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Educational Policy Transfer in an Era of Globalization: Theory – History – Comparison


Jeremy Rappleye

As education becomes increasingly global, the processes and politics of transfer have become a central focus of research. This study provides a comprehensive analysis of contemporary theoretical and analytical work aimed at exploring international educational reform and reveals the myriad ways that globalization is now fundamentally altering our dominant conceptions. It illustrates how transfer has emerged to play a central part in policy formation processes worldwide, but also reveals critical differences between developed countries and aid-dependent developing states. This substantial breadth, combined with a level of empirical depth absent from current research, opens up new vistas through which to understand globalization, educational policy formation, and the modalities of transfer. In doing so, the book pushes for a reevaluation of several core assumptions of transfer and educational research more generally.


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CHAPTER ONE THEORIZING EDUCATIONAL POLICY TRANSFER AND GLOBALIZATION This chapter introduces the existing theoretical and conceptual land- scape underpinning, informing, and, eventually, reformulated by the present study. After briefly surveying the general contours of the flood of recent work on globalization and education, it explores specific points of commonality and contention within one of the richest debates in the field of comparative and international education: opposing per- spectives on an apparent convergence of educational policy worldwide – an exchange that fundamentally revolves around transfer themes. It ar- gues that there are three points of contention in particular that separate the two sides, and suggests that notions of educational ideal-types and transitologies are needed to complement and clarify aspects of that de- bate. It then goes on to makes a similar case for tapping, but also re- working the rich body of work surrounding issues of educational trans- fer that has emerged in recent years – specifically the Oxford Models. The overall attempt is to show how key questions coalesce and interlock across all three bodies of work as they are melded together here, pre- senting themselves as the most promising modes of exploring not only relationships between globalization and educational policy transfer, but also locating – here recalling the project laid out in the Introduction – the voice of comparative education therein. 20 Rappleye: Transfer in an Era of Globalization GLOBALIZATION AND COMPARATIVE EDUCATION: THE CHALLENGES OF DEFINING THE SECOND DECADE What is the relationship between globalization and education? How are globalization processes impacting...

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