The first decades of the 21st century have witnessed unprecedented global political cooperation directed toward school teachers and the importance of quality education. This chapter discusses the current developments in the global educational policy field with a particular focus on teacher policy and the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development’s (OECD) program Teaching and Learning International Survey (TALIS). In adopting a critical realist approach and based on a literature review, this chapter provides a synthesis of the governance mechanisms, contexts, and outcomes of TALIS. TALIS is treated as an observable outcome resulting from the actions of an underlying mechanism – information-processing policy instruments – and two contextual conditions. The first contextual condition suggests that there is a predominance of the knowledge-based economy paradigm in the political discourse, linking school teachers to economic growth and competitiveness. The second condition is provided by the consensus that education, notwithstanding technological developments, in the foreseeable future will remain a labor-intensive sector requiring a teacher workforce, as reflected in the representation of diverse interests in the TALIS programme and their commitment to find compromises on teacher policy. We will be able to assess in future decades the extent to which the mechanism will be triggered with regard to TALIS. However, in giving voice to teachers working in different settings, TALIS findings are not easy to reconcile with human capital theory or translate into “best practice” recommendations for teacher policies that can help drive knowledge-based economies.
Sorensen, T.B. (2016), "Teachers and the Global Educational Policy Field", The Global Educational Policy Environment in the Fourth Industrial Revolution (Public Policy and Governance, Vol. 26), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, pp. 59-84. https://doi.org/10.1108/S2053-769720160000026003Download as .RIS
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