23 SES 05 A, Public Debate and Education Policy
Parallel Paper Session
This paper presents a country case in an international frame. Almost fifteen years ago the Federal Mexican Government adopted a new way of designing and implementing public policy (PEF, 2000). It was based on a public policy approach and presented to introduce effectiveness, accountability and direct public participation in the definition of the governmental agenda. This was to replace the traditional way of designing policy, characterized for its verticality, lack of clarity and rigidness (Fox, 2002). One of the main sectors of application for this perspective was the public education system. But despite the intentions, after almost a decade, several strategic policies implemented under this approach are failing.
This paper presents an excerpt of an ongoing research which deals with a specific part of the process of designing and implementing public policies in education, a sector debated in the open, but quite obscure in terms of the policy making process. The research was detonated by two questions: why some policies in education, despite claiming to be based on a “public policy approach” seem to respond more to tradition, ideological convictions or institutional tendencies, than to the "greater public interest"? Is there a link between the failure of a specific policy and its publicness?
These questions were constructed as a research problem through the analysis of three policy cases. In this paper I present the case of the initiative for the implementation of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) for the expansion of Higher Education (HE) services (SEP, 2001; 2006). It is crucial to point out that since 1994 fundamental changes in Mexican education policies have been oriented by explicit recommendations of the OECD (OECD-SEP, 1994; OECD, 2005). Since 2000 the OECD presented explicit European initiatives as a role model in terms of policy making, encouraging the government to follow the best international practices (SEP, 2006; CONACYT, 2010).
As for the conceptual orientations, it has been necessary to revisit the idea of publicness or publicity, and the way in which it is constructed in different debates. Since the research has been conducted through the articulation of a political discourse analysis perspective (Laclau, 2005) with some elements retrieved from policy analysis approaches (Parsons, 1995; Hill, 2005), publicity has been conceptualized in the tension of an institutional condition, a state of existence and a valuable principle. Here, policies are understood as a configuration of signifying practices, vulnerable, disputed, carrying the traces of other ideas, meanings, contexts and times. But such configurations are also tools used to regulate life, and as long as policies imply the inclusion and exclusion of specific elements, readings about public interest, power and governmentality have also been relevant (Miller and Rose, 2008). At another level, in 2011 Mexico showed an access rate to HE of a low 26%, against this data, beyond its traditional representation as a “neutral instrument” (Gillard, Bailey and Nolan, 2008), ICT have been conceptualized here as a social and institutional aspiration, as a recurrent hope and as a latent menace for the future of HE
Birklan, T. A. (2011). An Introduction to the Policy Process. Sharp, In.: New York. CONACYT (2001) Programa Especial de Ciencia y Tecnología 2001-2006. México: Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnología. Fisher, F. (2003). Reframing Public Policy. Discursive Politics and Deliberative Practices. Oxford U.P.: NY. Fox, V. (2002). Agenda Presidencial de Buen Gobierno. Mexico: President's Office Gillard, S., Bailey, D., and E. Nolan (2008) “Ten Reasons for IT Educators to be Early Adopters of IT Innovations”, Journal of Information Technology Education, 7: 21-32. Hill, M. (2005). The Public Policy Process. Pearson-Longman. Laclau, E. (2005). On Populist Reason. London: Verso Miller, P. and N. Rose (2008). Governing the Present: Administering Economic, Social and Personal Life. Cambridge, UK: Polity Press. OECD-SEP. (2006). Thematic Review of Tertiary Education. Country Background, Report for Mexico, México, SEP. OECD. (2005). OECD e-Government Studies: Mexico. Paris, France: OECD. Parsons, W. (1995). Public Policy: An Introduction to the Theory and Practice of Policy Analysis Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press. PEF. (2001). Plan Nacional de Desarrollo (National Plan for Development). México: Poder Ejecutivo Federal. SEP. (2001) Programa de Nacional de Educación (National Education Program). México: Secretaría de Educación Pública. SEP. (2006). Programa Sectorial de Educación (Education Sector Program). México: Secretaría de Educación Pública. Weimer, D. L. (1998). Policy Analysis and Evidence: A Craft Perspective. Policy Studies Journal, 26(1), 114-128. doi:10.1111/j.1541-0072.1998.tb01928.x
- 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.