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  • Author or Editor: Andrew Wilkins x
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This chapter draws on primary data that details how school governors in England are being trained and responsibilised in new ways to enhance the integrity of market-based developments in public education. I consider the extent to which corporate strategies are evident in the kinds of everyday work engaged with and produced by agents of school governance, namely school governors. Moreover, I explore whether ‘corporate elitism’ – the capacity and willingness of school governing bodies to reconstitute themselves in the image of corporate boards – is implicit to decisions concerning who and why certain people get to enter governance roles, and consider the implications of these reforms for any robust, democratic system of school governance.

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The field of education policy research is a dense, crowded space owing to its complicated relationship to different intellectual histories and the influence of various ontologies or ‘turns’. These range from the ‘postmodern turn’ and the ‘managerial turn’ to more recently the ‘digital turn’ and the ‘governance turn’. The relationship between policy and politics also makes it a combative space in which vying interest groups engage in intense epistemological wrangling over the purpose of education. Education policy research is a space in which the possibilities and problems of education are not only represented but continually negotiated and contested from the perspective of multiple vantage points and normative commitments. Navigating this messy terrain can therefore be both engrossing and challenging.

To aid comprehension and clarity, this book describes the history, contribution and application of various keywords in the field of education policy research (98 in total), from lofty concepts like ‘genealogy’ and ‘topology’ to more defined, often more problematic terms like ‘deliverology’ and ‘micro-credential’. The book includes keywords that are representative of various sub-disciplines of education policy research, such as ‘environmental and sustainability policy analysis’ and ‘indigenous policy analysis’. The book therefore is designed as a reference, learning and teaching tool to assist students, educators and researchers with:

• complex learning and teaching

• wider and background reading and knowledge building

• critical scholarship and research

• interdisciplinary thinking and writing

• theory development and application

Restricted access

The field of education policy research is a dense, crowded space owing to its complicated relationship to different intellectual histories and the influence of various ontologies or ‘turns’. These range from the ‘postmodern turn’ and the ‘managerial turn’ to more recently the ‘digital turn’ and the ‘governance turn’. The relationship between policy and politics also makes it a combative space in which vying interest groups engage in intense epistemological wrangling over the purpose of education. Education policy research is a space in which the possibilities and problems of education are not only represented but continually negotiated and contested from the perspective of multiple vantage points and normative commitments. Navigating this messy terrain can therefore be both engrossing and challenging.

To aid comprehension and clarity, this book describes the history, contribution and application of various keywords in the field of education policy research (98 in total), from lofty concepts like ‘genealogy’ and ‘topology’ to more defined, often more problematic terms like ‘deliverology’ and ‘micro-credential’. The book includes keywords that are representative of various sub-disciplines of education policy research, such as ‘environmental and sustainability policy analysis’ and ‘indigenous policy analysis’. The book therefore is designed as a reference, learning and teaching tool to assist students, educators and researchers with:

• complex learning and teaching

• wider and background reading and knowledge building

• critical scholarship and research

• interdisciplinary thinking and writing

• theory development and application

Restricted access

The field of education policy research is a dense, crowded space owing to its complicated relationship to different intellectual histories and the influence of various ontologies or ‘turns’. These range from the ‘postmodern turn’ and the ‘managerial turn’ to more recently the ‘digital turn’ and the ‘governance turn’. The relationship between policy and politics also makes it a combative space in which vying interest groups engage in intense epistemological wrangling over the purpose of education. Education policy research is a space in which the possibilities and problems of education are not only represented but continually negotiated and contested from the perspective of multiple vantage points and normative commitments. Navigating this messy terrain can therefore be both engrossing and challenging.

To aid comprehension and clarity, this book describes the history, contribution and application of various keywords in the field of education policy research (98 in total), from lofty concepts like ‘genealogy’ and ‘topology’ to more defined, often more problematic terms like ‘deliverology’ and ‘micro-credential’. The book includes keywords that are representative of various sub-disciplines of education policy research, such as ‘environmental and sustainability policy analysis’ and ‘indigenous policy analysis’. The book therefore is designed as a reference, learning and teaching tool to assist students, educators and researchers with:

• complex learning and teaching

• wider and background reading and knowledge building

• critical scholarship and research

• interdisciplinary thinking and writing

• theory development and application

Restricted access

The field of education policy research is a dense, crowded space owing to its complicated relationship to different intellectual histories and the influence of various ontologies or ‘turns’. These range from the ‘postmodern turn’ and the ‘managerial turn’ to more recently the ‘digital turn’ and the ‘governance turn’. The relationship between policy and politics also makes it a combative space in which vying interest groups engage in intense epistemological wrangling over the purpose of education. Education policy research is a space in which the possibilities and problems of education are not only represented but continually negotiated and contested from the perspective of multiple vantage points and normative commitments. Navigating this messy terrain can therefore be both engrossing and challenging.

To aid comprehension and clarity, this book describes the history, contribution and application of various keywords in the field of education policy research (98 in total), from lofty concepts like ‘genealogy’ and ‘topology’ to more defined, often more problematic terms like ‘deliverology’ and ‘micro-credential’. The book includes keywords that are representative of various sub-disciplines of education policy research, such as ‘environmental and sustainability policy analysis’ and ‘indigenous policy analysis’. The book therefore is designed as a reference, learning and teaching tool to assist students, educators and researchers with:

• complex learning and teaching

• wider and background reading and knowledge building

• critical scholarship and research

• interdisciplinary thinking and writing

• theory development and application

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In this introduction, we reflect on writing, arguing and thinking as vital meaning-making activities driven by different ethical and normative commitments. These reflections are used to support a view of education policy research as fraught with ambiguity and therefore a view of the field as messy epistemological/ontological work. In turn, we outline the purpose and design of the book with a focus on the selection and significance of the keywords described and their importance to tracing these complex intellectual histories and their influence on the contemporary field of education policy research. Here we explain the political and personal choices that have shaped the structure and content of the book as well as outline the benefits of the book as a conceptual toolbox to supplement learning and understanding.

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To aid comprehension and clarity concerning the field of education policy research, each entry describes the history, contribution and application of various keywords through drawing on relevant literatures and debates from the Global North and Global South. This includes: specifying their ontological and epistemological aims (and origins); making explicit their relationship or opposition to different analytical traditions and policy settlements; situating their emergence as a condition of specific social and political histories and movements (where appropriate); and demonstrating evidence of applied theory through engagement with relevant literature and studies. In turn, we envisage students, educators and researchers engaging with the text to better situate their research (or positionality) historically and epistemologically as well as assist their navigation and use of key concepts and theories.

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A Conceptual Toolbox

The field of education policy research is a dense, crowded space owing to its complicated relationship to different intellectual histories and the influence of various ontologies or ‘turns’. To aid comprehension and clarity, this book describes the history, contribution and application of over 90 keywords in the field of education policy research. It is designed as a reference, learning and teaching tool to assist students, educators and researchers with:

• complex learning and teaching;

• wider and background reading and knowledge building;

• critical scholarship and research;

• interdisciplinary thinking and writing;

• theory development and application.

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The field of education policy research is a dense, crowded space owing to its complicated relationship to different intellectual histories and the influence of various ontologies or ‘turns’. These range from the ‘postmodern turn’ and the ‘managerial turn’ to more recently the ‘digital turn’ and the ‘governance turn’. The relationship between policy and politics also makes it a combative space in which vying interest groups engage in intense epistemological wrangling over the purpose of education. Education policy research is a space in which the possibilities and problems of education are not only represented but continually negotiated and contested from the perspective of multiple vantage points and normative commitments. Navigating this messy terrain can therefore be both engrossing and challenging.

To aid comprehension and clarity, this book describes the history, contribution and application of various keywords in the field of education policy research (98 in total), from lofty concepts like ‘genealogy’ and ‘topology’ to more defined, often more problematic terms like ‘deliverology’ and ‘micro-credential’. The book includes keywords that are representative of various sub-disciplines of education policy research, such as ‘environmental and sustainability policy analysis’ and ‘indigenous policy analysis’. The book therefore is designed as a reference, learning and teaching tool to assist students, educators and researchers with:

• complex learning and teaching

• wider and background reading and knowledge building

• critical scholarship and research

• interdisciplinary thinking and writing

• theory development and application

Restricted access

The field of education policy research is a dense, crowded space owing to its complicated relationship to different intellectual histories and the influence of various ontologies or ‘turns’. These range from the ‘postmodern turn’ and the ‘managerial turn’ to more recently the ‘digital turn’ and the ‘governance turn’. The relationship between policy and politics also makes it a combative space in which vying interest groups engage in intense epistemological wrangling over the purpose of education. Education policy research is a space in which the possibilities and problems of education are not only represented but continually negotiated and contested from the perspective of multiple vantage points and normative commitments. Navigating this messy terrain can therefore be both engrossing and challenging.

To aid comprehension and clarity, this book describes the history, contribution and application of various keywords in the field of education policy research (98 in total), from lofty concepts like ‘genealogy’ and ‘topology’ to more defined, often more problematic terms like ‘deliverology’ and ‘micro-credential’. The book includes keywords that are representative of various sub-disciplines of education policy research, such as ‘environmental and sustainability policy analysis’ and ‘indigenous policy analysis’. The book therefore is designed as a reference, learning and teaching tool to assist students, educators and researchers with:

• complex learning and teaching

• wider and background reading and knowledge building

• critical scholarship and research

• interdisciplinary thinking and writing

• theory development and application

Restricted access