Policy analysis has always attended to the role of elite actors, but much less often has the policy activity of ‘street level’ actors been attended to. The ‘implementation’ paradigm has tended to caricature the level of practice in terms of ‘resistors’ or policy failure, and ignored the demanding, creative and complex processes of enacting policy. The move from policy texts to policy in action involves sophisticated processes of interpretation and translation, as well as, at times, opposition, subversion and strategic compliance. The chapters in this book, in different ways, seek to get inside the policy process to understand what policy actors really do – how they manage impossible and multiple policy expectations, how they attempt to do policy with limited resources in conditions often unimagined by those who write policy, and how they translate abstract policy formulations into things that are doable, immediate and relevant. The collection re-writes the policy process and offers new ways of researching policy and policy outcomes. This book was originally published as a special issue of the Journal of Education Policy.
Table of Contents
Introduction: Policy actors/policy subjects 1. Decentralisation, managerialism and accountability: professional loss in an Australian education bureaucracy 2. Changing headship, changing schools: how management discourse gives rise to the performative professionalism in England (1980s–2010s) 3. The gendered, hierarchical construction of teacher identities: exploring the male primary school teacher voice in Hong Kong 4. Consultants, consultancy and consultocracy in education policymaking in England 5. Teacher evaluation reform implementation and labor relations 6. Something old, something new: Educational inclusion and head teachers as policy actors and subjects in the City of Buenos Aires 7. Local quality work in an age of accountability – between autonomy and control
Stephen J. Ball is the Distinguished Service Professor of Sociology of Education at the Institute of Education, University College London, UK. He was elected as a Fellow of the British Academy in 2006, and is also a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences. He is the co-founder and Managing Editor of the Journal of Education Policy. His main areas of interest are in sociologically informed education policy analysis and the relationships between education, education policy, and social class. His books include How Schools do Policy (with Meg Maguire and Annette Braun, 2012), Global Education Inc. (2012), Networks, New Governance and Education (with Carolina Junemann, 2012), and Foucault, Power and Education (2013).