Public Scholarship

Publicly engaged scholarship

Community engagement is a defining attribute of IU Indianapolis and a significant facet of faculty roles, spanning research, creative activity, teaching, and service. Public scholarship, sometimes referred to as publicly engaged or community engaged scholarship, refers to a type of scholarly work and creative activity, is distinguished by its purposes, processes, and outcomes, including:

  • Co-production of knowledge between faculty and community stakeholders
  • Significant time investment to cultivate relationships with community stakeholders
  • Engagement with public at multiple stages across time
  • Interdisciplinary work and collaboration
  • Explicit goal of a public good impact

Public scholarship defined

An intellectually and methodologically rigorous endeavor that is responsive to public audiences and public peer review. Public scholarship is scholarly work that advances one or more academic disciplines by emphasizing the co-production of knowledge with community stakeholders.

The practices that generated public scholarship are nested within what higher education scholars refer to as “next generation scholarship.” Next generation scholarship is fundamentally collaborative, transdisciplinary, and increasingly digital in nature. By its nature, public scholarship is always collaborative, minimally interdisciplinary, maximally transdisciplinary, and increasingly digital.

IU Indianapolis is committed to attracting and retaining faculty oriented to and skilled in the practices of public scholarship. A growing body of research suggests that next generation approaches, like publicly engaged scholarship, will become an increasing part of the 21st century scholarly enterprise driven by generational shifts in faculty composition, increasing demand for knowledge that addresses complex problems, institutional goals for student learning success, and a host of questions related to public accountability. 

The resources below provide an orientation to publicly engaged scholarship at IU Indianapolis.