“Cut to Grow” and the Spider Web of the New Global TEMPS

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In this chapter, we argue that the rise of the global education industry, with the goal of capturing the academic mission and markets of postsecondary education as a central target, is a core component of the pandemic disaster capitalism engine in higher education. We introduce our notion of a network of privatized interests we call global total education management privatization syndicates (global TEMPS), and identify major threads of its spiderweb of entanglements, including EdTech corporations, global educational consultancies, corporate class think tanks, and philanthro-capitalists across the political spectrum. We discuss troubling spiderwebs of privatization at play during the pandemic to grow the market for for-profit education in the non-profit space at the same time faculty, staff, and programs were eliminated.KeywordsGlobal education industryAcademic missionEdTech corporationsPrivatization in higher educationPandemic privatization

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In the past few decades, many sector-specific case studies have been conducted on the use of consultants in the public sector. However, the overall picture of the qualitative changes facilitated by consultants remains fragmented, and a comprehensive framework on how "consultocracy" affects governance is lacking. This article shows how the increased use of consultants has impacted the operational logics of public administration and governance at large. Drawing from a large multisectoral case study from Finland as well as existing studies, a fourfold typology of how consultocracy shapes public administration is introduced. We argue that increased reliance on consultants contributes to the monopolization and privatization of public knowledge and ensuing dependencies, erosion of tacit knowledge, weakening of accountability, and strengthening of instrumental rationality. This research emphasizes the importance of understanding the links between these developments and the need to implement a comprehensive research agenda on consultocracy.
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The role and contribution of consultants and consultancy in public services has grown rapidly and the power of consultants suggests the emergence of a ‘consultocracy’. We draw on research evidence from the social sciences and critical education policy (CEP) studies to present an examination of the state of the field. We deploy a framework that examines functional, critical and socially critical research and theorising, and we identify the emerging interest in CEP studies. In particular, we identify the potential for consultocracy but acknowledge that there is a need for more detailed research where we argue for more attention to be given to the political sciences in theorising knowledge exchange processes.
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Incl. bibl., abstract This paper explores some particular aspects of the privatisation of public sector education, mapping and analysing the participation of education businesses in a whole range of public sector education services both in the UK and overseas. It addresses some of the types of privatisation(s) which are taking place 'of', 'in' and 'through' education and education policy, 'in' and 'through' the work of education businesses. This entails a traversal of some of the multi-level and multi-layered fields of policy: institutional, national and international. Such an approach is important in demonstrating the increasing diversity and reach of some of the education businesses and their different kinds of involvements with different institutions and sectors of education. It also makes it possible to set local rhetorics, such as 'partnership', within the context of corporate logics of expansion, diversification, integration and profit.
Since the 1970s business groups have staged the control of education, first in the form of partnerships with schools and universities to support science, math, and technology, and more recently in the form of venture philanthropy. This article examines how these business groups, including the “billionaire boys club” and their mega foundations, have become the power brokers of neoliberalism and have gained influential control over educational policies and other cultural spaces in the United States. Using the strategies of institutional capitalism, these venture philanthropies are using public money to lobby legislators and school districts to enact school choice friendly legislation, expand the proliferation of charter schools, and negatively shape social perceptions about public education.
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The management consultancy industry is attracting more and more attention. The critical literature in particular has questioned how a non-codified body of knowledge like ‘consultancy’ could become so apparently influential. The answering emphasis has been on the symbolic nature of consultant strategies and consultancy as a powerful system of persuasion. However, an emerging structural perspective has developed a rather different view, focusing on the limits of the industry discourse, and the constraints of a consultancy role defined largely by external forces. While it is useful to contrast the two perspectives – strategic and structural – they can also be viewed as complementary, and indeed a number of writers have been well aware both of the importance of consultant strategies and the context of consultancy work. In particular, they have explored the interaction between consultant and client, and called attention to factors like the countervailing power of client organizations and the uncertainty of the management task. The paper aims to contribute to this debate and draws on case studies of consultants' role in the management of organizational change – one of clients with considerable market power, and another of interdependency between consultant and client. The point stressed is that the consultancy process contains no ‘necessary’ structures (which may be implied by pairings such as the dependent client and indispensable consultant, or alternatively the resistant client and vulnerable consultant). Instead the consultant–client relationship is best regarded as part of an overarching managerial structure and a contingent exchange that assumes a variety of forms.
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