Universiteit van 't Stad : een ontstaansgeschiedenis van de Universiteit Antwerpen, 1954-2003
In the historiography of Belgian universities, little attention has been paid to the establishment of universities during the latter half of the twentieth century. This is a notable gap, considering the distinct experiences of smaller, younger institutions as they navigated the rapidly changing academic landscape, in contrast to their larger, more senior counterparts. As a comprehensive study on the establishment of the University of Antwerp was lacking, its twentieth anniversary presented an ideal opportunity to explore this topic. To this end, the dissertation first examines the recurring demand for a university in Antwerp, dating back to the mid-nineteenth century but gaining momentum during the 1960s in the context of a large-scale debate on university expansions. After assessing the creation of three legally recognized university institutions (UFSIA, RUCA, UIA) in the city of Antwerp in 1965 and 1971, the study focuses on their distinct identity formation and interrelationship, resulting in the merger of 2003. Recognizing that universities are not ivory towers but are socially embedded, the dissertation situates this institutional history within a broader socio-economic and political context. Next, the research explores this historical process through the viewpoints of the various actors involved. Given that UAntwerp is a unique, man-made project, we can comprehend its outcome by considering the decisions these stakeholders have made throughout the years. The study draws upon a wide range of sources to understand their views and actions. A recurring theme in the dissertation is the tension between common and conflicting interests, which manifested during the discussions leading up to the establishment of the Antwerp university institutions and persisted throughout the thirty years that the trio coexisted in the same city. For instance, the UFSIA, RUCA, and the UIA shared ambitions to contribute to regional development, an incentive for collaboration. However, their disparate profiles posed challenges in working towards a solid partnership.
Antwerpen : Universiteit Antwerpen, Faculteit Letteren en Wijsbegeerte, Departement Geschiedenis , 2023
459 p.
Supervisor: de Smaele, Henk [Supervisor]
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Publications with a UAntwerp address
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Creation 13.11.2023
Last edited 06.12.2023
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