Just got my contract committing me to the Croke Park agreement. Very waffly and really contains nothing of any significance – most of us are doing all of the things in it anyway. It makes me wonder what all the other public servants are signing up to. If it’s more stuff like this, there’ll be very little change. Real change in Universities might involve things like a third semester, real assessment of teaching, real targets for research output etc.
One thing that is interesting is that ‘you are expected to promote and engage in the development of research across disciplines as well as your area of research’. I’m not sure why that is in a contract of employment. In my view the best interdisciplinary research arises organically when people from different disciplines genuinely need each other’s expertise. I don’t think forcing people together leads to good science. It’s the ‘interdisciplinary is good’ philosophy I suppose. Sure, research at the interfaces is important, but so is research smack in the middle of one’s own discipline.