Welcome! As you can see from my CV, publications and projects listed on this website, my great passion is researching and writing about the political economy of the education sector – from the global to the regional, local and individual.
My approach to researching education has been formed out of working as an academic in different parts of the world, including Australia, Canada and New Zealand, and since 1999, as Professor of Sociology of Education, Graduate School of Education, University of Bristol, UK.
They have also been stimulated by major developments that began in the 1980s, with education increasingly drawn into servicing the economy. Driven by political projects, these developments have generated important new questions around the creation of different kinds of teachers, learners and citizens. An important trend over this period has been the growth of international agencies and transnational firms in these processes, as well as growing privatization agendas and new geo-strategic alignments, including the thickening of regionalisms. The emerging European education space, for instance, is a fascinating example of how education instruments, like the Bologna Process, are now being taken up in other regions of the world. Similarly, the rise of global agencies, like the World Trade Organization, or the rapid expansion of international student mobility, are reshaping education sectors in profound ways.
From my different publications you are invited to download and read, you’ll see that I draw upon an explicit interdisciplinary approach to my research on education, particularly politics, geography, sociology and anthropology. These different disciplinary ways of looking at the world help us understand education in more complex ways.
As founding Director of the Centre for Globalisation, Education and Societies at the University of Bristol, and founding co-editor (with Roger Dale) of the journal, Globalisation, Societies and Education, I enjoy the challenges involved in developing a critical agenda for the study of globalisation and education. I also work closely with a colleague, Kris Olds, University of Wisconsin, Madison, around many of these issues, including a blog GlobalHigherEd which I hope keeps you briefed on developments in that sector.