November 2020

In this section of Campus, EuropeNow features a selection of scholarly articles and books on topics pertinent to the teaching of Europe or teaching in Europe that were published within the last 5 years. This dynamic bibliography, with monthly installments, seeks to highlight both pedagogy research as well as critical analyses of debates taking place in higher education in and about Europe.

If you are interested in reviewing any of the books featured in any of our Campus Round-Ups, please contact our Research and Pedagogy Chair, Hélène Ducros, at


1. Education, Human Capital and Knowledge—The Paradigm Shift and Future Scenarios on Polish Rural Areas

By Konrad Czapiewski and Krzysztof Janc

Abstract: Nowadays, the education level is treated as an important endogenous resource of economic development, defining the development potential of territorial systems. In this context, the level of education can be treated as a resource of towns, regions or states. But this paradigm has undergone transformation in the last decades, especially at the time of the socio-economic and political change in Poland in 1989, and its impact in the future will be different, with due account for the increasing globalization, internet usage, importance of knowledge in development, servicising of the economy, etc. Despite the dynamic growth of the share of inhabitants with higher and secondary education in the last two decades, the spatial distribution of the respective measures remains highly stable. Such high stability (inertia) of the educational spatial structures will also play a significant role in the future importance of education for rural development. The aim of the chapter is to study the changes in the educational attainment level of inhabitants of rural areas in Poland in the recent two-three decades and to identify the perspectives for further importance of education levels of the rural population for the development of rural areas of Poland. The analysis were based on the review of scientific literature, strategic papers, and data collected by public statistics.

Find this book chapter in Three Decades of Transformation in the East-Central European Countryside here


2. Exploring Rurality and Ethnicity in Globalised Higher Education: Ideologies, Intersections and Narratives in Doctoral Research Theses

By Catherine Montgomery

Abstract: The concept of rurality is at the centre of complex geopolitical, geosocial and cultural debates and research which foregrounds the concept of rurality is scarce. This paper seeks alternative perspectives on rurality through a secondary analysis of international doctoral theses contained in the EThOS repository of the British Library, an online collection of half a million doctoral theses completed in UK universities. The doctoral research focusing on rurality and also ethnicity in higher education in a range of countries was explored and twelve theses were focused on. The narratives presented in these twelve theses present alternative constructions of rurality and also raise issues of ideology and politics; deficit and minoritisation of rural students; the importance of intersectionality and the need for universities, including rural institutions, to rethink their agency in engaging with their marginalised communities.

Find this article in Compare: A Journal of Comparative and International Education here


3. Understanding Career Development Amongst Immigrant Youth in a Rural Place

By Per-Åke Rosvall

Abstract: There is little research into the career trajectories and occupational aspirations of rural youth with immigrant backgrounds in Europe. This article presents new research based on field observations and interviews with five young immigrants of Persian descent in one rural town in Sweden. The findings highlighted gender differences in how the research participants felt their immigrant background would shape their future career plans and aspirations. The boys anticipated that by staying in the local town they might experience less of the stigma that they knew immigrants in urban areas often face. In contrast, the girls did not think of their rural hometown as the best place to establish a career. One of the girls also spoke of an ambition to divide her working life between her new homeland and her family’s country of origin. The analysis stresses the importance of an intercultural understanding of both the local and the global when counselling immigrant youth in rural areas regarding their career choices.

Find this article in Intercultural Education here 


4. Internships for Higher Education Students to Promote the Local Sustainability of Rural Places

By Nieves García-Casarejos and Luis Antonio Sáez-Pérez

Abstract: Sustainability and population have a complex relationship. Popular versions of the first are usually based on the premise of reducing the population. However, in some remote rural areas with a low density, this condition needs to be reconsidered, as it would put the viability of the local community at risk and lead to environmental, economic and, above all, social losses. Although repopulation is impossible, since remote rural areas have an ageing demographic structure and an extremely low fertility rate, we can propose the regeneration of their human, social and relational capital by attracting talent and commitment. To achieve this, the Desafío Programme (Rural Erasmus) enables university students to do internships in companies and institutions in sparsely populated areas, living alongside their residents. Despite being an experimental policy with a narrow scope in statistical terms, the Desafío Programme is an inspiring experience supported by those who have participated in it and contributes to the social and economic regeneration of areas in decline. This is a practical case of applying a sustainable strategy to a rural area in crisis, which can be transferred to many other countries facing a similar problem.

Find this article in Sustainability here 


5. University Pathways of Urban and Rural Migration in Iceland

By Thoroddur Bjarnason and Ingi Runar Edvardsson

Abstract: Low levels of education have serious social, economic and cultural ramifications in rural areas. In many countries, regional universities have explicitly been built to educate the local population, create professional jobs and stimulate innovation. More recently, distance education has been developed to provide university education in rural regions and diminish brain drain towards urban centres. In this study, the pathways of Icelandic university graduates are traced from place of origin to residence five years after graduation. An overwhelming majority of local students at the national University of Iceland (UI) remain in the Reykjavík Capital Area after graduation, while others mostly emigrate abroad. Only about one in three UI students from regions beyond commuting distance return after graduation, while about half remain in the capital area and others mostly emigrate. The regional University of Akureyri (UNAK) in Northern Iceland is relatively successful in retaining graduates from North Central region, but on-campus students from regions beyond commuting distance from UNAK are no more likely to return after graduation than their UI counterparts. In sharp contrast, about three in four UNAK distance students remain in their region of origin after graduation. While regional universities may primarily strengthen regional centres, distance education has the potential to enhance educational levels in more distant exurban, micropolitan and rural areas.

Find this article in the Journal of Rural Studies here       


Photo: Library hall in a high school, college campus | Shutterstock
Published on November 8, 2020.


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