Global Perspectives, Experiences and Implications
Introduction: Robert A. DeVillar, Binbin Jiang, & Jim Cummins
Robert A. DeVillar, Binbin Jiang, & Jim Cummins
This volume presents a substantive view of ways in which Australia and countries in Africa, Asia, Europe, and North and South America are engaged in educational programs and practices that transform the learning processes and outcomes of their respective student populations—and, in one case, of student teachers from other countries—and, in so doing, their respective national and global trajectories in key areas of development. The purpose of this introduction, however, is, first, to place the role of education within its current complex and highly politicized global context, particularly in the wake of a 3-decade global embrace of neoliberalism-cum-corporatism and disaffection with social democracy (see Scruton, 2007, for working definitions of these terms); second, to gauge that trend’s deleterious economic effects on the middle class and poor in traditional advanced economies; and third, to relate the above two realities to the concomitant national and geopolitical uncertainties that have ensued. The alternative model, termed by some the new economy (Cavanagh & Broad, 2012), emphasizes efforts toward globalization that are “economically equitable, authentically democratic, and ecologically sound” (Hunter & Yates, 2002).