SPOKE: A comparative study of policy shaping: The cases of Australia and Hungary – practice entrenchment or resistance to ideology?
How far do local and well institutionalised educational discourse-practices withstand or change when they meet with broader ideologies, such as socialism and neoliberalism?
Millei’s spoke compares curricula/policy at three levels (Adamson & Morris, 2007), by focusing on Hungarian (EU context) and Australian (1) early childhood policy intentions (2) policy action/curriculum documents and (3) resourced curricula/guidelines from 1971 until today. This research makes explicit the ways in which actors shaped these documents through the implementation phases (due to contexts and actor’s agency and interests) and altered how concepts are understood and logics are constructed in these documents. The research aims to unearth ways in which readers of policies resisted the official ideology/political rationality of socialism and neoliberalism. The analysis will focus on particular concepts, such as ‘work’, ‘care’, ‘learning’, ‘child-centred’, ‘the child’, ‘community’, and ‘participation’. The analysis compares policy/curricula at three levels (intention, curriculum, resources) within and between the two contexts (Hungary and Australia) and from two methodological angles: 1, phenomenographic analysis that will produce concept maps that show associations and concept environments in different documents / times / cases; 2, examination of “policy rationalities or policy why(s)” (Fimyar, 2010, p. 62) to account for logic/rationality shifts and/or mis/alignments with stated ideology/rationality. The findings will demonstrate the ways in which local actors skilfully resist flows of governing discourses (diffuse/not concentrated/not directional) and will also have implications to contribute to globalization studies and its methodologies.