Education Governance in Action

Lessons from Case Studies

image of Education Governance in Action

Governing multi-level education systems requires governance models that balance responsiveness to local diversity with the ability to ensure national objectives. This delicate equilibrium is difficult to achieve given the complexity of many education systems. Countries are therefore increasingly looking for examples of good practice and models of effective modern governance that they can adapt to their own needs.

Education Governance in Action: Lessons from Case Studies bridges theory and practice by connecting major themes in education governance to real-life reform efforts in a variety of countries. It builds upon in-depth case studies of education reform efforts in Flanders (Belgium), Germany, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland and Sweden. The case studies are complemented by country examples of efforts to restore and sustain trust in their education systems. Together they provide a rich illustration of modern governance challenges - and successes.

The volume highlights the importance of the interdependence between knowledge and governance and focuses on essential components for modern education governance: accountability, capacity building and strategic thinking. It sets the agenda for thinking about the flexible and adaptive systems necessary for governing education in today's complex world. This publication will be of interest to policy makers, education leaders, teachers, the education research community and all those interested in education governance and complexity.


Priority setting, steering and policy learning in education

Central to policy making in complex education systems is the question of what kinds of governance mechanisms are effective for sustainable change. In this context the policy process is approached as a cycle comprising priority setting, policy steering and policy learning while acknowledging the fluidity between the stages. The chapter examines challenges as well as drivers for successful policy design and implementation. It pays special attention to the role of knowledge in defining priorities and designing interventions, and the need for matching support and pressure to secure aligned action and common direction at the implementation stage. Equally central, the chapter highlights policy monitoring and evaluation as tools to improve education policies and eventually shape a sustainable culture of learning within our education systems.


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