughout the year concurrently with teaching, to the detriment of neither;
  • This means establishing the groundwork for a sensible work-life balance;
  • This means not being a slave to email;
  • This means fire-proofing my life from the disorganisation of others and from a culture of last-minuteness;
  • This means being in control of my workload.
At the moment, I have no firm idea of how I am going to accomplish these goals, and many of them are going to be trial and error. It may turn out that it isn't possible, but I won't believe that until I fail.

My biggest concern with the amount of pressure that academics are put under is where this pressure really originates. I know colleagues who have been put under intolerable pressure to fulfill bad interpretations of university policy, or just bad university policy, but for the majority of it, we do it to ourselves. And on a larger scale, as academics, we do it to each other.

I have to believe that we have the power to change this, even if it is in small ways.
And when we do, we will be on the road to professionalising a career that is in danger of becoming industralised.

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