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Vocational Education beyond Skill Formation

VET between Civic, Industrial and Market Tensions


Edited By Fernando Marhuenda-Fluixá

Vocational education and training has played an important role in the struggles between Work and Capital along history and today; there are examples of such tensions worldwide. The first section of this book provides illustrations of different countries from the 18th to the early 20th century. The authors explain and exemplify the education of the workforce and its political engagement, contributing to the formation of the working class. The chapters provide relevant approaches to how young apprentices and adult workers developed a class consciousness through vocational education. The second section illustrates practices of resistance and transformation within policies and practices of vocational education nowadays in Central and Southern Europe and South America, addressing the needs of people with disabilities and dispossessed populations. The final section analyses how theories and policies intertwine resulting in the idiosyncrasy of vocational education practices across the world, through tensions between logics and institutional actors. The book addresses the political dimensions of Vocational Education and problematizes its mere consideration as an instrumental tool in skill formation.

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Promoting Basic Social and Health Care Work through Education: Global North and Global South in Comparison (Anja Heikkinen / Perpetua Joseph Kalimasi / Elizabeth Opit / Jesse Sjelvgren)


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Promoting Basic Social and Health Care Work through Education: Global North and Global South in Comparison

1.  Introduction

In this chapter we discuss the function and recognition of basic social and healthcare work in the global context of ‘the totality of societally recognized work’ (Glucksman 1995) and the mainstream educational structures and hierarchies. It builds on lessons learnt during the ReWell Project (2014–2016) that focused on promoting regional wellbeing through adult and vocational education. The case studies in the course Vocational Education and Culture in University of Tampere, research theses of participant students and joint intensive seminars in Tanzania, between university staff, students and regional actors from Finland, Tanzania and Uganda were significant sources of information for this paper1.

A pragmatic ground for the comparison is the joint project, but there is a more political and ethical reason. Although globalization is mainly considered as an industrial and commercial project, it also includes distinctive solutions in basic social and health care. Despite ← 389 | 390 → being a service, which is produced and consumed locally and simultaneously, basic social and health care is embedded in global industrial clusters and commodity chains. Still, minor attention is paid to the conceptual and practical diversity in organizing care work in different geo-economic and geo-political locations. The comparison between the global North and South, represented by Finland, Tanzania and Uganda remains fragmentary, but intends...

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