23 SES 04 D, National Policy Making and Education Inequalities
Since the 1980s, the social and economic forces of globalisation have driven a wide array of new policy formations and processes in education. One powerful global trend has been the development of policies designed to achieve greater national standardisation in core areas of schooling, including curricula, teaching, and assessment (Hartong, 2014; Savage, 2016). Standards-based reforms have been strongly promoted by international organisations, such as the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), in response to concerns about the role of education in a global economy (OECD, 2004), in turn prompting governments to reconsider how education systems can be more efficiently harnessed in a context of intensifying global competition (Rizvi & Lingard, 2010).
In recent years, the standardisation of education policies and processes has been accompanied by a complex array of new accountability measures and data infrastructures, ostensibly to evaluate the progress that is being made (Lingard & Sellar, 2013; Morgan, 2016). A proliferation of international, national, and sub-national indicators, benchmarks and assessments, for example, are now regularly used to rank and compare education systems and schools (Anagnostopoulos et al., 2013). The OECD, in particular, is playing a central role in generating a global set of policy ideas and practices through both its Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) and ‘Education at a Glance’ reports of education indicators (Lingard & Grek, 2007).
To date, existing research on the global transformation of education policy and governance has largely focused on identifying and comparing national trends and policy changes, in federal and unitary countries alike. At the same time, however, there has been a growing body of research that points to the ambiguity of global-local flows of ‘recontextualisation’ (Steiner-Khamsi, 2012), the local meaning of reforms, but also the changing influence of national and local actors who operate as policy ‘brokers’ (or opponents) for (or against) reform. At the same time, there is a growing awareness that sub-national actors are playing a powerful role as mediators in globalising and standardising tendencies in education and that in turn, global policy actors are increasingly active at 'scales' below the nation-state (Engel & Frizzell, 2015). This awareness for (sub)national dynamics is particularly conspicuous in multi-level federal systems, in which schooling policies are not controlled by a central government and about which ‘national level’ claims about global policy influence are highly problematic. Against this background, the proposed paper provides insights from four distinctive federal systems (Australia, Canada, Germany, and the United States) to explore the following question: How are transnational education reform trends reshaping not only national, but also subnational policy processes in multi-level education systems?
Anagnostopoulos, D., Rutledge, S. A. & Jacobsen, R. (Eds.) (2013). The infrastructure of accountability: Data use and the transformation of American education. Cambridge: Harvard University Press. Bilstein, J., & Ecarius, J. (2009). Standardising – Kanonisierung. Erziehungswissenschaftliche Reflexionen. [Standardisation – Canonisation: Reflections from educational research]. Wiesbaden, VS JEP – Special Issue Proposal – Towards a global standardisation of education? 6 Verlag. Engel, L. C., & Frizzell, M. (2015). Competitive comparison and PISA bragging rights: Sub-national uses of the OECD’s PISA in Canada and the US. Discourse: Studies in the Cultural Politics of Education, 36(5), 665-682. Exley, S., Braun, A., & Ball, S. J. (2011). Global education policy: Networks and flows. Critical Studies in Education, 52, 213–218. Hartong, S. (2014). Neue Bildungsregulierung im Zeitalter der ‘governance by numbers’. Das Beispiel standardbasierter Bildungsreform in Deutschland und den USA”. In Leviathan, 42(4): 1-29. Hartong, S. (2015). Global policy convergence through 'distributed governance'? The emergence of ‘national’ education standards in the US and Germany. Journal of International and Comparative Social Policy, 31(1): 10-33. Klein, R., & Dungs, S. (Eds.). (2010). Standardisierung der Bildung. Zwischen Subjekt und Kultur [Standardisation of Education. Between Subject and Culture]. Wiesbaden, VS Verlag. Lingard, B., & Grek, S. (2007). The OECD, indicators and PISA: An exploration of events and theoretical perspectives. Edinburgh, ESRC/ESF Research Project. Lingard. B., & Sellar, S. 2013. ‘Catalyst data’: perverse systemic effects of audit and accountability in Australian schooling. Journal of Education Policy, 28(5), 634-656. Morgan, C. (2016). Testing students under cognitive capitalism: knowledge production of twentyfirst century skills. Journal of Education Policy. DOI:10.1080/02680939.2016.1190465 OECD. (2004). What makes school systems perform? Seeing school systems through the prism of PISA. Paris: OECD. Rizvi, F., & B. Lingard. (2010). Globalizing education policy. New York: Routledge. Savage, G. C. (2016). Who’s steering the ship? National curriculum reform and the re-shaping of Australian federalism. Journal of Education Policy. DOI: 10.1080/02680939.2016.1202452 Steiner-Khamsi, G. (2012). Understanding policy borrowing and lending. In G. Steiner-Khamsi, & F. Waldow (eds.). Policy borrowing and lending in education (pp. 3-17). London/New York: Routledge.
00. Central Events (Keynotes, EERA-Panel, EERJ Round Table, Invited Sessions)
Network 1. Continuing Professional Development: Learning for Individuals, Leaders, and Organisations
Network 2. Vocational Education and Training (VETNET)
Network 3. Curriculum Innovation
Network 4. Inclusive Education
Network 5. Children and Youth at Risk and Urban Education
Network 6. Open Learning: Media, Environments and Cultures
Network 7. Social Justice and Intercultural Education
Network 8. Research on Health Education
Network 9. Assessment, Evaluation, Testing and Measurement
Network 10. Teacher Education Research
Network 11. Educational Effectiveness and Quality Assurance
Network 12. LISnet - Library and Information Science Network
Network 13. Philosophy of Education
Network 14. Communities, Families and Schooling in Educational Research
Network 15. Research Partnerships in Education
Network 16. ICT in Education and Training
Network 17. Histories of Education
Network 18. Research in Sport Pedagogy
Network 19. Ethnography
Network 20. Research in Innovative Intercultural Learning Environments
Network 22. Research in Higher Education
Network 23. Policy Studies and Politics of Education
Network 24. Mathematics Education Research
Network 25. Research on Children's Rights in Education
Network 26. Educational Leadership
Network 27. Didactics – Learning and Teaching
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