Andreas M. Kazamias, Dimitris M. Mattheou
The comparison reveals two very different examples of higher education state policies and state university relationships in the two countries. Singapore exercises a very tight control over universitities while Cyprus employs a policy of university autonomy and academic freedom.
The paper suggests that these differences can be explained as the result of three factors : a) the different degree of industrial development, b) the different demands of the industries developed, and c) the different political and cultural context, and more specifically, the different hierarchy of values in the two countries. The last difference determines to a large extent the different strategy with which the two states try to achieve their legitimacy.
The cases of Belgium and Ireland
Nikos Papadakis, Mark Murphy & Theodora Rosaki
the relation of the University-Adult-Education policies to the active employment policies and macro-economic policies, and
the whole political, ideological and economic context within trends in Adult Education are formatted and changes take shape.
The focus is on two “national cases”, namely the case of Belgium (including both Flanders and Wallonia) and the case of Ireland. What is actually attempted here is a comparative approach of the two cases, in terms of their policies on University Adult Education (tertium comparationis), before and after the Bologna Follow Up Process towards the establishment of the European Higher Education Area.
The paper initially analyses the nature and the components of the post-industrial Educational Policy, focusing on the new trends in Adult Education and Higher Education Policy,
in the context of the internationalization of the economy and the state, (of) the relevant movement of economic power from the national to the international arena and (of) the supranational rationality of the European integration, and
in relation to the trends concerning training and employment.
The focus is on the role of the changing political economy of the E.U. and the European Strategy for Employment to the transformation of the Adult Education structures and methods, in the context of the revisited “human-recourse-development” model. Inevitably the ascertained growing involvement of Higher Education Institutes to Adult Education and LLL projects is taken into consideration.
On the basis of the abovementioned theoretical discussion, we proceed to the phenomenological presentation of
the context for adult education in universities and institutions of higher education and
the main developments and changes concerning the policies in University Adult Education, in Belgium and Ireland.
Special emphasis is laid on issues such as the forms of organization of University Adult Education, its relation to the broader cultural context and to the existing political system (especially in the case of Belgium), issues of supply and demand, the legal status of University Adult Education, providers and competitors, practices and methods, the role of ICTs (especially in the delivery of ODL), modes of certification, issues of funding and governmentality, and more particular issues (i.e. the “recognition of vocational qualifications” and non-formal apprenticeship in the context of University Adult Education programmes, the operation of the Open University in each case, the role of the traditional Universities, the issue of the professionalisation of adult educators).
At the end, the focus moves on the way the supranational logic of the European integration and the relevant movement towards the strengthening of economies of scale within the EU affect the new tendencies in the “national” University-Adult-Education policies. Via the final comparative synopsis of convergences and divergences between the two “national” cases and the subsequent interpretative analysis of the common trends, initiatives, discourses, practices and evenmore common antinomies and counterpoints to the abovementioned trends, the paper attempts:
to synopsize the major forms of the state retreat concerning the policy and institutional dimensions of University Adult Education,
to explore why adult education (and furthermore its tertiary version) is a social policy domain where the European Union gains more and more control (in the terms of the decision making process),
to trace some of the political and economical reasons behind adult education policies an their growing connection to the logics of flexibility, adaptability and market- orientation.
‘Lifestyle’, ‘individualised’, and ‘narcissistic’ identities constructed by consuming material, symbolic and visual commodities are dominating developed societies and undermining feelings of wholeness and belonging. As a reaction to consumerist individualism and the global economic and political forces large parts of modern societies seek affirmation in the traditional values of religion, family, nation, and ethnicity. To this it should be added the widely observed loss of trust to politics and therefore the crisis of liberal democracy.
It seems that the European Union is fully aware and
puzzled by these trends and it seeks policies and measures which promote the creation of a new basis of solidarity amongst the Union’s peoples. In other words, the EU is seeking to create its own identity. So far this endeavour – endlessly ‘disturbed’ by nationalistic movements, enlargement processes, decision-making crises and suspicion for its ‘democratic deficit’ – has hardly succeeded.