Kunskapens politik En studie av kunskapsdiskurser i svensk och europeisk utbildningspolicy
Sammanfattning: In recent years knowledge has been brought forward as an important political issue both in the EU and in Sweden. It is said to be of the uttermost importance not just for education but for society as a whole. As a result of increased globalization and a European striving for economic growth, knowledge has come to be associated with both individual and national competitiveness, and education and learning in schools and workplaces have become a political priority. In this global competition the EU has become an important policy actor in the educational field trying to create a common European education policy field. Despite this development, only a limited number of reports relating the European arena to Swedish educational reforms have been published. Against this background the aim of this thesis is to deepen the understanding of the knowledge discourses which struggle for legitimacy in Swedish and European education policy and how these discourses relate to each other and change over time. The empirical material consists of a number of fundamental official policy texts produced by the EU and the Swedish state. The study takes its theoretical point of departure in critical discourse analysis using an analytical grid where production, content and communication are seen as three aspects constituting every knowledge discourse. The result shows a process of silent Europeanization in Swedish school reform where European knowledge discourse is being re-contextualised and in many cases re-interpreted without any declaration in terms of explicit references. It also confirms the general trend towards increased focus on learning outcomes and demands for measurability. Furthermore, the result shows how competition rhetoric dominating the EU contributes to an increased sense of crisis in both European and Swedish educational reforms. As a result of this crisis rhetoric the study shows how the proactive reform-perspective is being replaced by a retrospective where solving already existing problems replaces the planning of an uncertain future.
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