Från utvald till utbildad - Persona i utredningar om svensk forskarutbildning 1945-2004 : From Chosen to Educated: Persona in Swedish Government Official Reports Concerning Research Training 1945-2004

Sammanfattning: The aim of this dissertation is to investigate how the doctoral student has been portrayed in government official reports concerning Swedish research training from 1945 to 2004. In this dissertation, the concept of scientific persona, mostly utilized for the analysis of successful individual figures in science, is applied to capture the opinions on the preconditions and organizational aspects of Swedish research training at the governmental policy level, which provides for a generalized figure to take shape – the persona(e) of the research student. The governmental committee system, with its extended history and considered to be a hallmark of the Swedish deliberative democracy, has produced seven reports on the Swedish doctoral program, which constitutes the empirical basis of the dissertation. In the analysis, the emergence of the Ph.D. student’s persona has been filtered through some constantly reappearing organizational aspects of the doctoral program found in the reports, namely, recruitment, study funding, study efficiency, supervision, and labor market. Several personae have emerged and disappeared through the time period studied. However, a more decisive shift was observed during the reform on doctoral education in 1969, which paved the way for a new professional persona, modeled after the laboratorial and clinical disciplines. This persona ensured not only the reproduction of researchers for the universities, but also provided for research-trained teachers in high schools, as well as the needs for scientifically trained staff for the increasingly expanding industry. The dissertation registers a major shift regarding the doctoral student in Swedish research education, from the perception of the research talented person – an individual who by and large had the inherent properties that were required and was appointed by the professor, to a persona that is created through education. A variety of figures, with increasingly heterogeneous traits, are now eligible to incarnate a persona through research training. Today, the official doctoral ideal is no longer a specimen, an individual, but a malleable collective, who is accompanied by research education through a series of decrees and regulations in the form of study plans, contracts, secured funding, etc. Whether there are several personae, or rather aspects thereof, still remains debatable.

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