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Skill Formation Regimes in South Asia

A Comparative Study on the Path-Dependent Development of Technical and Vocational Education and Training for the Garment Industry

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Markus Maurer

In the face of accelerated economic globalisation, many of the industries in economically less developed countries have become more technology-intensive. Skill formation processes, both inside and outside firms, are therefore changing. This study scrutinises such transformations by comparing – from the perspective of historical institutionalism – the skill formation regimes of the garment industries in Sri Lanka and Bangladesh. It sheds light on the differences between the trajectories of the in-firm skill formation regimes of the two countries, and reveals the important part that varying paths of educational development in both countries have played in shaping these trajectories. At the same time, the study shows how, in both countries, state-led skill formation regimes have been transformed not only by market forces and the growing importance of corporate business interests, but also by the social demand for educational credentials.

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List of Tables and figures XV

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LIST OF TABLES AND FIGURES Table 1: Adult literacy and children reaching grade five in Sri Lanka and Bangladesh .......................................... 18 Table 2: In-firm skill formation institutions ............................. 57/58 Table 3: Types of in-firm skill formation regimes ........................ 61 Table 4: Out-of-firm skill formation institutions .......................... 62 Table 5: Types of out-of-firm skill formation regimes ............ 66/67 Table 6: Dimensions of education and training regimes ............... 70 Table 7: Dimensions of industry-specific production regimes ..... 71 Table 8: Institutional characteristics of labour-intensive, export-oriented production regimes in developing countries .............................................. 72/73 Table 9: Actors interrelated with education and training regimes and production regimes of specific national political economies ...................................... 74/75 Table 10: Institutional dimensions and actors of the political and administrative regimes .................... 77/78 Table 11: Output of private training programmes for employees working in the Sri Lankan garment industry ................ 210 Figure 1: The skill formation regime of the garment industry ....... 68 Figure 2: Model suggesting convergence of skill formation regimes of labour-intensive, export-oriented industries in developing countries .................................. 83

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