ERIC Number: ED240710
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1982
Reference Count: 0
The Practice of Educational Consultancy in the Context of Policy Formation.
Davies, John L.
The effectiveness, behavior, and role of the consultant as policy advisor is examined in light of three operating assumptions: (1) that educational organiztions are subject to politicization; (2) that the consultant's primary role is to assist in nonroutine, potentially controversial policy decisions; and (3) that the consultant must therefore know the political dynamics of policy-making. Section 1 addresses the political context, including factors contributing to politicization and the nature of problems for which organizations retain consultants. Section 2 concerns problems for the consultant arising from the "anarchy trap," or inherent limitations on manageability in an educational organization due to the diffuse structure of responsibilities and correspondingly weak feedback mechanisms. Accordingly, section 3 provides three choices of approach for the educational consultant: (1) accept the inevitabilities of the "anarchy trap" and restrict his/her role to researcher, catalyst, resource, or counselor; (2) attempt to redefine or clarify the organizational structure; (3) use the organizational ambiguities creatively to "go with the flow." Section 4 provides a four-phase model for policy decisions: "garbage can," negotiations, persuasion/legitimation, and bureaucratization. A flow chart is included. Section 5 summarizes the paper as a whole and assesses the implications of the four-phase mode. References are included. (TE)
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative; Guides - Non-Classroom
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Enderud (H G); Four Phase Model (Policy Formation)