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This paper offers a novel analysis of how Nepal is delivering its commitment to secondary education provision that is advancing environmental sustainability, tracing a trajectory that begins with national policies relating to environmental sustainability and incorporating the national curriculum framework, textbooks, pedagogies used in classrooms, and learner experiences and anticipated actions. We consider Nepal’s education about and for environmental sustainability in the context of theories of environmental justice, and question if and how secondary provision might promote the behavioural change that Nepal recognises is vital for environmental sustainability. Qualitative data were generated through policy analysis, critical content analysis of secondary-level curriculum and textbooks, classroom observations, semi-structured interviews with 15 teachers and 4 headteachers, and a range of in-person activities with 24 students in purposively selected four community secondary schools in the three diverse locations across Nepal. The results illuminate pronounced disconnections across modalities that indicate incoherence and unresolved debates in the underlying narrative of what environmental sustainability is and the role of education in addressing it. Our findings suggest that learners’ ideas, opinions, thinking and experiences should be encouraged and celebrated in the classroom to aid learners in translating conceptual learning into practical, sustainable behaviours, as well as to contribute to environmental justice. The findings appeal to the concerned stakeholders for their consideration of future policy and programme development that promotes environmental justice through education and establishes a connection between classroom learning and students’ lived experiences through a participatory approach, collaboration, and critical and creative thinking.

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This paper explores how Ugandan secondary school learners experience schooling in English-medium schools where the use of English only is strictly enforced. We conceptualise the ways that the learners sit at the intersection of direct, systemic and cultural violence that in turn impacts their educational experiences. We particularly focus on instances of direct violence through corporal punishment, and the ways that such violence, and associated fear, are part of many learners’ everyday schooling experiences. We demonstrate this through presentation of findings from thematic analysis of individual and focus group interviews with 64 learners at two public and two private secondary schools in the Amuru and Kitgum districts of Northern Uganda. Our conclusions advocate for greater attention to be paid to the ways that changes to enforced English-only policies could support more positive well-being and educational outcomes.

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This paper draws on findings from the JustEd study to discuss the shallow pedagogies that have emerged in Peru in the context of learner-centred and outcomes-based reforms that have been poorly implemented in a context with many limitations in terms of policy orientations, resources, and teacher training and support. These pedagogies promote little to no critical thinking, are disconnected from students’ experiences and do not encourage them to problematise reality nor to grasp complexity. Such pedagogies constitute a form of epistemic injustice in that they do not help to develop students’ capacity to participate as equals in the consumption and production of knowledge. Through this, these pedagogies also limit education’s potential contributions to justice, peace and sustainability. Our discussion of shallow pedagogies leads us to articulate some more positive elements of what rich and just pedagogies might entail.

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All international agreements recognise that sustainable development, equity and poverty alleviation are preconditions for the substantial societal and technological transformations required to limit global warming to 1.5°C. A growing body of literature indicates that while climate change undermines the progress of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), climate actions also pose several trade-offs with them. Climate adaptation has a largely synergistic relationship with SDGs across various socio-economic contexts. However, climate mitigation’s relationship with SDGs is far more complex. While the need to decarbonise is universal, the pathways to deliver deep decarbonisation vary across contexts and scales and are located within the local socio-economic realities besides local environmental factors. This paper argues that (1) climate mitigation measures in countries like India – with rising income inequality and high social diversity in caste, religion and region – need a tailored assessment approach, (2) carefully mediating climate mitigation measures – like deep decarbonisation – at the local level is crucial to enable transformative change required to meet the Paris Agreement and the UN Agenda 2030, (3) enabling ‘just’ deep decarbonisation or SDG-enabled decarbonisation at the local level requires addressing unmet needs of the vulnerable population even at the cost of increased emissions, and (4) sector-specific decarbonisation strategies at the national level must be translated into the local area’s social, economic, environmental and institutional realities. This paper grounds this approach using the example of the transport sector and applies it in a mid-sized city of India, Udaipur, to illustrate the argument.

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This piece elaborates on a ‘new way of thinking’ (Einstein, 1946) that would contribute to overcoming the challenge of climate change and its impacts. This ‘new way’ will have us go beyond using facts and figures alone to persuade and cajole. It will have us stretching our moral imagination (Johnson, 2016) and empathising with people very different from ourselves. It will have us investing in processes of exchange which support the co-creation of knowledge and the future we want together.

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This chapter focuses on the dynamic but often conflicting global forces and local responses in the field of education reform. Global economic forces drove certain aspects of the case of Costa Rica. For instance, pressure from multinational corporations induced the Costa Rican government to change its national curriculum. These corporations needed more skilled labour to continue their operations in Costa Rica and called on the government to modernize its education system to meet the needs of capitalist development. In 2015 the Public Education Ministry (Ministerio de Educación Publica [MEP]) implemented education reforms containing a new curriculum to retain technology companies and satisfy capitalist development. With Costa Rica being a hybrid social-democratic, capitalist system, the MEP had to find a way to blend the concepts and practices that underlie the traditional Costa Rican vision with that of the foreign investors. This blending undermined the legitimacy of the reform effort and threatened to exacerbate gaps in student learning across the country. In response, the MEP turned to international guidelines for planetary citizenship to inform their inclusive education efforts and developed the Tecno@prender programme to ensure students in socioeconomically vulnerable zones had full access to technology.

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In 2005, the Guatemalan Ministry of Education (MINEDUC) introduced the National Basic Curriculum (CNB). While innovative in its scope and design, financial constraints limited curriculum distribution and implementation. To facilitate access, a Guatemalan citizen living in the US began digitizing CNB onto cnbGuatemala.org in 2012. The wiki website modularized CNB by grade level and content area, while also including hyperlinks to relevant open educational resources (OERs). Through an analysis of institutional documents, website analytics, survey data, and focus group feedback, this chapter investigates the development, use, and growth of cnbGuatemala.org’s local, national, and international network of developers, allies, and users. This chapter uses four concepts articulated within Actor–Network Theory (ANT) – problematization, interessement, enrolment, and mobilization – to better understand how the network was assembled and reconfigured over time, including during the COVID-19 pandemic, where website traffic grew significantly, suggesting opportunities for replication or scale. Finally, the discussion highlights limitations and opportunities for further OER development and use, particularly through wikis.

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This book brings together researchers of – and research on – Central America and the Latin Caribbean (CALC) to explore the dynamics of global forces that challenge education systems in the region and to highlight the local efforts that seek to address, mitigate, and even counteract these forces. Examples of the global forces to which chapters in this volume are attentive include macro-economic pressures, geopolitical intervention, neocolonial relationships, global pandemics, international policy trends, the influence of international organizations, and transnational gang networks. While there exists literature on the global forces that have historically and generally affected CALC, and while some literature documents the challenges that face the education systems of this region, there are few publications that bring these two sets of issues into conversation. This is an important gap that warrants critical attention, for both sets of issues are intricately related.

This book addresses questions related to how education is contributing to maintaining and overcoming challenges and inequalities in the face of global and national pressures, and how national and local educational initiatives play out within the constraints imposed by their contexts. While the volume is oriented by an international political economy framework, each chapter presents recent empirical work that speaks directly to global-local dynamics.

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Central America is a region about which comparatively little academic literature is produced that focuses on the political-economic dynamics that constrain education reform. However, one research project stands out as an exception. This research project, carried out from 2018 to 2022 by a network of researchers from the region, was entitled ‘Quality Education in Central America: Dynamics and Tensions among Models of Education and Development’. It brought together scholars from four Central American countries (El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua) to produce case studies on the global-, national-, and local-level tensions that have surrounded the development and implementation of education reform in these countries between 1990 and 2010. The present chapter presents insights from a cross-case analysis of these studies through the lens of international political economy. Findings focus on processes of policy making and how these are affected by such considerations as geopolitical constraints, capitalist pressures, and international organizations; the ways in which different reform visions are communicated, interpreted, and experienced; and the manner in which tensions across political-economic forces and interest groups are resolved. This last dimension refers to the way in which education helps to mediate and resolve tensions that arise between the state and capital in the context of capitalist development.

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This book brings together researchers of – and research on – Central America and the Latin Caribbean (CALC) to explore the dynamics of global forces that challenge education systems in the region and to highlight the local efforts that seek to address, mitigate, and even counteract these forces. Examples of the global forces to which chapters in this volume are attentive include macro-economic pressures, geopolitical intervention, neocolonial relationships, global pandemics, international policy trends, the influence of international organizations, and transnational gang networks. While there exists literature on the global forces that have historically and generally affected CALC, and while some literature documents the challenges that face the education systems of this region, there are few publications that bring these two sets of issues into conversation. This is an important gap that warrants critical attention, for both sets of issues are intricately related.

This book addresses questions related to how education is contributing to maintaining and overcoming challenges and inequalities in the face of global and national pressures, and how national and local educational initiatives play out within the constraints imposed by their contexts. While the volume is oriented by an international political economy framework, each chapter presents recent empirical work that speaks directly to global-local dynamics.

Restricted access