The Transformative, Responsive University

Occasional Paper Series

Concept Note

The Engagement and Transformation Portfolio (ETP) office, in close collaboration with the Chair for Critical Studies in Higher Education Transformation (CriSHET), presents an Occasional Paper Series under the theme: The Transformative, Responsive University. This series aims to provide a hub for intellectual debate, within Nelson Mandela University and beyond, regarding the question, not so much what the university is good at, but rather what the university is good for1 in our time and place faced with, often unprecedented, societal challenges.
Underlying the series is the intention to grow the intellectual engagement with Mandela University’s commitment to reimagine, reposition and reframe its character as a transformative, responsive university.  The premise is that universities might advance institutional change by developing constitutive relationships between engagement and transformation; and embedding these across the system. This series is thus interested in reflecting on both scholarship and praxis in thinking through how to engage for the purpose of transforming the University/university in a socially just direction.
In order to spark this conversation, the Occasional Paper Series disseminates working papers, original research studies, reflective essays, lectures, seminar papers, speeches and conversations from  university- and community-based social actors and those generally interested in the university as an engaged, social institution. We welcome submissions of writing and/or art. We invite pieces of various lengths, but preferably in the range of 2000 and 7000 words, formatted and referenced according to the Occasional Paper Series writing guidelines, available under 'Submission Guidelines'.
The themes of the series are flexible, but some areas of interest are:
Convergence in Theory & Practice Abilitionist University Studies & the Undercommons  Engaged Scholarship 
Institutional Change & Academic Renewal  Decolonial Sustainability  Student Access & Success 
African-purposed Curricula  Africanisation & Decolonisation in HE  TVET, Adult Education & Community Education 
The Civic, Responsible, Responsive University  Feminism & Gender Justice  HE Response to SGBV 
University Futures  African Women’s Intellectual Histories  The University & the Fourth Industrial Revolution 
Higher Education Transformation  Racism & Knowledge  Non-racialism & Democracy in HE 
Critical University Studies  Institutional Culture(s) Knowledge Production 
Universities & Sustainable Food Systems  Equity & Redress  Language in HE 
Hubs of Convergence  Diversity & Social Inclusion  Learning, Teaching and Pedagogy 
  Critical Disability Studies & Universal Access  HE Policy & Praxis

If you are interested in making a submission, please forward a 250-word abstract for the proposed work along with a 100-word biography to

1. Brink, C. (2018) The Soul of the University: Why Excellence is Not Enough. Bristol: Bristol University Press.