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ERIC Number: EJ859297
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Jun
Pages: 33
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 75
ISSN: ISSN-1740-2743
UK Education, Employability, and Everyday Life
Moore, Phoebe
Journal for Critical Education Policy Studies, v7 n1 p242-274 Jun 2009
With pressures from employers, government ministries, and the new paying student/customer, New Labour has begun to restructure higher education and worker training in the United Kingdom to accommodate global markets, in the context of increasingly intimate relations between business and the public sector/education. This essay looks at the process of restructuring of education in the UK as part of a global hegemonic project toward the expansion of neoliberal capitalism in the sense that education is becoming a service that is no longer public, but which is becoming increasingly subordinate to capital, and is thus being put under a process of liberalisation to "supposed" market demands. This is seen in the developing relationship between education, which was historically, a public service, and the private sector; a relationship that imposes a managerial regime onto subjects toward "objectification of subjectivity" in a process of governmentality that points toward what Foucault termed "biopower", or a subordination of bodies through particular means of social regulation under conditions of domination. The idea of "employability" is discussed in the first section of the paper in conjunction with labour market flexibilisation, and the author claims that while it is presented as a one-size-fits-all escape clause from insecurities of the market, it can also be seen as a management technique over workers' everyday lives, and for the management of any potential social unrest resulting from increased instability of the economy and the resulting ambiguities of employment, and the escalation of unemployment. The second section then looks closely into the developing relationship between business and education in the UK, with an examination of the Leitch Report and requisite recommended relations between business and education. The long-awaited and highly influential Report, commissioned by the New Labour government in 2004 and published in December 2006, demonstrates that the United Kingdom is significantly lagging behind other post-industrial nations in skills levels as well as productivity levels, and encourages a demand-led initiative to compensate. (Contains 11 endnotes.)
Institute for Education Policy Studies. University of Northampton, School of Education, Boughton Green Road, Northampton, NN2 7AL, UK. Tel: +44-1273-270943; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom