Localization of Global Discourse and the Breakdown of the Washington Consensus (WC): A Case Study of Korean Higher Education Reform (1993-2012)

  • Author / Creator
    Jeong, Moon Sook
  • In my dissertation paper, I sought the political implications of neo-liberal education reform with the case of recent Korean higher education reforms. I first explored the macro-causal relationship of neo-liberal higher education reform in transnational social relations, and then the political interplay of local state with regard to internalizing global discourse for higher education reform. By doing so, I attempted to break through the taken-for-granted ideological acceptance in recent Korean higher education reforms. I collected and classified text data by selected research methods: document analysis, and content analysis. Korea was chosen as a case study and historical-comparative analysis helped me investigate the political elements of Korean higher education policy reform. For the critical inquiry of qualitative research, I scrutinized policy document texts with a critical discourse analysis. I utilized transnational historical materialism and neo-Gramscian approach to lay out the way of ideological communication between a global hegemonic power and an individual state. Political sociology of education and state theory were delineated to analyze the state behaviour that interacts with both external and internal pressures in setting up neo-liberal policy reform. My research finding is that the basic framework for neo-liberal higher education reform was ideologically shared between international organizations and Korea as a result of the political dynamics of transnational capitalist social relations; however, the global discourse was locally developed based upon local politics of Korea. That is to say, the Korean state– as a political entity of competing social force–determines the level of neo-liberal ideology permeation in reform policies –whether to benefit a global hegemonic ideology or to attenuate it while allowing counter-hegemonic value. As my research examines a policy discourse and its political implications, I wish my research contribute to robust discussions of political impact on educational policy reform by stimulating local policy makers, politicians, educational researchers and stakeholders.

  • Subjects / Keywords
  • Graduation date
  • Type of Item
  • Degree
    Doctor of Philosophy
  • DOI
  • License
    This thesis is made available by the University of Alberta Libraries with permission of the copyright owner solely for non-commercial purposes. This thesis, or any portion thereof, may not otherwise be copied or reproduced without the written consent of the copyright owner, except to the extent permitted by Canadian copyright law.
  • Language
  • Institution
    University of Alberta
  • Degree level
  • Department
  • Specialization
    • Theoretical, Cultural and International Studies in Education
  • Supervisor / co-supervisor and their department(s)
  • Examining committee members and their departments
    • Abdi, Ali (Educational Policy Studies/UofA, Educational Studies/UBC)
    • Samek,Toni (School of Library and Information Studies)
    • Wimmer, Randy (Educational Policy Studies)
    • Schultz, Lynette (Educational Policy Studies)
    • Fisher, Donald (Educational Studies/University British Columbia)