Cecilia Rikap and Hugo Harari-Kermadec for Capital and Class, in Press.
Universities have historically contributed tothe reproduction of capitalism. However, they have been historically conceivedas a separate sphere or institution detached from the Market, thus onlyindirect participants of capital’s accumulation processes. Our aim in thisarticle is precisely to contribute to acknowledge this transformation byfurther developing a theoretical explanation integrated to a Marxist analysisof contemporary capitalism. In particular, following Levín (1997), we distinguish thata portion of world’s social capital has monopolized the capacity to plan andprofit from innovation. The wide gap in terms of innovation capacities betweenindividual capitals leaves those non-innovative with no better option but to subordinateand let go part of their surplus. It is in this context that we will suggestthat universities integrate to direct capital’s accumulation structures. To doso, we will conceptually distinguish between two sides of universities’ transformation:1) the adoption of capital enterprises’ characteristics resulting in exchangesof their products (teaching and research results), where we will identify differentdegrees of bargaining power to decide the conditions of those exchanges, and 2)the transformation of academic labor, adapting itself to capitalist productionprocesses. Considering the former, we argue that universities’ adoption ofindividual capitals’ features can be better understood as a differentiatedprocess. We suggest three types of differentiated market-university, accordingto the different enterprises in Levín’s (1997) typology. Ourconcluding remarks include further research questions and nuance the generaltransformation of the University as an economic actor offering some clues fordeveloping countertendencies.Continuer la lecture