Stream 21: The Politics of Education

Anna Pultar and Niccolo Durazzi

Education policy has gained high salience particularly over the last two decades as policy-makers expect it to contribute to crucial social policy goals such as equality of opportunity, social inclusion and social cohesion. Yet, education policy has been until recently at the margins of welfare state research, even though education systems have undergone significant changes, which have been accompanied by considerable political controversy in many countries.

This stream aims to support education policy gain an important place in the study of social policy. We welcome submissions that focus on the politics of education. We are particularly interested in papers that explore drivers of education policy reforms (e.g. structural changes; individual and collective actors’ preferences and interests; institutions; ideas and discourse), trajectories of institutional change, and associated socio-economic outcomes (e.g. social inequality; social mobility; public attitudes).

We welcome contributions that examine these issues with reference to any component of an education system (e.g. ECEC; school education; vocational education; higher education; life-long learning). Methodologically, we are open to a range of different contributions, including single case studies, comparative case studies or large-N designs. We would like to bring together contributions from different neighbouring disciplines (e.g. politics; political economy; social policy; sociology) to stimulate discussion on complementary theoretical and methodological approaches to the study of the politics of education.