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Policy, philanthropy and profit: The OECD’s PISA for schools and new modes of heterarchical educational governance

Version 2 2024-05-30, 16:03
Version 1 2017-05-24, 02:36
journal contribution
posted on 2024-05-30, 16:03 authored by SD Lewis
This paper examines the development and administration of Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) for Schools – a new testing instrument of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development – to demonstrate the relevance of heterarchical processes to educational governance. Drawing suggestively across new ‘relational’ thinking around policy networks, and new spatialities associated with globalisation, the research shows how PISA for Schools helps constitute new spaces and relations of, and for, educational governance. Informed by policy documents and interviews conducted with 33 key actors across the PISA for Schools policy cycle, I show how PISA for Schools typifies contemporary educational policy-making and governance via the export of ‘statework’ to private actors and agencies, including intergovernmental organisations, philanthropic foundations and edu-businesses. I conclude by considering how treating PISA for Schools, and other similar education services, as a ‘product’ produces a potentially dangerous blurring of public and private benefits, with the potential that (private) profit might ultimately trump (public) education.

History

Journal

Comparative Education

Volume

53

Pagination

518-537

Location

London, Eng.

ISSN

0305-0068

Language

eng

Publication classification

C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal

Copyright notice

2017 Informa UK

Issue

4

Publisher

Taylor & Francis