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”Are we going back? If so, where to?” – Barbara Czarniawska, keynote at Praxis Symposium IV


What will a post-pandemic life entail for the university and world of academia? This was one of the main questions at the Praxis symposium IV at the Faculty of Education at the University of Gothenburg. Senior Professor Barbara Czarniawska at Gothenburg Research Institute was one of the keynote speakers at the conference.

“Higher education in post-pandemic times – re-orienting transformation through praxis” was the theme of the fourth Praxis Symposium May 16 - May 18. This hybrid event took place at the Faculty of Education at the University of Gothenburg in collaboration with the University of Borås. 

The Praxis symposium has become an important meeting hub for academics and people interested in higher education.

Senior Professor Barbara Czarniawska was one of the keynote speakers, and with her talk she wanted to start a discussion on what it is that we wish to return to after the pandemic, and what we want to avoid. 

Barbara Czarniawska.
Photo: Hillevi Nagel

”Are we going back? If so, where to?”

In Barbara Czarniawskas own words:

"There is a wide-spread nostalgia, in education like in other areas, to the time “before COVID”. But how was the time before COVID? Do we really want to go back to the past, and if so, will we be able to do so? One obvious prediction is that “hybridization” is going to be the common phenomenon of the future: hybridization of different sectors, of research and teaching methods, and so on. But “going back” could also be an opportunity of restoring educational traditions that we see as valuable, and of getting rid of some recent developments that are not so attractive."

Other keynote speakers at Praxis Symposium IV was Jana Bacevic from Durham University, UK, Stephen Kemmis from Charles Sturt University and Federation University, Australia, Alessio Surian from University of Padova, Italy and Kalwant Bhopal, University of Birmingham, UK.