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Challenges and Reforms in Vocational Education

Aspects of Inclusion and Exclusion

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Stefanie Stolz and Philipp Gonon

In this collected edition, globalization and its consequences on vocational education systems are described and, at the same time, combined with the question of whether new phenomena of inclusion but also of exclusion are produced. Inclusion and exclusion are differentiations that predominate in all kinds of (vocational education) systems, regardless of their national background. These terms base on the requirements of the system itself but also on shortages, particularly when supply and demand are dehiscing. Vocational education developed out of the requirement to integrate large parts of society into a broader or more extended education and, consequently, into an economic and social process. Besides the so-called «social question», gender-, status- and generation-specific characteristics and also the participation in higher education are under discussion. Depending on each country – this volume features contributions of Australia, Canada, China, Germany, Denmark, France, Finland, Japan, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, and the USA – this debate generates a different development which is described by the authors in their different research areas. Collectively, a multifaceted overall picture arises which illustrates the importance of inclusion and exclusion.

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VI. Coda

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ANTONI LINDGREN Reflections on the Art of Exclusion Introduction The word “exclusion” is related to things that are considered to be very good: e.g., the word exclusive indicates the highest quality, a high price etc. Exclusion refers to a small number of people – a so- called elite. It indicates something rare, like very expensive jewel- lery, a luxury car, a house like a palace, a tailored suit etc. Exclusion is an indication to be chosen, or to be among the few, chosen ones. Since this is considered to be something good, we can talk about positive exclusion. In this reflection on the contributions to this book I will elaborate on the idea that today’s society is based on exclusion (Lindgren, 2009). In spite of this word is often used in a negative sense, I take into account that exclusion is something positive, something being ad- mired for. In face of the constant talk where exclusion is used as something negative, I think that there are many proofs of exclusion being considered something positive in the texts in this book. An example for the importance of exclusiveness is the youth unemploy- ment rate of around 25 percent, e. g., of fitting in. The focus on people with special needs, which makes the chosen few “normals” exclu- sive, is constantly growing as well. The policy of gender main- streaming can also be seen in this context or else since when is being a woman considered to be something negative? Thus, being young,...

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