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University Community Engagement and Lifelong Learning – The Porous University

Preece J. (2017) University Community Engagement and Lifelong Learning - The Porous University, Palgrave Macmillan 2017, ISBN: 9783319561622, Pages: 214

This book offers a conceptual re-think of how university community engagement functions as a lifelong learning resource for communities. While having a specific focus on the South African context, it has implications for other universities that are concerned with their communities. The authors argues for the university as a public good, in spite of current trends towards marketisation and commodification of higher education. The book draws on a theoretical framework of capabilities, asset-based community development, and the adult learning concept of dialogue, and proposes a model whereby the walls of the university become metaphorically ‘porous’, so that community members feel free to interact with the university as equal members of society. A historical outline of African universities is provided, as well as an exploration of the evolution of terms such as community engagement, service learning and learning cities. The book includes an examination of the policy and practice implications for the ideological model of a porous university.

Palgrave Macmillan