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Title: On being a 'boundary person' : mediating between the local and the global in career guidance policy learning
Authors: Sultana, Ronald G.
Keywords: Globalization
Career development
Vocational guidance
Career development -- Africa, North
Career development -- Middle East
Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development
Issue Date: 2011
Publisher: Routledge
Citation: Sultana, R. G. (2011). On being a ‘boundary person’: mediating between the local and the global in career guidance policy learning. Globalisation, Societies and Education, 9(2), 265-283.
Abstract: This paper engages in a series of critical self-reflections on the author's involvement in the spate of career guidance reviews that have taken place since the year 2000, and which were commissioned by such supra-national entities as the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and various agencies and directorates of the European Commission. The author argues that this series of overlapping comparative studies - involving 55 countries in all - constitutes a powerful discursive field that has helped to frame career guidance in particular ways, and that it has led to opportunities for policy lending and policy borrowing on an unprecedented scale. The author examines the dynamics of such policy learning, identifying some of its potential motives as well as key mechanisms by which transfers take place through 'push' and 'pull' forces. He then goes on to raise a series of questions regarding the viability of deterritorialised policy exchange, noting that social practices such as career guidance are inscribed in a particular complex of values, meanings, and significations that are tightly coupled to the ecological climate in which they thrive. Drawing on his experience in the Middle East and North Africa, the author reflects on career guidance in Arab countries in order to illustrate the way transnational, globalised agendas are reconfigured and reinterpreted at the local level. The paper concludes by considering the ethical and epistemological responsibilities that need to be confronted by 'boundary persons' who mediate between the global and the local.
Description: This paper is a revised version of the 11th Annual Lecture an invited address given at the University of Derby's International Centre for Guidance Studies (iCeGS).
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Scholarly Works - FacEduES

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