Public-private Partnerships: Challenges and Consequences for Education
Gita Steiner-Khamsi, Professor, Interdisciplinary Programmes
Maison de la paix, Genève
A project of the modern nation-state, compulsory education is national in terms of accreditation, teaching content and language of instruction. However, the private sector managed to scale up its influence on what schools teach and how public education is regulated. What is more, private providers are able to orient themselves and operate both at national and international levels. But this is not without consequences. Precisely because the private sector has become so influential, it is essential to ask critical questions: what happens when business thinking notably the preoccupation with cost-benefit, demand-supply and measurable outcomes drives school reform? Should the (global) private sector “disrupt” and “innovate” (national) public education systems?
Gita Steiner-Khamsi is Professor at Columbia University (Teachers College), New York and at the Graduate Institute. She is Director of the Network for International Policies and Cooperation in Education and Training (NORRAG), an associate programme of the Institute.
A graduate from the University of Zurich (1983, Dr. Phil. in social psychology with minors in sociology and anthropology), she worked for the first ten years of her career at the Ministry of Education of the Canton of Zurich.
She published eight books and numerous journal articles and reports on topics related to global governance and education, global education industry and public-private partnership in education.
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