The following short interventions are designed to spark engagement and debate with some of the key issues underlying the Charter. The views expressed are personal ones and we are simply opening our pages to create a commons where we can all put forward our views on what we would like the Irish university to be as students, teachers or just concerned citizens. Please join in and comment on our opening salvo. Make your comments on each of these key topics, suggest new themes or write your own piece and submit it to us at

Human Capital Marnie Holborow looks at the origins and implications of a new word for student

Irish Science Paul Higgins ( argues that the future of Irish science is seriously at risk if present trends in university management continue

StudentsOrlaith Delargy asks why students should be interested in the Charter campaign and points to what needs to be done

Funding Crisis Mike Jennings examines the nature of the university funding crisis and uncovers some disturbing facts

Collegiality- Mary Gallagher recovers this seemingly lost concept and brings it to bear on the current crisis of the Irish university

Academic Freedom Louise O’Reilly argues that universities are places of  learning and not just enterprise and that society expects them to be free spaces characterised by decent working conditions

TeachingBrendan Walsh unpacks the Charter statement on teaching and examines current threats to the integrity of the teaching mission

Online learningFerdinand von-Prondzynski interrogates the current enthusiasm for MOOCs (massive open online courses) and reflects on the value of face-to face teaching 

Research a Computer Science Researcher develops one of the Charter principles and argues that we need to distinguish between the public funding of research and private benefit from same

Impact Ciarán Mc Kenna outlines some of the main impacts of neoliberalism on those working at the university who see job security undermined and morale dropping 

CasualisationAline Courtois and Theresa O’Keefe examine the recent increase in the casualization of university employment and ask where it is leading us

Innovation–  Brian Lucey argues that universities cannot lead innovation when they themselves are all but impervious to innovation

ManagerialismKathleen Lynch deconstructs the new managerialism now dominant in the Irish university and its political agenda

EnterpriseBrian Lucey and Charles Larkin argue that universities are more that entrepreneurial  hot-houses and question the growing role of the business lobby