Resilient book

Academic Resilience: Personal stories and lessons learnt from the COVID-19 experience

Without a doubt, the COVID-19 pandemic tested the resilience of academics in higher education. Many universities were severely affected by reduced student enrolment, with widespread job losses reported across universities. For many academics, the impact of the pandemic has been worrying, financially crippling and overwhelming. The virus has also exposed academic inequalities and impacted heavily on vulnerable people. The individual and collective heroic spirit of many academics has been nothing short of extraordinary. Overcoming the initial hurdles of COVID-19 takes one kind of energy; the resilience needed to remain engaged despite the continuing changes and uncertainties is quite another challenge. It is one that demands sustained resilience. This book provides perspectives across disciplines, career stages and global contexts on how to develop resilience in academia. These personal stories, from 14 academics in Australia, Brazil, Hong Kong, Singapore, South Africa, United States, and United Kingdom, may empower others not only to survive, but to thrive in times of adversity.

“An insightful and comforting selection of stories that explore the challenges overcome and the communities built during a time of global crisis. If you are an academic, this book offers ideas, strategies, and the sense that we are not alone in the difficulties of pandemic and post-pandemic academic life” Amber McLeod, Lecturer, Monash University 

“In 2020-2021 the global pandemic has challenged us all in different ways. This timely volume on Academic Resilience is underpinned by the strengths-based approach with contributions from academics around the globe and highlights that it is possible for individuals to thrive using strengths to cope with whatever life dishes up. The authors present a conceptual framework, the Academic Resilience Model (ARM), that addresses factors that help us do well despite adversity. The model should be highly useful for both researchers and practicing academics.” Erica Frydenberg, PhD AM Honorary Fellow of the Australian Psychological Society, The University of Melbourne 

“This book is an excellent reminder that despite the shockingly high rate of mental health issues among academics, pandemic or not, there are ways to overcome challenges and thrive in academia. These are the stories worth sharing, especially for early career academics, such as myself, who feel daunted by the prospect of starting a career in an already competitive field that has been further complicated by the COVID-19 pandemic. Thank you and congratulations to the team for providing that sliver of hope for many of us!” Dr Ethel Villafranca, Research Fellow, The University of Melbourne 

On this page you’ll find our upcoming book on academic resilience due to be published in early 2022 by Emerald.

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