Vocational Education, Transitions, Marginalisation and Social Justice in the Nordic Countries – Reflections on the Special Issue

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

This paper engages with and reflects on the arguments developed by contributors to the special issue. These papers serve to provide a corrective to English and, on occasion, European perceptions, which often view the Nordic countries as being all of a piece and beacons of progressivism. The contributors provide analyses that not only point to the impact of neo-liberalism upon vocational education and training but also the different ways in which it is delivered across the Nordic countries. They alert us to vocational education and training’s complexity and varied forms. Nevertheless, it appears there are a set of repertoires that can be mobilised to address the relationship between vocational education and training and youth transitions to work and vocational study, which seem to circulate across time and place. The circulation of these models suggests they fail to address the deeper issues facing vocational education and training, namely the relation of it in particular and ‘academic’ education in general to capitalism, and, importantly, the salience of these processes in the current conjuncture. These relations raise questions about the reproduction of class relations and the specificity of the socio-economic contexts. This leads to a consideration of notions of social justice and an interrogation of vocational education and training with this particular question in mind. An important issue that needs to be explored is the way in which the curriculum opens up or closes down access to powerful knowledge. Whilst education, in Bernstein’s words, ‘cannot compensate for society’, can it nevertheless be a resource in the transformative struggle for a just society?

LanguageEnglish
Pages376-384
Number of pages9
JournalEuropean Educational Research Journal
Volume18
Issue number3
Early online date1 May 2019
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2019

Fingerprint

vocational education
Vocational Education
social justice
open curriculum
progressivism
neoliberalism
capitalist society
education
resources
economics
Society

Cite this

@article{b01556a1f8da49d9b9b65ab0ced80251,
title = "Vocational Education, Transitions, Marginalisation and Social Justice in the Nordic Countries – Reflections on the Special Issue",
abstract = "This paper engages with and reflects on the arguments developed by contributors to the special issue. These papers serve to provide a corrective to English and, on occasion, European perceptions, which often view the Nordic countries as being all of a piece and beacons of progressivism. The contributors provide analyses that not only point to the impact of neo-liberalism upon vocational education and training but also the different ways in which it is delivered across the Nordic countries. They alert us to vocational education and training’s complexity and varied forms. Nevertheless, it appears there are a set of repertoires that can be mobilised to address the relationship between vocational education and training and youth transitions to work and vocational study, which seem to circulate across time and place. The circulation of these models suggests they fail to address the deeper issues facing vocational education and training, namely the relation of it in particular and ‘academic’ education in general to capitalism, and, importantly, the salience of these processes in the current conjuncture. These relations raise questions about the reproduction of class relations and the specificity of the socio-economic contexts. This leads to a consideration of notions of social justice and an interrogation of vocational education and training with this particular question in mind. An important issue that needs to be explored is the way in which the curriculum opens up or closes down access to powerful knowledge. Whilst education, in Bernstein’s words, ‘cannot compensate for society’, can it nevertheless be a resource in the transformative struggle for a just society?",
keywords = "vocational education and training, youth transitions, Nordic countries, Social justice, VET curriculum, education settlements, education policy, neo-liberalism, Vocational education and training",
author = "James Avis",
year = "2019",
month = "5",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1177/1474904119845250",
language = "English",
volume = "18",
pages = "376--384",
journal = "European Educational Research Journal",
issn = "1474-9041",
publisher = "Symposium Journals Ltd",
number = "3",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Vocational Education, Transitions, Marginalisation and Social Justice in the Nordic Countries – Reflections on the Special Issue

AU - Avis, James

PY - 2019/5/1

Y1 - 2019/5/1

N2 - This paper engages with and reflects on the arguments developed by contributors to the special issue. These papers serve to provide a corrective to English and, on occasion, European perceptions, which often view the Nordic countries as being all of a piece and beacons of progressivism. The contributors provide analyses that not only point to the impact of neo-liberalism upon vocational education and training but also the different ways in which it is delivered across the Nordic countries. They alert us to vocational education and training’s complexity and varied forms. Nevertheless, it appears there are a set of repertoires that can be mobilised to address the relationship between vocational education and training and youth transitions to work and vocational study, which seem to circulate across time and place. The circulation of these models suggests they fail to address the deeper issues facing vocational education and training, namely the relation of it in particular and ‘academic’ education in general to capitalism, and, importantly, the salience of these processes in the current conjuncture. These relations raise questions about the reproduction of class relations and the specificity of the socio-economic contexts. This leads to a consideration of notions of social justice and an interrogation of vocational education and training with this particular question in mind. An important issue that needs to be explored is the way in which the curriculum opens up or closes down access to powerful knowledge. Whilst education, in Bernstein’s words, ‘cannot compensate for society’, can it nevertheless be a resource in the transformative struggle for a just society?

AB - This paper engages with and reflects on the arguments developed by contributors to the special issue. These papers serve to provide a corrective to English and, on occasion, European perceptions, which often view the Nordic countries as being all of a piece and beacons of progressivism. The contributors provide analyses that not only point to the impact of neo-liberalism upon vocational education and training but also the different ways in which it is delivered across the Nordic countries. They alert us to vocational education and training’s complexity and varied forms. Nevertheless, it appears there are a set of repertoires that can be mobilised to address the relationship between vocational education and training and youth transitions to work and vocational study, which seem to circulate across time and place. The circulation of these models suggests they fail to address the deeper issues facing vocational education and training, namely the relation of it in particular and ‘academic’ education in general to capitalism, and, importantly, the salience of these processes in the current conjuncture. These relations raise questions about the reproduction of class relations and the specificity of the socio-economic contexts. This leads to a consideration of notions of social justice and an interrogation of vocational education and training with this particular question in mind. An important issue that needs to be explored is the way in which the curriculum opens up or closes down access to powerful knowledge. Whilst education, in Bernstein’s words, ‘cannot compensate for society’, can it nevertheless be a resource in the transformative struggle for a just society?

KW - vocational education and training

KW - youth transitions

KW - Nordic countries

KW - Social justice

KW - VET curriculum

KW - education settlements

KW - education policy

KW - neo-liberalism

KW - Vocational education and training

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=85065172614&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1177/1474904119845250

DO - 10.1177/1474904119845250

M3 - Article

VL - 18

SP - 376

EP - 384

JO - European Educational Research Journal

T2 - European Educational Research Journal

JF - European Educational Research Journal

SN - 1474-9041

IS - 3

ER -