No publication for old(er) men

Posted in: Comment, New Publications

I've been reading Monitoring Education for Global Citizenship: A Contribution to Debate, but it's no publication for old(er) men.  It's near-unreadable on screen because of the PDF formatting, and you need a magnifying glass to read the paper copy.  It's (un)clearly meant for the visually unchallenged and acute; maybe there's a message there.

It is a publication from DEEEP, which is "a project of the DARE Forum of CONCORD, the European Development NGO confederation."  DEEEP says:

As facilitator of the European development education sector, DEEEP and the CONCORD DARE Forum aim to be a driver for new transformative approaches to development and education through working towards systemic change and active global citizenship.  We believe that research has a vital role to play in promoting innovation within the field of education.  We adopt a participatory, cross-sectoral approach to our research which enables us to explore a range of different perspectives and approaches to change. We regularly publish reports and articles with academics and practitioners that stimulate innovative thinking about new paradigms for development and education based on global justice.  Our publications target development education practitioners and academics, civil society organisations and anyone interested in education and social change.

Are you following this, because I'm not sure I am.  This report says that it ...

"sets out to provide a stimulus for further thought, work and debate in the design of assessment frameworks for an education that supports people in leading fulfilling lives in a changing, globalised world, and in particular within the context of debates around post-2015 universal targets and indicators that are relevant to an education for global citizenship (EfGC)."

It addresses the following questions:

  1. What are the key differences and similarities between diverse forms of ‘adjectival educations’ that contribute to, or generally express themselves as allied to an ‘education for global citizenship’?
  2. What do they contribute to an education for global citizenship?
  3. How, if at all, do they interpret the notion of ‘transformation’?
  4. What do practitioners consider to be the major challenges and opportunities for monitoring (transformative) education for global citizenship?
  5. Which approaches and means of monitoring and assessing transformative education for global citizenship appear to be feasible?

In terms of overlap and difference, the report says this:

"The origins and key characteristics of development education, global education and global learning, human rights education, and education for sustainable development are explored, leading to statements about their commonalities and contributions to an education for global citizenship. These commonalties appear to be particularly in the areas of their shared global orientation, pursuit of personal and/or societal transformation, active and enquiry based teaching and learning methodologies, and overlapping content.  …

Although the different educations may have their different histories and speciality interests there is much that they share – particularly at the broader end of their spectra. Apart from a global perspective, pedagogies and interests in transformation there are also a number of overlapping and closely related content issues."

I waded through this and came to Figure 1.  This shows DEEEP's view of these four overlapping educations, and content of mutual concern ...

Development Education

  • global development
  • inequality
  • views and perspectives of the marginalised
  • economic/political reform
  • education for and in development
  • engagement in economic/political change

Global Education/Global Learning

  • global outlook
  • multiplicity of perspectives
  • futures
  • personal development
  • education for problem solving
  • engagement in shaping the future

Human Rights Education

  • human dignity
  • economic, social, political, and cultural rights
  • rights and responsibilities
  • education for and in rights
  • engagement in actions for justice

Education for Sustainable Development

  • people-nature interdependence
  • future focus
  • common agendas for sustainability
  • education for sustainability
  • personal and societal behaviour regarding production and consumption

... which looks much better as a graphic.

You will have your own views of all this, but I think it lacks conviction.  I'll content myself with three comments:

1. the contrived nature of the "education in / for  ..." constructs: eg, "education for and in rights"  Really?

2. the strange lack of overlap between these four segments. It seems that they have been written in order to maximise difference.

3. the absence of these "common agendas" in three of the segments.

You do have to wonder whose interests all this serves.

Posted in: Comment, New Publications


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