International Studies in Widening Participation

The International Studies in Widening Participation is an open access journal established in late 2013. The journal aims to publish scholarly work on equity, access and excellence in widening student participation in tertiary education globally. The journal aims to engage academics, practitioners, and students on a wide range of topics related to widening participation.



Call for Papers: Volume 2, 2015


Special Issue: Social justice in the enterprise university: global perspectives on theory, policy, ethics and critical practice

Guest editors

Dr Anna Bennett, Dr Rachel Buchanan and Dr Erica Southgate (The University of Newcastle, Australia)

Special Issue: Social justice in the enterprise university: global perspectives on theory, policy, ethics and critical practice

Rationale and themes
The global rise of the enterprise university (Marginson and Considine, 2000) reflects the increasing dominance of neo-liberal discourses within the field of education (Connell, 2012; Bennett et al. 2012). Although seemingly economic in focus, neo-liberalism is a comprehensive socio-political paradigm that informs our sense of ethical responsibility and social justice. Neo-liberal concepts of timeliness, accountability, individual entrepreneurship, efficiency, calculability, productivity and competitive achievement permeate universities and, some would argue, the subjectivities that higher education longs to produce (Clegg, 2010)

This Special Issue seeks papers that grapple with the philosophical, social, theoretical and practical aspects of social justice and equity work within the context of the enterprise university. Rather than focus on a lament of the past and associated descriptions of the neo-liberal environment, the Special Issue will explore the various forms of social justice and equity work that are conducted in this landscape and the opportunities and tensions that arise as a result. The Special Issue will publish scholarly work that explores emergent subversions, openings, creativities and spaces of freedom, while maintaining a critical eye on the tactics and effects of neo-liberalism.

It will bring together a range of interdisciplinary perspectives that aim to address the following questions:

  • Is social justice and equity in the enterprise university different from/in other times and places?
  • What is the relationship between widening participation and neo-liberal discourses within the enterprise university?
  • What does social justice and equity work look like within the enterprise university in different international contexts, and what tensions and opportunities emerge?
  • What does recruitment, attainment and success mean for students and staff in the enterprise university and beyond, after graduation?
  • How do subjects enact and subvert the norms of the enterprise university for social justice ends?

Criteria for inclusion
This Special Issue seeks papers that are informed by philosophy and social theory, and contribute to international perspectives, by exploring one or more of the following:

  • Critical practice for social justice, equity and widening participation;
  • Onto-ethical relations for social justice and equity;
  • Critical higher education policy analysis;
  • Empirical inquiry into subjectivity, equity and the enterprise university.


Please contact Dr Erica Southgate to discuss your ideas –

Submit papers by 15 November 2014.
Papers should be 3000-4000 words (including notes/references) and emailed to Dr Southgate by the due date. Referencing is APA 6th. Successful submissions will be published in Volume 2, 2015.

Journal website - International Studies in Widening Participation:

Bennett, A., Hodges, B., Fagan, S., Hartley, J., Kavanagh, K., & Schofield, N. (2012). ‘Hard’ and ‘soft’ aspects of learning as investment: Opening up the neo-liberal view of a programme with ‘high’ levels of attrition. Journal of Widening Participation and Lifelong Learning, 14(3), 141-156.
Clegg, S. (2010). Time future-the dominant discourse of higher education. Time & Society, 19(3), 345-364.
Connell, R. (2013). The neoliberal cascade and education: An essay on the market agenda and its consequences. Critical Studies in Education, 54(2), 99-112.
Marginson, S. & Considine, M. (2000). The enterprise university: Power, governance and reinvention in Australia. Cambridge University Press.

Posted: 2014-08-08
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International Studies in Widening Participation ISSN 2203-8841