Unit of Committed Action: A Proposal for a Solution for the University Problem of Providing a Service to the Society

1 December, 2015

Reference: Manzano-Arrondo, V., & Suárez García, E. (2015). Unidad de Acción Comprometida: una propuesta de solución ante el problema universitario del servicio a la sociedad. Hábitat y Sociedad, 8, 147-165.

Abstract: The three traditionally assumed functions of the university (teaching, research, and knowledge transfer) have been suffering problems of mismatching (applications with different directions for each function), imbalance (some functions being more relevant than others), and of orientation (difficulties orienting work  towards a service to society). Currently, market orientation clashes with 3covers university activity in its three commitments, thereby generating specific problems. This document analyses this situation and proposes Units of Committed Action as a contribution towards the set of solution strategies that are being generated to guide the university towards the service of common good, adjust the three commitments, and to foment a balance in each of their weights. The Units of Committed Action work along the same lines as Participatory Action Research and those of Service Learning, whose particularities are also addressed here. Finally, a specific application is presented in a neighbourhood catalogued as a zone in need of social transformation.

Keywords: Unit of Committed Action, Action research, Service learning, Mission of the University.

Full text: