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Religion and Political Theory: Secularism, Accommodation and The New Challenges of Religious Diversity, Edited by Jonathan Seglow and Andrew Shorten

Market-Making of, in, and around European Higher Education

Political Economy
Critical Theory
Panel Number
Panel Chair
Janja Komljenovic
University of Lancaster
Panel Discussant
Susan Robertson
University of Cambridge

09/09/2016 09:00 - 10:40
Building: Faculty of Arts Floor: 1 Room: FA131
The panels’ focus is the study of market-making in the education sector; it aims first to analyse the outcomes of marketizing the education sector, and second to develop conceptual grammar and analytical approaches that would allow unpacking the complexities of marketizing processes. Theoretically and conceptually panels understand markets as arenas of social interactions. Markets need to be constructed and framed; they demand work, investment, and strategic action; and need order, predictability and trust (Beckert 2009; Beckert 2005; Çalışkan and Callon 2009; Çalışkan and Callon 2010; Peck 2005; Block 2003; Fligstein and Dauter 2007). Markets are always culturally, cognitively, structurally and politically embedded (Zukin and DiMaggio 1990) and need to be instituted (Block 2003; Polanyi 1944; Polanyi 1957). These are processes full of frictions and struggles resulting in spatially and sectorially uneven expansion of markets.

We are witnessing attempts to marketise the education sector itself (for example tuition fees, intellectual property rights), but also the rise of ‘edu-business’ – huge diversity of companies and organisations selling things and services to education institutions (for example branding, social media management, student recruitment, data, software, and so on). In other words, there are markets appearing and expanding inside and outside of the education sector, which is a dynamic working on re-bordering and transforming the sector. The role of the state is crucial in these processes albeit exercised in different ways across national and regional spaces. In principle the state is either changing legislation and structure to support expanding markets in and around the higher education sector, or (selectively) protecting (some of) its higher education sector form market forces. Nevertheless, rescaling of the higher education governance and entry of new actors into the sector are the two phenomena that are by now universal. Much more needs to be known about these new phenomena in order to understand outputs and outcomes for the higher education sector and societies at large.

The themes that these panels are interested in are (the list is not exhaustive):
- Which are the markets in higher education, how do they get constructed, who are the actors involved, for whose benefit and what are the outcomes
- Privatization of provision and regulation in higher education, the rise of transnational private authority, politics of higher education supply, politics of funding
- Transformations in figures’ identities and labour: changing roles of students, researchers, leaders, private companies, reforms in teachers’ labour - denationalising, branding and flexibilising
- Trade in services agreements
- Mixed models and forms of public-private partnerships in education delivery and governance

Paper List

Title Details
Education markets under construction View Paper Details
Making and constraining a higher education market in postwar Japan View Paper Details
The Governance of Decentralized Cooperation in Collectively Organized Training Systems View Paper Details
The public in the private: The role of international coordination service firms View Paper Details
Trading in education futures: between profit and loss/the political and the economic View Paper Details
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