Treason of the intellectuals

October 8, 2009

It is sad and disappointing when vice-chancellors of distinguished universities choose to endorse league tables ("'Table of tables' offers sector clearer picture", 24 September).

Quite apart from the damage they do to any hope of creating a genuinely diverse system - something Times Higher Education elsewhere celebrates - league-table methodologies break most of the scientific rules for which research and the academy supposedly stand. Yet rather than excoriate them as unscientific, vice-chancellors can always be found to endorse them. Isn't there a French phrase, la trahison des clercs, that describes this situation?

Roger Brown, Professor of higher education, Liverpool Hope University.

You've reached your article limit.

Register to continue

Registration is free and only takes a moment. Once registered you can read a total of 3 articles each month, plus:

  • Sign up for the editor's highlights
  • Receive World University Rankings news first
  • Get job alerts, shortlist jobs and save job searches
  • Participate in reader discussions and post comments

Have your say

Log in or register to post comments

Most Commented

James Fryer illustration (27 July 2017)

It is not Luddism to be cautious about destroying an academic publishing industry that has served us well, says Marilyn Deegan

Jeffrey Beall, associate professor and librarian at the University of Colorado Denver

Creator of controversial predatory journals blacklist says some peers are failing to warn of dangers of disreputable publishers

Hand squeezing stress ball
Working 55 hours per week, the loss of research periods, slashed pensions, increased bureaucracy, tiny budgets and declining standards have finally forced Michael Edwards out
Kayaker and jet skiiers

Nazima Kadir’s social circle reveals a range of alternative careers for would-be scholars, and often with better rewards than academia

hole in ground

‘Drastic action’ required to fix multibillion-pound shortfall in Universities Superannuation Scheme, expert warns