Free spirits? The academic on the aeroplane

Martin Parker*, Elke Weik

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

63 Citations (Scopus)


Like business executives and politicians, academics form part of the super-mobile population of the global north. Their freedom to travel, which entails a freedom from certain local obligations, is not always voluntary but part and parcel of professional expectations and is subject to peer and managerial evaluation. In this article, we argue that there are a lot of structural and institutional constraints built into academic mobility. The original notion of intellectual detachment and academic freedom has developed into a demand for social and moral detachment by the ever-growing circuit of international 'visibility' as celebrated at international conferences. It excludes all those whose attachment to persons or causes requires bodily presence, and such an exclusion transforms the contents and values of academic knowledge - not for the better, we believe.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)167-181
Number of pages15
JournalManagement Learning
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2014


  • Care
  • conferences
  • critical management education
  • embodiment
  • ethics
  • gender


Dive into the research topics of 'Free spirits? The academic on the aeroplane'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this