22 SES 02 A, Management and Governance in Higher Education
“Knowledge society” has been a central notion for the last two decades in international debates about the transformation of Higher Education (HE). In part, this centrality is due to the use that some highly influential international organization have been doing of it when discussing the limits, problems and possibilities of higher education systems, in an age marked by accelerated scientific and technological changes. Against this background, the aim of this paper is to analyse the notion of Knowledge Society (KS) as it has been used by three international organizations (IO), the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), the World Bank (WB) and the United Nations Organization for Education, Science and Culture (UNESCO) in their recommendations for the transformation of HE, with the purpose of identifying its epistemological, educational and cultural assumptions. This paper is based on my doctoral dissertation developed ate the CINVESTAV, Mexico and University of Wisconsin-Madison, EUA. Leading questions in the research were: How is KS understood by international organizations and what is HE role in this notion? What are the epistemological, educational, political and cultural assumptions supporting this notion? What policy recommendations are drawn from here and what are their consequences for comprehension of HE and knowledge? The research was organized into two axes and two dimensions of analysis. Regarding the axes, in the first one I analysed the conceptualization of KS used by the three organizations with two specific aims, one: to identify the epistemological, educational, political and cultural assumptions sustaining their conceptions; and two: to understand how in their discourses is being constructed the relationship between KS, the knowledge based economies and elements like the so called, knowledge culture, in higher education systems. Through the second axis I studied specific policy recommendations made by these organizations to understand how conceptualizations would be materialized in specific reform policies. Regarding the dimensions of analysis, I studied the international dimension of the policy recommendations and also the local dimension, specifically for Mexico. In this paper I only address the first two questions in the global dimension. The research analytical perspective was constructed by borrowing theoretical elements from the Essex School of political discourse theory and a deconstructivist approach as developed by Jacques Derrida and other post-structuralist thinkers. This perspective served to analyse the construction and dissemination of the notion of KS throughout the corpus, the previous mentioned assumptions and the way in which all these are translated into specific policy recommendations. It is relevant to say that from this theoretical framework, special attention is given to the role of “the political”. Here, the political is neither restricted to a specific realm of reality, nor reduced to a matter of social management or action; instead, it appears at the core of the process of construction of any notion of the social, of HE, knowledge and culture, because the political is precisely a moment of ontological differentiation, of struggles and articulations, construction and dissolution of social spaces and structures.
Bohme, G. and N. Sterh (1987) The knowledge society: the growing impact of Scientific Knowledge on Social Relations. Diedrecht: Reidel Publisher. Burton-Jones, A. (2003) Knowledge Capitalism: the new learning economy. Policy Futures in Education, Volumen 1, Número 1, pp. 143-159. Derrida, J. (1975) La diseminación. España: Fundamentos Gibbons, M., Limoges, C., Nowotny, H., Schwartzman, S., Scott, P. and Trow, M. (1994) The New Production of Knowledge: the dynamics of science and research in contemporary societies. London: Sage. Laclau, E. y Ch. Mouffe (1987) Hegemonía y estrategia socialista. México: Siglo XXI. Peters, M. (2003) Education policy in the Age of Knowledge Capitalism. Policy Futures in Education, Vol. 1, N. 2, pp. 361-380. Popkewitz, T. S. (2008) Cosmopolitanism and the Age of School Reform. NY: Routledge Stehr, N. (1984) The Knowledge Society. The growing impact of Scientific Knowledge on Social Relations. Dorderecht, Holland: Reidel Publishing. OECD (1998). Redefining tertiary education. Paris: Author. OECD (1999). University research in transition. Paris: Author. OECD (2000). Knowledge management in the learning society. Paris: Author. OECD (2007). Giving knowledge for free. Paris: Author. OECD (2007). Higher education and regions globally competitive locally engaged. Paris: Author. UNESCO (1996) Higher education in the XXI Century View of Latin America and the Caribbean. Paris: Author. UNESCO (1997) Towards a new higher education. Paris: Author. UNESCO (1998) World declaration on Higher Education for the twenty-first century: vision and action. Paris: Author. UNESCO (2003) World conference on higher education +5. Final report of the Higher education partner. Paris: Author. UNESCO (2005) Towards Knowledge Societies. Paris: Author. WB (1994). Higher education lessons. Washington, DC: World Bank WB (2000). Peril and promise in tertiary education. Washington, DC: World Bank WB (2003) Constructing knowledge societies. Washington, DC: World Bank WB (2006). Latin American Universities and the Third Mission. Washington, DC: World Bank
- Search for keywords and phrases in "Text Search"
- Restrict in which part of the abstracts to search in "Where to search"
- Search for authors and in the respective field.
- For planning your conference attendance you may want to use the conference app, which will be issued some weeks before the conference
- If you are a session chair, best look up your chairing duties in the conference system (Conftool) or the app.