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Piper, Laurence
Publications (7 of 7) Show all publications
Sunnemark, L., Sunnemark, F., Dahlquist, K., Gahnström, E., Assmo, P. & Piper, L. (2023). Bridging theory and practice through Work-Integrated Learning (WIL): critical perspectives on the conceptualisations of WIL at a university in Sweden. Critical Studies in Education, 1-18
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Bridging theory and practice through Work-Integrated Learning (WIL): critical perspectives on the conceptualisations of WIL at a university in Sweden
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2023 (English)In: Critical Studies in Education, ISSN 1750-8487, E-ISSN 1750-8495, p. 1-18Article in journal (Refereed) Epub ahead of print
Abstract [en]

In this article we interrogate how University of Sweden (UoS), the leading Work-integrated learning (WIL) university in Sweden, represents WIL publicly, discussing this in relation to higher education’s changing role within an increasingly knowledge-based capitalism, in which knowledge and research become subsumed under demands for market utility and student employability. Through analysis of WIL literature we distil a theory-practice ‘gap’ with spatial, institutional, epistemological and pedagogical dimensions that WIL as a field of educational practice tries to ‘bridge’. We use this conception to deconstruct how (UoS) presents WIL to potential students, partners, employers, and society at large. We find that while the university at the central level presents WIL as a synergistic and multi-dimensional activity that bridges the theory/practice divide to produce ‘advanced knowledge’ and employable students, the actual educational programs articulate WIL in a manner which privileges practical usability and employability over theoretical knowledge, in line with an academic capitalist focus on utility. Further, there is a significant difference in how vocational and academic programmes implement WIL. Whereas WIL components seem relatively easily integrated into professional programs present, academic programs must undertake advanced discursive manoeuvres to incorporate WIL’s principles into what would otherwise be quite theory-focused programs.

Keywords
Work-integrated learning; higher education; theory; practice; vocational; academic capitalism; deconstruction; employability
National Category
Learning
Research subject
Work Integrated Learning
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hv:diva-21139 (URN)10.1080/17508487.2023.2294462 (DOI)001129228700001 ()2-s2.0-85179989827 (Scopus ID)
Note

CC -BY 4.0

Available from: 2023-12-28 Created: 2023-12-28 Last updated: 2024-01-02
Piper, L., Dahlquist, K. & Sunnemark, F. (2023). Learning for utopia: from banal to critical Work-Integrated Learning (WIL). The Journal for Critical Education Policy Studies, 21(1), 225-259
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Learning for utopia: from banal to critical Work-Integrated Learning (WIL)
2023 (English)In: The Journal for Critical Education Policy Studies, ISSN 2051-0969, E-ISSN 1740-2743, Vol. 21, no 1, p. 225-259Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

While long part of vocational and professional training, forms of practice-based education like Work-integrated learning (WIL) arenow spreading to academic disciplines like Political Science. The pedagogical entailed in WIL is that student learning requires the theoretical knowledge and practice of both the classroom and theworkplace, and therefore pledges better employability for graduates. At the same time, this promise entails a potential threat to disciplinesthat may call into question the assumptions of market and staterelations. The question thus emerges: is it possible to do critical WIL,and what would it look like? This paper makes a normative case that a critical WIL is both desirable and possible by turning to Hanna Arendt and Richard Turner to differentiate ‘banal’ from ‘critical’education. It further argues that any ‘critical’ educationalprogramme must be based on three principles. First, students must learn about how social systems work and how to be successful inthem, but they must also learn to critically reflect on the systemsthemselves, and to do so in normative terms linked to ending domination. Second, are students required to develop both thedispositions and attributes required for working life, and those required for acting to end domination. Finally, there must besufficient institutional independence of the programme from its partner institutions to protect the critical WIL agenda. These claims are illustrated through reference to a real-world attempt toinstitutionalise WIL in a Political Studies Masters programme inSweden.

Keywords
Work-integrated learning, Hanna Arendt, Richard Turner, banal education, critical education, utopia
National Category
Learning
Research subject
Work Integrated Learning
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hv:diva-19899 (URN)000975069200008 ()2-s2.0-85163278719 (Scopus ID)
Available from: 2023-04-21 Created: 2023-04-21 Last updated: 2024-01-04Bibliographically approved
Piper, L., Dahlquist, K., Sunnemark, F. & Assmo, P. (2023). Rethinking WIL for an academic discipline: the model of Work Integrated Political Studies (WIPS). Cogent Education, 10(1), Article ID 2191397.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Rethinking WIL for an academic discipline: the model of Work Integrated Political Studies (WIPS)
2023 (English)In: Cogent Education, E-ISSN 2331-186X, Vol. 10, no 1, article id 2191397Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The article develops a model for how an academic discipline like Political Studies can embrace work-integrated learning (WIL) to the benefit of students, the discipline, and wider society by interpreting WIL in relation to discipline-specific forms of knowledge and knower. The model is of a new Master’s in WIL in Political Studies (WIPS) at University West, Sweden, an institution that is experimenting with the idea of WIL as a discipline beyond the mainstream framing of WIL as pedagogy only. In this innovative context, three ideas are central to WIPS. First, the content of WIPS is about research knowledge, rather than Political Studies knowledge. Second, drawing on political philosophy, the important relationship between theory or science (episteme) and practice (techne) is framed in terms of an additional concept of practical knowledge (phronesis) regarding the particulars of political action to equitable ends and wisdom (sophia) in regard to the philosophical and ethical nature of those ends. Third, WIPS re-thinks student learning in ontological ways that focus on the capabilities of the political knower. In sum, WIPS frames WIL as “reflective practice on research-intensive political work”, offering a novel and enriched theoretical model of higher education learning of interest to other academic disciplines looking to embrace WIL.

Keywords
work-integrated learning, vocational and academic subjects, theory and practice, knowledge and knowers, pedagogy, discipline
National Category
Learning Pedagogy
Research subject
Work Integrated Learning
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hv:diva-19783 (URN)10.1080/2331186x.2023.2191397 (DOI)000949564000001 ()2-s2.0-85150522656 (Scopus ID)
Note

This open access article is distributed under a Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY) 4.0 license.

Available from: 2023-03-22 Created: 2023-03-22 Last updated: 2024-01-08
Sunnemark, F., Lundqvist-Westin, W., Assmo, P. & Piper, L. (2022). Achieving Quality Education through Internationalization using Digital Technology: Reflections on a Collaborative International Masters Programme in Work-Integrated Political Studies. In: International Conference on Work Integrated Learning: Abstract Book. Paper presented at WIL'22 International Conference on Work Integrated Learning, 7-9 December 2022, University West, Trollhättan, Sweden (pp. 72-73). Trollhättan: University West
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Achieving Quality Education through Internationalization using Digital Technology: Reflections on a Collaborative International Masters Programme in Work-Integrated Political Studies
2022 (English)In: International Conference on Work Integrated Learning: Abstract Book, Trollhättan: University West , 2022, p. 72-73Conference paper, Oral presentation with published abstract (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

In recent decades, internationalization has become an important component of higher education for universities. The rationale behind the internationalizing of university courses and programs varies, depending on focus and interest, with some being of more marketing/economical character and other more concerned to deepen the quality of higher education. Irrespective of the main reasons behind the process, the internationalization of higher education tends to expand even further, not least due to the possibilities connected to digital technology.Indeed, in more recent times the Covid-19 pandemic, has deeply digitalised educational and working life, raising deep questions not just about the modalities of learning, but the possibilities of new kinds of learning too. It is this concern that is the ma in focus of this paper: in what ways does deepening digitalisation enable internationalisation, and what are some of the dynamics, positive or negative, associated with this new trend?This paper answers this question through an initial high-level study of a joint international master’s program in Work Integrated Political Studies (WIPS), developed between University West (UW), Sweden, and the University of Western Cape (UWC), South Africa. The collaboration is unique in that it introduces new academic ways of learning and substantive content, formed through the development of Work Integrated Learning (WIL) as an academic subject and postgraduate degree. Central to WIL is the idea that learning happens equally through doing real world tasks as much as through traditional teaching, and this involves workplace as well as University activities. Consequently, and important part of the WIPS programme is a final year research internship, integrated with a compilation thesis, which provides the students with a possibility to study and conduct research on real world challenges, for a host organization. 

The paper employs an analytical framework using six concepts from the literature: (i) neo-liberal versus (ii) better quality education; (ii) pedagogically integrated a nd (iv) accessible digital technology; (iv) learning through doing as well as teaching; as well as (v) better life readiness.

The internationalisation literature highlights the distinction between the development of programmes aimed to secure more short-term, elite status and financial ends, and those orientated to better quality education through longer term, multicultural engagement of difference. This gives the first two concepts to look for: neo -liberal internationalisation versus internationalisation for better quality education. The digitalisation literature notes the importance of digital technologies that are thoughtfully integrated into a coherent pedagogical approach, and that are accessible to users, whether through public infrastructure or skills development. This gives the pedagogically integrated and accessible digital technologies. Finally, the WIL literature identifies an approach to education that integrates traditional teaching with real world practice, through synergies between the university, the student and the workplace, and that better prepares students for life after the University. This highlights the learning through doing as well as teaching and better life readiness concepts. Based on the primary data gathered from students and staff at both Universities during the first year of the masters, the paper demonstrates how digital technology, complemented with student and staff exchange, helps make the programme a more international, and a more educational environment. Interestingly, this remains true, even while the collaboration between Sweden and South Africa exposes real and important differences in practices and meanings of university teaching, working life and the significance of employability across context – indeed, it is the confrontation of these differences from which much new learning emerges. At the same time, there are limitations or challenges to internationalisation using digitalisation, and a key one is the uneven access to digital infrastructure across the two contexts, a s well as the limitations to boding in an online only environment. The article concludes by arguing that to develop a truly international educational environment, digital technologies should also be organized alongside real-world interactions in a way that enhances students’ interaction, nvolvement, and feeling of belonging. Done correctly, long-term sustainable international collaboration using digital technology, and thereto connected pedagogics, can bring the world closer, and can also reduce the economic and environmental cost of internationalization.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Trollhättan: University West, 2022
Keywords
Work Integrated Learning, Internationalisation, Digitalisation, Partnership, Education, Research
National Category
Other Social Sciences not elsewhere specified Pedagogy Learning
Research subject
Work Integrated Learning
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hv:diva-19565 (URN)9789189325302 (ISBN)
Conference
WIL'22 International Conference on Work Integrated Learning, 7-9 December 2022, University West, Trollhättan, Sweden
Note

The general theme of the conference is: “WIL in the service of society”

Available from: 2023-01-11 Created: 2023-01-11 Last updated: 2023-06-09Bibliographically approved
Piper, L. & Von Lieres, B. (2022). Learning to become change agents through international collaboration: insights and challenges from the Global Classroom Initiative. In: International Conference on Work Integrated Learning: Abstract Book. Paper presented at WIL'22 International Conference on Work Integrated Learning, 7-9 December 2022, University West,Trollhättan, Sweden (pp. 52-53). Trollhättan: University West
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Learning to become change agents through international collaboration: insights and challenges from the Global Classroom Initiative
2022 (English)In: International Conference on Work Integrated Learning: Abstract Book, Trollhättan: University West , 2022, p. 52-53Conference paper, Oral presentation with published abstract (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This paper engages with the ambition of some forms of work-integrated learning (WIL) programmes to produce graduates who are not just well equipped for the world of work, but who are also capable of being change agents to bring about a more sustainable and democratic world. More specifically, we explore an innovative pedagogic practice termed the ‘Global Classroom Initiative’ (GCI) that has been piloted between colleagues at the University of Toronto, Canada, University West, Sweden, and in various iterations, the University of Stellenbosch, and the University of the Western Cape in South Africa. The key focus of the paper is on the impact of the GCI experience on the disposition of participants to act as democratic citizens. In exploring this research problem, the paper draws on the views of participating students, facilitators, and the organising team over three iterations of the GCI. Our initial findings are that the GCI has a significant and even profound impact on participants express desire to act for sustainability, but it is unclear how enduring this view may be, and whether our findings are impacted by the self-selection into the programme of students already inclined to be activists.

The mainstream approach to WIL is a pedagogic one where students learn both through traditional teaching and practical doing, and this learning occurs both at the university and in the workplace, to better prepare graduates for working life. However, a great variety of WIL approaches exist, and some, such as at University West (Högskolan Väst) in Sweden, include the ambition to produce graduates who are better prepared for life in ge neral, and who are empowered to be change agents for a more sustainable and democratic world (Sunnemark et al 2022: forthcoming). Thus, the WIL process is orientated both to producing new kinds of knowledge but also a new kind of knower. This knower may even be deeply critical of the status quo and desire to bring about a more just world (Piper et al 2022: forthcoming). 

In the context of this framing of WIL at University West as committed to producing graduates who are change agents for democracy and sustainability, over the last 18months we have been experimenting with the ‘Global Classroom Initiative’ (GCI). While the concept of a global classroom long exists in American secondary schooling where it is associated with the Model UN programme (UN 2008) and has also been used at post-secondary level as a space for international engagement between University students around research (see https://globalmaryland.umd.edu/content/welcome-global-classrooms), the approach adopted in the GCI is distinctive. Thus, while it is international like many other versions, and it happens online, as most other versions do, it is also explicitly conceived as a space orientated to inspiring active citizenship – agency – among the participants, who must collaborate around a tangible project as the outcome of the engagement. Furthermore, it is underwritten by a normative commitment to sustainability and democracy too, and thus is well-suited to express desire by Högskolan Väst that WIL graduates become change agents for these social goods. Indeed, a key feature of the design of the GCI is that it follows a design theory model that is deliberately horizontal and participatory (Manzini 2015). Thus, while the process of the GCIs is design and facilitated, and do include some background academic reading, academic staff do not participate. Rather there is some input from various civil society organizations or activists to give examples of the kind of work they do, and then it is up to the participants, working in teams, to frame the problem as they see fit, and design a practical project to address it, one that they can implement where they live. Thus, the focus is on ownership of the whole process by participants, and the generation of an actionable outcome.

The paper reflects on the experiences of two GCIs conducted to date, and whether they do contribute to making graduates change agents. To this end, we draw on the views of participants, especially the students who have been through the process, but also the facilitator team and supporting academic staff. While our findings are largely positive there are two major caveats: first it is hard to judge how enduring the commitment to being a change agent is, especially in a world of work that does not necessarily support it. Second, to date the recruitment for our GCI events has been through voluntary and open calls. So, we cannot rule out that we students already likely to be change agents self-select into the events. Going forward however, we are institutionalising the GCI as part of a module at University West, and this should provide a more robust test of the innovation. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Trollhättan: University West, 2022
Keywords
WIL, international collaboration, global classroom, change agent, design theory, democratic citizenship, sustainability
National Category
Pedagogy Social Sciences Interdisciplinary Learning
Research subject
Work Integrated Learning
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hv:diva-19558 (URN)9789189325302 (ISBN)
Conference
WIL'22 International Conference on Work Integrated Learning, 7-9 December 2022, University West,Trollhättan, Sweden
Note

The general theme of the conference is: “WIL in the service of society”

Available from: 2023-01-11 Created: 2023-01-11 Last updated: 2023-06-09Bibliographically approved
Anciano, F. & Piper, L. (2022). Localising governance in the African city: a grounded model of multiple and contending forms of security governance in Hout Bay, Cape Town. Commonwealth and Comparative Politics, 60(3), 298-320
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Localising governance in the African city: a grounded model of multiple and contending forms of security governance in Hout Bay, Cape Town
2022 (English)In: Commonwealth and Comparative Politics, ISSN 1466-2043, E-ISSN 1743-9094, Vol. 60, no 3, p. 298-320Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The paper articulates a model of urban governance, developed through emergent analysis of the rulers, methods, rules and logics evident in the practices of security governance in Hout Bay, Cape Town. Informed by the concept of hybrid governance, this grounded theorising draws on extensive fieldwork on security governance practices in a complex urban neighbourhood to present a model of multiple and sometimes contending forms of governance that include, but are not limited to, bureaucratic, market, developmental, network and informal governance. Our model emerges from a critique of top-down approaches to understanding governance that starts with the state, institutions and law, or approaches that primarily focus on formal partnerships between the state and business or other social partners. The view from above can miss important aspects of how residents are governed ‘from below’ and informally. Hence it is impossible to understand from the formal, and in advance of grounded research, exactly how many places in urban Africa are governed. Exposing the particular and local forms of governance in urban Africa can support improved forms of service delivery and citizen’s experiences of living in their city. In addition, while our model may be relevant in other places, more important is the methodology of identifying the rulers and methods, but especially the rules and logics of practice, to surface the specific, and complex, forms of governance in an urban place.

Keywords
Urban governance; hybrid governance; informality; security governance; South Africa
National Category
Other Social Sciences not elsewhere specified Economic Geography
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hv:diva-19391 (URN)10.1080/14662043.2022.2082676 (DOI)000829871200001 ()2-s2.0-85134687994 (Scopus ID)
Available from: 2022-11-29 Created: 2022-11-29 Last updated: 2022-12-22Bibliographically approved
Piper, L. (2020). Development and implementation of the new International Master’s Programme in Work Integrated Political Studies. In: Kristina Johansson (Ed.), VILÄR: 3–4 December 2020 University West,Trollhättan. Abstracts. Paper presented at VILÄR. 3–4 December 2020 University West,Trollhättan (pp. 23-24). Trollhättan: Högskolan Väst
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Development and implementation of the new International Master’s Programme in Work Integrated Political Studies
2020 (English)In: VILÄR: 3–4 December 2020 University West,Trollhättan. Abstracts / [ed] Kristina Johansson, Trollhättan: Högskolan Väst , 2020, p. 23-24Conference paper, Oral presentation with published abstract (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The presentation details the development of a new masters in Work-Integrated Political Studies developed in collaboration between the Department of Political  Studies at the University of the Western Cape in South Africa, and the International Programme in Politics and Economics at University West, Sweden. The Masters is designed as a two-year programme, with the first year taught, and the second year a research placement in a host organisation in government or civil society conducting applied research for the host. The research tasks for the host will be developed between the student, host and supervisor in the first year preceding the internship and written into an individual study plan. During the course of the internship students will also have take a module reflecting on the internship in all aspects, as well as regular meetings with supervisors. Data from the research tasks will also serve as the basis for the Masters’ thesis, but will require additional analysis in respect of literature review and theory, both of which are completed prior to the placement.

The plan is to develop a programme that offers more rounded training of the student, and better integrates students into the world of work, and strengthens relations between the University and the wider society. In addition, the programme has an international dimension which allows for the placement of students in multiple countries, and the potential exchange of staff and sharing of resources across continents. The hope is that the programme will eventually lead to a PhD in WorkIntegrated Political Studies too.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Trollhättan: Högskolan Väst, 2020
Keywords
Work-Integrated Political Studies
National Category
Learning
Research subject
Work Integrated Learning
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hv:diva-16233 (URN)978-91-88847-86-7 (ISBN)
Conference
VILÄR. 3–4 December 2020 University West,Trollhättan
Available from: 2021-01-20 Created: 2021-01-20 Last updated: 2021-01-20Bibliographically approved
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