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Lev Lafayette

lev.lafayette@unimelb.edu.au

Qualifications

Photo of Lev Lafayette for profileBA (Hons) in Politics, Philosophy, and Sociology, Murdoch University
MBA (Technology Management), Chifley Business School
Grad Cert in Project Management, Chifley Business School
Grad Cert in Adult and Tertiary Education, Murdoch University
MSc in Information Systems, University of Salford (completion end of 2019)

Research Title

The Future of the University in the Age of the Internet

Research Summary

The development of movable type print in Europe witnessed a rapid expansion in number and content to the medieval university system. Today, and with even less time to adapt, the university system in the developed world is facing an analogous challenge to expansion, with drivers from the rise of mass advanced education in developed countries, the internationalisation of knowledge, and digital technologies. However, unlike the traditional social formation which faced a systemic conflict with a religious mode of consciousness expressed through the political system, the systemic conflict in the contemporary modern social formation, whilst presented with a secular mode of consciousness, is mediated through a propertarian economic system.

The provision of free and open source research and university-level educational content is a policy issue deserving of attention in this context. With the expansion in scope and scale of information and communications technologies, there is significant opportunities to provide a great deal of university-level content, research and educational, in a variety of online media formats and licensing arrangements. This is particularly important to the institutional form of the university given the increasing expansion of the advanced education sector as any necessary increase size and number of advanced education sector under traditional education and research mechanisms would face sustainable issues. An alternative is the development of a research-orientated institutions best suited to proximal and collaborative methodologies, coupled with teaching via new media technologies. Exploration of these technical possibilities considers the institutional, systematic, and legal restrictions which prevent the implementation of such content, along with (often contradictory) policy decisions which more limits the attainment of an education production possibility frontier.

Such a possibility raises a classic sociological concern, where the technological means of production and communication come into conflict with the various social relations, such as the economic and legal infrastructure and the property relations that they presuppose. Whilst a competitive institutional environment may encourage some efficiencies, the application of a propertarian approach to knowledge as intellectual property provides a 'damaged good'. Utilising the economic models of positive externalities, it is possible to illustrate forgone societal welfare and losses in democratic rationality by this lack of content, especially in reference to the distinction between lifelong education and lifelong learning. This analysis reviews the general principle that although those directly involved in a transaction may incur losses in a transaction there can also be aggregate societal benefits, but applies it specifically for the context of advanced education and research.

The prescriptive conclusions ties together the theories of advanced education and the economic of externalities to propose evidence-based optimal reforms to the contemporary higher education institution that account for the probable future circumstances. Initial explorations are also made to expanding this general principle to primary and secondary educational institutions, noting however the additional social integration and welfare role performed by such bodies. Further consideration is also made towards whether private corporations could also be subject to the provision of transparent content. Ultimately this will involve a returning to a philosophical inquiry on the linguistically mediation of decentered consciousness and the formation of shared symbolic values.

Research Interests

Adult and Higher Education, High Performance Computing, Social Theory, Public Economics

Recent Publications

Lev Lafayette, Bernd Wiebelt, Dirk von Suchdoletz et. al., The Chimera and the Cyborg: Hybrid Compute: In vivo HPC, Cloud and Container Implementations, Advances in Science, Technology and Engineering Systems Journal, Vol. 4, No. 2, 2019

Julian Kunkel, Weronika Filinger, Jean-Thomas Acquaviva, Anja Gerbes, Lev Lafayette, et. al. Towards an HPC Certification Program, Journal of Computer Science Education, Volume 10, Issue 1, 2019, p88-89

Lev Lafayette, Bernd Wiebelt. Spartan and NEMO: Two hpc-cloud hybrid implementations, in 2017 IEEE 13th International Conference on e-Science (e-Science), pp. 458-459. IEEE, 2017.

Lev Lafayette, et. al. OpenStack and HPC Workload Management in Stig Telfer, The Crossroads of Cloud and HPC: OpenStack for Scientific Research, Open Stack Foundation, 2016

Hadi Latifi, Lev Lafayette, and Mehmet Bilgen. Spatial Distribution of Material Properties in Load Bearing Femur as Characterized by Evolutionary Structural Optimization, Journal of Modern Mechanical Engineering and Technology, 3, pp17-24 2016

Lev Lafayette. Software Tools Compared To User Education in High Performance Computing, Proceedings of THETA: The Higher Education Technology Agenda. Gold Coast, Australia: 11-13 May, 2015