Opportunity or Exploitation?

Colleen Flaherty, Inside Higher Ed, Apr 25, 2018
Commentary by Stephen Downes

This the sort of innovation that would be classified as "disruptive" were is accompanied with an app and some Silicon Valley VC funding (which may yet happen; don't rule it out). Southern Illinois University i proposing a "zero-hour adjunct" status, which is essentially a way of appointing alumni to volunteer positions doing things like "service on graduate student thesis, departmental or university committees, along with lectures in graduate or undergraduate courses and collaborating on grant proposals and research projects." The objection from faculty, of course, is that "The issue is that SIU is devaluing a portion of academic labor to $0." But if the university is able to find suitably qualified people willing to do the work for free, why would they continue paying people?

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