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Development of Teaching Academics in the Academic Labor Market in Germany


Natalia Karmaeva

This study is an empirical and a theoretical contribution to academic labor market research in the social and educational sciences. The main focus is the situation of young academics who teach at German universities. Both the role of research and teaching in the academic labor market as well as opportunities for professional development in academia and beyond for those who teach are investigated. The study reveals how structures of the academic labor market, including academic culture, affect career decisions and development opportunities of young academics. The findings demonstrate how academics reconstruct the relation between teaching and research in their practice and how they seek new ways in making teaching meaningful in their working lives. The monograph proposes a model for evaluating the agency of academics and identifies the potential for social innovations in academia.
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The review of research showed that junior academics are in a precarious situation and that their professional development demands attention in Germany (see introduction, chapter 1).

Academic work includes teaching, research and administration as the basic activities. The previous research findings and the empirical investigation in the present dissertation show that they were not similarly supported and promoted by the existing incentives for work (chapter 2). Thus, teaching had an inferior position to research and was seen as an activity constraining career development. The changing academic work also meant changing content and conditions of teaching: increasing workload, standardization of teaching. Good work in academia would involve strengthening the position of teaching and those who teach.

Academic work and development

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