Prior to the arrival of coronavirus, staff at UK art and design schools had been taking part in strikes over pay and conditions.
Here, designer and RCA visiting lecturer Adrian Shaughnessy explains the complex reasons behind the actionLike nearly everything else in life, the recent strike action by teaching staff from UK art and design schools has been engulfed by the Covid-19 pandemic.
But the action taken by lecturers at 74 universities was also caused by a virus, one that entered the bloodstream of higher education a decade or so ago, with a dire outcome: the marketisation of universities.
The roots of the unrest can be traced back to the government’s stealth-like reduction of funding for higher education and the simultaneous introduction of life-crippling student tuition fees.
The commercialisation of education went supernova, and students became trapped in a quagmire of debt and anxiety.

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