Use and abuse of Vygotsky ‘s legacy

Vygotsky was a brilliant scientist in the twentieths of the past century ( 1898-1934) in Russia. As a psychologist he mainly devoted himself (...

Education and training, under the dictatorship of the labour market

Ever since the Lisbon Summit of 2000, the dominant conception of European education has been scaled down to the point where it is seen mainly as an instrument of economic policy. From time to time, other voices qualify this main idea: education systems should ensure ‘the personal, social and professional fulfilment of all citizens’ while ‘promoting democratic values, social cohesion, active citizenship and intercultural dialogue.’ (European Council 2012b: 393/5). But for the most part the ‘primary role’ of education and training as the ‘main engine of growth and competitiveness’ is not in question; nor is the ‘essential role that investments in human capital play in terms of an economy recovery based on job creation’ (European Council 2013:1).

The “merchandization” of education: not only GATS

If you allow me, before speaking actually about GATS and privatization of education, I would like to begin with giving some historical and economic background of the problem. In my opinion this is essential to measure the specificity and the dangerousness of the present offensive of markets on education.