Today we look inside an example of destabilizing knowledge hierarchies inside an American university. With me is Patricia Parker. Patricia helped set up the Graduate Certificate in Participatory Research at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. The graduate certificate reveals the paradoxes of challenging dominant forms of knowledge inside one of the very sites, the university, responsible for reproducing colonial knowledge structures.

Patrcia Parker is chair of the Department of Communication at the University of North Carolina where she is also an associate professor of critical organizational communication studies and director of the Graduate Certificate in Participatory Research. She is currently finishing a book entitled, Living Ella Baker’s Legacy, which documents a multiyear participatory research study with African American girls in under-resourced communities leading social justice activist campaigns.

She will speak at the CIES Symposium later this month.

Citation: Parker, Patricia, interview with Will Brehm, FreshEd, 90, podcast audio, October 9, 2017.

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Today we kick off a four-part series called FreshEd x Symposium. During the lead-up to the 2017 Symposium, four speakers will join FreshEd to whet your appetite for the conversations and debate that will take place in Washington DC. This year’s symposium asks us to consider about how comparative and international education phenomena are studied and wade through the possibility that our field has colonial legacies and tendencies.

To kick things off, Leigh Patel joins me to discuss the ways in which settler colonialism structures American society, including the academy.

Leigh Patel is an interdisciplinary researcher, educator, and writer. She is a Professor at the University of California, Riverside, and is working on her next book, “To study is to struggle: Higher education and settler colonialism.”  She will speak at the CIES Symposium later this month.

Citation: Patel, Leigh, interview with Will Brehm, FreshEd, 89, podcast audio, October 2, 2017.

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Today we look at sexuality education. In some countries, scholars who advocate for a secular worldview have constructed a progressive sexuality education that embraces science at the exclusion of religion.

With me is Mary Lou Rasmussen. In her monograph, Progressive Sexuality Education: The Conceits of Secularism (Routledge, 2015), which was just released in paperback, Mary Lou carefully explores how progressive scholarship and practice might get in the way of meaningful conversations with students, teachers, and peers who think differently about the field of sexuality education.

Mary Lou Rasmussen is a professor at the School of Sociology at The Australian National University. She is co-editor, with Louisa Allen, of the Handbook of Sexuality Education which will be published in October.

Citation: Rasmussen, Mary Lou, interview with Will Brehm, FreshEd, 87, podcast audio, September 18, 2017.

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What are the hard questions in education today?

My guest is Pasi Sahlberg. When he was teaching at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, he edited a book with his students on some of the biggest and hardest questions facing education today.

In our conversation, Pasi speaks about the class, the book, and the importance of writing op-eds. He even offers some advice for US Education Secretary Betsy DeVos.

Many listeners have probably heard of Pasi Sahlberg. Some might even consider him an educational change maker. I ask Pasi if he sees himself as a change maker. Stay tuned to hear his answer!

Pasi Sahlberg is a global educational advisor. His latest co-edited book is entitled Hard Questions on Global Educational Change: Policies, practices, and the future of education which was published by Teachers College Press earlier this year.

Citation: Sahlberg, Pasi, interview with Will Brehm, FreshEd, 82, podcast audio, June 17, 2017.

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Textbooks are perhaps the most recognizable part of school systems. You go to school; you learn from a textbook.

But what’s inside that textbook your reading? Who wrote it? How are controversial issues dealt with? And how have textbooks changed over time and compare across the country?

My guest today, Jim Williams, has edited or co-edited three volumes on textbooks. The many chapters across the volumes looked at textbooks around the world. The first volume looked at textbooks and national-governments. The second volume explored the issue of identity. And the last zoomed in on textbooks in post-conflict settings.

Jim William is the UNESCO Chair in International Education for Development and Professor of International Education & International Affairs at the George Washington University. While on sabbatical in Tokyo, Jim was kind enough to stop by my office where we recorded this interview.

Citation: Williams, Jim, interview with Will Brehm, FreshEd, 81, podcast audio, July 10, 2017.

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Today: global citizenship education.

What is global citizenship education and how is it practiced?

And what is the relationship between national citizenship and global citizenship? Are they compatible?

My guest today is Miri Yemini, an Honorary Visiting Lecturer at the Institute of Education at University College London and a Lecturer in the School of Education at Tel Aviv University


She has recently published a book entitled Internationalization and Global Citizenship in Education.

Citation: Yemini, Miri, interview with Will Brehm, FreshEd, 76, podcast audio, June 5, 2017.

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Today we discuss human rights education with Monisha Bajaj. Monisha, has recently edited a book entitled Human Rights Education: Theory, Research Praxis, which was published by the University of Pennsylvania Press.

In our conversation, we discuss the origins of human rights education, its diverse range of practices, and the ways it has changed overtime.

We also discuss the challenges to human rights education today.

Monisha Bajaj is a Professor of International and Multicultural Education at the University of San Francisco.

Citation: Bajaj, Monisha, interview with Will Brehm, FreshEd, 72, podcast audio, May 8, 2017.


Will Brehm  1:45
Monisha Bajaj, welcome to FreshEd.

Monisha Bajaj  1:57
Thanks so much for having me, Will.

Will Brehm 2:00
So, what is Human Rights Education?

Monisha Bajaj 2:04
Sure. Well, a very basic definition of Human Rights Education is any teaching and learning that happens to impart values, notions, knowledge about human rights among learners. And human rights, most basically, are legal and ethical frameworks for human dignity. And they’ve existed for many, many, many years, in many traditions, in many cultural backgrounds but they were most kind of concretized after the Second World War, as nations came together in the wake of two world wars, looking at the horrors of the Holocaust, and the ravages of what happened there -trying to create a shared moral, ethical, legal framework for individuals, communities, nations living in peace and in dignity.

Will Brehm  2:52
And that framework -that moral, and ethical, legal framework- was through the United Nations?

Monisha Bajaj  2:57
Yeah, so the United Nations came about -the ideas for it had existed through the League of Nations and other proposals that had existed before World War Two. But after World War Two, as nations recovered from many different things on many different continents that were happening, the proposals really moved forward in terms of creating the architecture and the structure for the United Nations. And through that there was a proposal for a Universal Declaration of Human Rights that would codify some basic human standards for living together. The basic principles for which every human would be entitled to.

Will Brehm  3:35
And so human rights as a framework through the United Nations, that was in the 1940s, 1950s, but when did the Human Rights “Education” first emerge?

Monisha Bajaj  3:46
Sure, so actually, Human Rights Education as I mentioned, you know, you have these traditions and cultures where notions of human rights emerged for many years and education about rights and basic values of human dignity have existed in many cultures historically and through the years. But again, at this codification in 1948, through the Universal Declaration of Human Rights -through these 30 articles of this kind of milestone document that’s been translated thousands of times, all around the world- there is Article 26 that fundamentally in Part 1 says that everyone has a right to education. And notably, in Part 2 of that says that education should be directed to the strengthening of respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms. So, there was this awareness and the individuals who debated this document, there were three years of debates and, you know, arguing over language and getting the right terms and the right notions and the phrasing and the types of principles that would be in this document. There was a lot of debates about individuals who were educated that participated in the Holocaust. So, people who were medical doctors who were experimenting in awful ways on individuals: torture, murder, atrocities, and the Nazi indoctrination of youth through education during that time -during the Nazi regime. So, there was this perspective that it’s not just access to education, which is Part 1 of Article 26, but education for what? Education towards peace, tolerance, friendship among nations, the strengthening of fundamental freedoms, respect for human rights. So HRE has actually existed -since in that kind of formal form- since the creation of the document, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Will Brehm  5:28
And who are some of the main proponents of Human Rights Education?

Monisha Bajaj  5:51
Sure. So, in that kind of debating, there were people from different nations. There was a lot of strong support from women from India and from the Dominican Republic, who are delegates in drafting this document for inclusive language around gender. In terms of education, a lot of the Latin American countries pushed the economic, social and cultural rights into the document. Obviously, some of the drafters that we know about were Rene Cassin of France. Different individuals who were leading philosophers and theorists of that time, Charles Malik of Lebanon -other individuals. And so, these debates were happening among this group of individuals. Eleanor Roosevelt chaired the council that drafted the declaration, but she didn’t actually participate in a lot of the drafting of it, which is a bit of a misconception that a lot of individuals have -that she was the main drafter of the declaration. So, these were all kind of leading scholars, philosophers, intellectuals of the time that had come together through this platform of the drafting committee to put in what they saw were the most important rights that each individual should have across societies. What’s interesting about that drafting committee, a lot of individuals bring up the cultural relativist critique. And actually, the strong support for the kind of universalism was from nations of the global South. The few that were involved at that time who had already become free -if we think about the period of 1948 a lot of the countries of Asia, South Asia, at least in Sub-Saharan Africa, were still under colonial rule. And a lot of the colonial powers didn’t want the universal language to be in there. Because that would mean that then the colonies that were under their rule would have to be entitled to these rights that they weren’t at that time giving them. So, there’s this misnomer, I think, right? Or this misconception these days that cultural relativism is something that global South nations are arguing for. But at this time in the 1940s it was actually the reverse: That European powers were arguing for cultural relativist language so that they could maintain you know, their power over the colonies that they had that were very lucrative for them. But a lot of that history is very hidden.

Will Brehm  7:40
So, when did it change to the critique being that cultural relativism was what the global North was doing?

Monisha Bajaj  7:47
Yeah, so that -there’s a really interesting book, it’s a long answer to that question but I would point any listeners towards this book by -I think the first name of the, I can’t remember the first name of the author, but the last name is Burke, and again, the name of the book also escapes me- but it’s a I think it’s something on Decolonizing human rights or something like that. And it talks very extensively -it’s about a 200-page book- about every debate through the process of drafting the declaration. And then how different nations, particularly Saudi Arabia, different representatives from there, switched the debate on cultural relativism to then be a debate about the western imposition of values in order to be able to resist some of the universal framing around the 60s and 70s that was coming out about bringing attention to nations that were not abiding by some of these standards and advancing human rights for all people in those countries.

Will Brehm  8:44
Yeah, I know in the 90s a lot of Asian nations, when they came together during the Vienna Conference, they explicitly stated that human rights should not be used to pressure nations into a universal direction. They kind of made this very interesting balance between, on the one hand, they recognized human rights as universal but at the same time, they didn’t want nations -particularly a Western nations- to pressure Asian nations into following a certain direction of human rights. And it makes me realize that this difference between cultural relativism and the universal notion of human rights I mean, its intention and obviously, as you’re saying changes over time, depending on which nations are advocating for the different sides.

Monisha Bajaj  9:36
Yeah, I mean, I think the history of that debate is a really productive area to look into because it’s so complex and it’s so interesting to look kind of from the 1940s to the present who is on each side of that debate and how that’s shifted over time and even within nations to look at who argues for each of that. I know in my own work my I know we’re talking right now about this new book, but in my previous book on Human Rights Education in India, I looked at kind of the different definitions of Human Rights Education that people have. And it definitely was a lot of individuals who had a bit more privileged status that were arguing for cultural relativism and that these notions can’t be imposed on us. We have Asian values, or we are not like those nations that want us to be like them. Whereas the communities kind of at the very bottom, particularly Dalit rights activists and organizations that I work with -Dalit is considered formerly called “untouchable” groups. A lot of the organizations that were advancing Human Rights Education were Dalit rights organizations. And what they were saying is that, “we do want these universal notions because then what it can allow us to do is advocate for rights that we’ve been denied for thousands and thousands of years”. And the individuals who were arguing for cultural relativism were individuals who would then be upset or disrupted by a change in social relations that had privileged them for a very long time. So, I think it’s also very fruitful to look within nations to see how different structures are arranged and when groups who are some of the most marginalized begin to use human rights framing and language, how then the cultural relativist critique comes from local elites that don’t want any disruption of the privileges and benefits that they’ve had for a very long time.

Will Brehm  11:15
Right. So, it can be particular interests domestically, can latch on to some of these international ideas to push their agenda forward.

Monisha Bajaj  11:23
Yeah. And who is attending the UN meetings where they’re arguing for cultural relativism? For example, in the declaration that you mentioned, in the Vienna conference, the individuals who represent nations are often from elites, right? So, when there’s not the parallel tracks for NGOs or civil society or social movements to be part of those conversations, only one side of the story often gets put forward. So, it would be interesting to see -I think the World Conference against Racism in Durban in 2001 was a very interesting conference where many NGOs, social movements, civil society groups were present alongside the government representatives, and particularly around Dalit rights and the human rights framing, as well as other issues globally. You had a very sort of tense conference where even government actors walked out of the conference because of the strong presence of civil society that were basically telling them when the government of certain countries would say, No, the situation is like this. The civil society actors would say, “No, it’s not. We are living this, we are working this”. And so, you had both voices and it was very difficult for governmental actors to be able to spin a story that wasn’t countered by anyone else because you had a strong presence of civil society there.

Will Brehm  12:39
Yeah. So, let’s switch or let’s change gears to this: How Human Rights Education is actually practiced. Is this something that we see civil society and NGO organizations practicing? Or are governments actually practicing it as well?

Monisha Bajaj  12:56
Yeah. What I think is really interesting about Human Rights Education is you have a sort of “from above” approach and a “from below”. And then a lot of kind of grassroots, transformative education, social justice education, you only have the “from below”, which is kind of empowerment education, trying to reach marginalized groups, bring some sort of Freirean-inspired consciousness raising education in order to empower them. With Human Rights Education, you have that. You have a lot of grassroots movements. This was particularly true in Latin America, during the time of authoritarian rule. A lot of organizations were working with communities to bring in Human Rights Education to build a political base for movements to overthrow authoritarianism. You see that in many different contexts. At the same time, from the 1990s forward, you have a very strong intergovernmental legitimization of human rights discourses and Human Rights Education, particularly through the Vienna Conference on Human Rights in 1993. That was the first big World Conference on human rights after the fall of the Soviet Union where in the declaration that come out of the plan of action that came out of this conference, there were many paragraphs devoted to Human Rights Education being a priority. That awareness about human rights. Through that declaration, there was also the creation of the UN Decade for Human Rights Education, which was 1995 to 2004. So, you have this very strong intergovernmental movement at the same time that you have this very vibrant sort of grassroots movement and it looks different in both those places. So, the way governments talk about Human Rights Education may be putting a paragraph in a textbook, or kind of doing it so that they look good in the international community. Whereas grassroots movements are really trying to bring about individual and social change through working with marginalized groups to advocate for their own rights and demand sort of more dignity and basic freedoms. So, you have this interesting dual movement happening, and maybe there are other levels as well, but it also allows grassroots movements to draw on that global framework to bring legitimacy to what they’re doing. And you see a lot of groups -I see this in my work in India, as well as in other places where I’ve done research- where groups that we’re framing their work on education or consciousness raising around a particular right like the right to land or the right to be free from caste discrimination or gender, that they start using human rights more broadly to frame the issues that they’re working on because it does link to this global framework and this global discourse that then all of a sudden they can make claims on the nation-state because the nation-state has said that they agree to these kinds of global values and norms. So, you see a lot of reframing in the 1990s of individual social movements and NGOs that are working in different areas to a broader human rights lens because funding, legitimacy, networks and different ways of accessing these global goods can also be available by reframing into a human rights lens. And it’s not that what they were working on isn’t human rights. It’s just that all of a sudden there’s this kind of more pan-human rights perspective that individuals can link their own demands and struggles into.

Will Brehm  16:11
So why are nation-states -at this at these intergovernmental agencies and conferences- why are they adopting the language of human rights? Even if it’s only, like you said, a paragraph in a textbook. What is the reason for this global convergence in a sense at that intergovernmental level?

Monisha Bajaj  16:33
There are many scholars who’ve written on this, and I think -it’s not an area that I focus on squarely in my work. But we do have some chapters in the book that do talk about this kind of shift towards the kind of more individual rights in the global kind of economy. You see, this rise of neoliberalism to some extent has opened up the space for this discussion of individual rights. I would say it has a lot to do with kind of how the movement, particularly this kind of Cold War period, where it was very much the First World, the Second World, the Third World. Different groups were focused on different rights. So, the West and the global north was definitely kind of more on political and civil rights. Whereas you see the kind of Soviet nations more focused on economic-social rights, not necessarily cultural rights in that regard. But you see this kind of emergence of political and civil rights as sort of this framework that then becomes to frame a lot of the post-Soviet period. So, it is this way that human rights originally kind of gets in these documents and gets to this kind of international community through the political and civil rights. But as more people enter this space and start using the whole expanse of the human rights documents and frameworks that you see more attention to economic, social, cultural rights coming in as well

Will Brehm  17:53
Since the end of the Cold War -and maybe since the Vienna conference in the early 1990s- has the practice of Human Rights Education changed to today in 2017?

Monisha Bajaj  18:06
Yeah, definitely. So, I would say that -so you have this document in 1948 where Human Rights Education is clearly stated as a fundamental right, you know, a kind of social good that’s in this universal declaration, but not much action on it, or very disparate, different movements towards Human Rights Education. Until really there is this kind of global convening, this focus on Human Rights Education that comes out of the Vienna Conference, and then through the decade -that was like an interagency decade for Human Rights Education across UN agencies- there was then coordination and movement for individuals who are doing different things and may not even know about each other. If you think about the early 1990s, there wasn’t even the internet as easily available that really comes about in the late 90s, early 2000s. So, this decade really allowed people to coordinate and say, “hey, I’m doing this over here. Hey, I’m doing this over here, hey, let’s connect, let’s get together”. And through that coordination of action plans, nation-states then had an incentive because they were being required to submit action plans of what was happening, they had to take stock nationally and say, “Hey, what’s going on in our nation? What can we report that will make us look good about what’s going on in Human Rights Education”? So, it was also a chance for this kind of connection horizontally across the globe, at the civil society level. And I know in the case of India as well, which is where a lot of my research has taken place, government actors got interested in what civil society was doing, because they could use it as a way to show the UN agencies what was happening. Whether or not they were actually involved in it or not, but they could kind of take some credit for actions and show up at events that NGOs were putting on -there was a creation of a National Human Rights Commission at that time in India, for example. So, it was a chance to kind of take stock, connect and also move different initiatives forward because of this kind of international -I wouldn’t say comparison but this kind of focus that then everybody wanted to rally around and show what they were doing.

Will Brehm  20:06
Is Human Rights Education fundamentally different today than it was in the 90s? Or do we see similar trends happening?

Monisha Bajaj  20:14
Yeah, so I would say it is different. So, you see this kind of exponential growth in the term Human Rights Education being used. Initiatives that are specifically on Human Rights Education. So, whereas before the 90s, you probably had very disparate, very kind of Amnesty International was working in that space. Some individuals and organizations were but after the 1990s, you see a lot of individuals who had been doing education -maybe citizenship education or agenda rights education- using Human Rights Education as a frame. Sort of repackaging, maybe expanding the focus of what they were doing to include other rights and then just a monumental shift in pedagogies, practices, publications, textbook reforms, pedagogical reforms. So, the proliferation of initiatives and activities and NGOs that were working in this space after the 1990s till the present day. And what we see now, I think, which is really interesting is just different approaches. So, some of my previous work has also kind of looked at different ideological bents to Human Rights Education. So, I’ve kind of conceptualized some different areas of Human Rights Education for global citizenship, Human Rights Education for coexistence, where different groups whether those ethnic groups, religious groups have been in conflict, bringing initiatives for Human Rights Education that addresses that. And then Human Rights Education that is rooted much more in sort of analysis of asymmetrical power relations that really seeks to bring about transformative learning and action that will address some of these inequities locally and in some instances globally. So, you have a proliferation of initiatives with very different ends. So you might have someone calling what they do Human Rights Education that is very different even in the same nation-state as another group that is using the term Human Rights Education and working with a very marginalized group, and doing something that looks totally different than something that’s happening 50 miles away in a privileged, urban, private school that is sort of doing Skype chats with individuals in other countries and trying to bring about global citizenship. So, you definitely have sort of this proliferation of the term and the perspectives of Human Rights Education, but with very different definitions of what that means as you get down into what they’re doing, what rights they’re focusing on, and what approaches they’re taking to impart learning around human rights.

Will Brehm  22:35
So, I mean, this makes me wonder, what is the value of using the term Human Rights Education if it can mean so many different things?

Monisha Bajaj  22:44
Yeah, I mean, I think the value of using it is very similar to the value of kind of any social justice efforts, right? It allows for people to congregate around this banner of Human Rights Education and address different issues of basic dignity, social justice, critical analysis, but the way that people take up that movement will always be very different. And I think that’s where scholars and practitioners can be in dialogue. I think what’s interesting about Human Rights Education is because it’s a fairly new field, and it’s very grounded in both practice and scholarship. There’s one listserv that is extremely vibrant, that’s coordinated by the US based NGO, Human Rights Education Associates, that started kind of in the late 90s, early 2000s with a few dozen people. When I wrote my book on Human Rights Education in India a few years ago, it was about 8,000 people on the listserv. I’m on this listserv now. I think the latest I looked up its 16,000 people on this listserv from 170 different countries. And it’s an extremely active space for people to share what’s going on, what they’re doing, perspectives, insights, government efforts, feedback on the UN Declaration on Human Rights Education and Training that came out a few years ago. There were several conversations about what should go into that. It’s very rare in other intergovernmental spaces, that you would have such an active civil society participation in the drafting of a declaration or in the discussions about the everyday kind of practice. So, I think being a field that’s relatively new and relatively small, more or less, it allows for this very vibrant and dynamic space where people can contest the definitions or bring in new ideas to it. But it also means that we can’t think it’s all the same. It’s not a monolithic whole. The way individual’s kind of think about Human Rights Education is shaped by where they’re positioned, their social location, what their goals are through the project. And that’s why I think this book is really, you know, it’s meant to be a very introductory textbook on you know, what is Human Rights Education, who’s in the space, what are the different perspectives that exists there and kind of teasing out some of these different conceptual and theoretical perspectives that infuse the way that we think about the field

Will Brehm  25:00
Are there any examples of the outcomes of Human Rights Education? Like, “this is a great outcome of this particular initiative or practice of Human Rights Education”.

Monisha Bajaj  25:14
Yeah, so the area of sort of, I mean, I think research contributes to that. But definitely the area of evaluation is very contested. Because, as with any sort of educational program, it’s difficult to say this is the concrete outcome of this. But there have been studies that look at kind of prejudice reduction, there are three kind of large buckets that Human Rights Education focuses on: So, one is the cognitive. So greater awareness, knowledge about human rights history, standards, norms, maybe they’re domestic rights that everyone has access to. The second bucket would be kind of the affective, attitudinal. So, how does Human Rights Education affect the way that individuals interact with each other? This kind of emotional or attitudinal behavioral area. Is there actually less bullying because Human Rights Education is happening in a school? Is there greater inclusion among different social groups in a school or educative community? And then the third bucket is action-oriented. And that’s one of the trickiest areas to assess because a lot of school children don’t have a lot of time for social action. But Human Rights Education also takes place in a lot of non-formal education learning spaces where there are adult learners, it can happen in community-based spaces, it can happen in after school spaces. So, these are areas that different scholars have looked at. So, what is kind of the content, what are the sort of affective, and what are the action-oriented components that learners -whatever age they are- develop and incorporate into -and even educators- as they learn about Human Rights Education, what are they taking up and doing with this information? I look at that some in my book on Human Rights Education in India. Schooling for Social Change, is the name of that book. Other scholars have also done that, and we have, you know, chapters by about 20 different authors in this new book Human Rights Education: Theory, Research and Praxis, that gives short chapter snippets of what they’re looking at. One of the really interesting chapters that we were excited to include in this book is by Oren Pizmony-Levy and Megan Jensen, where they look at a professional development Human Rights Education program for individuals who work with people who work with refugees who are claiming asylum based on persecution of their gender identity or sexual orientation. So, this was a really important chapter to include because a lot of human rights frameworks, especially the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, doesn’t identify sexual orientation as an area that you have to be free from discrimination of. And as we move from the 1940s forward, more declarations and conventions and international frameworks have incorporated some around sexual orientation, but it is a very sort of contested area when you think about the different nation-states and different laws that criminalize activity. So, this was an important chapter to include and they present some evidence of a training program done by an organization that really does show how individuals who participated, in a quantitative measure, reduce prejudice towards individuals of different sexual orientations through participation in this professional development. So, there are these ways of sort of evaluating. It could be that long term, there are kind of reversals to old ways of thinking, but there are different methodological approaches in the field and some attention towards addressing, “Okay, what are the outcomes and how do we assess these outcomes so that we are moving towards greater respect for human rights through Human Rights Education?”

Will Brehm  28:52
I want to bring the conversation all the way to today when where Marine Le Pen did not win the French presidency, but she came in second and earned more votes than her father did. And in a way she exemplifies this rise of nationalism and ethnocentric thinking -at least in Europe and maybe in the US where Donald Trump won the presidency- and we see this new anti-global talk and discourse and much more nationalistic and I wanted to in your sense: Do you think that this sort of discourse that we see in Europe and in America is going to affect Human Rights Education?

Monisha Bajaj  29:41
So, I see it as not only Europe and America. I mean if we look at the Philippines what’s going on with the leader there. India you know there’s been a tremendous cracking down on descent, revoking of human rights organizations sort of national permission to operate by the Prime Minister there right now. I think it’s a global trend. So, I just want to say that it’s not just the United States and Europe, even though that’s what we get most of the news about. It is really a global trend towards this kind of authoritarianism. In my opinion, it definitely makes Human Rights Education more necessary than ever. So, if you see Human Rights Education as a political and pedagogical project, we need more consciousness raising, critical thinking, critical media literacy, we need it more than ever. And the way I kind of give a quick definition of Human Rights Education sometimes is that space where cosmopolitanism meets Paulo Freire’s ideas. So, I think there’s this beautiful merging of this cosmopolitan thinking, that we are kind of global citizens, that we do have these shared moral, legal, and ethical frameworks which we see in human rights. But that individual consciousness raising has to happen at very local levels with very kind of tailored approaches to the communities that you’re involved in. So how individual communities link to that global, ethical framework and what’s needed to get them to think in perspective, or in relation to that is very different. So that consciousness raising that political, pedagogical, participatory education that happens has to take into account how people are situated in relation to this global. And right now, I think this move towards authoritarianism and this very kind of “rise of nationalism”, is related to a very sophisticated explanation that these kind of charismatic leaders who tend towards authoritarianism are able to give, which is that your economic woes and your hardships are because of “the other”. So particularly with Brexit, there was a very strong propaganda, whatever effort, towards blaming immigrants for the economic hardships when in reality if you take a structural lens on what’s happening is that manufacturing -a lot of the industrial jobs that individuals were in- moved overseas long ago. But the way that the kind of right-wing efforts were able to pin that answer, when people were asking, “Why is my life so hard?”, they were able to pin that answer on individuals who looked different and this kind of rise of multiculturalism through the European Union and migration that had been facilitated to that. When that actually, structurally, was not the reason why people’s lives were harder. It was the collapsing global economy and the rise of neoliberalism and factories moving to where wage labor is the cheapest in places like Bangladesh or Cambodia or Haiti. So, there’s this very sophisticated, I would say political education by the Right to give answers to these kinds of questions that we human rights educators really have to counter with correct and clear analysis that includes critical thinking, critical media literacy, historicizing the situations that individuals find themselves in but I think some of the ways that Human Rights Education operates is so grassroots. It’s very difficult to counter such sophisticated and well-funded campaigns on the other side.

Will Brehm  33:10
Well, Monisha Bajaj, thank you so much for joining FreshEd, it was really great to talk today.

Monisha Bajaj  33:15
Thank you so much for having me.

ويل بريهم: مونيشا باجاج، أهلًا بيكي في برنامج فريش إيد
مونيشا باجاج: شكرًا جدًا لاستضافتكم لي يا ويل
ويل بريهم: إيه هو تعليم حقوق الإنسان؟
مونيشا باجاج: تمام، التعريف الأوّلي لتعليم حقوق الإنسان أن هو أي تعليم وتعلم بيحصل عشان ينقل القيم والمفاهيم والمعرفة الخاصة بحقوق الإنسان بين المتعلمين. وحقوق الإنسان، بشكل أساسي، هي الإطار القانوني والأخلاقي لكرامة الإنسان. وهي موجودة من سنين بعيدة جدًا وفي ثقافات كتيرة، لكنها لم تصبح بالأهمية دي غير بعد الحرب العالمية التانية، لما اجتمعت الدول بعد حربين عالميتين وشافت أهوال الحرب النووية وويلات ما حصل فيها، وحاولوا يعملوا إطار أخلاقي وقانوني مشترك للأفراد والمجتمعات والدول عشان يعيشوا في سلام وكرامة.
ويل بريهم: وهل كان هذا الإطار القانوني والأخلاقي من خلال الأمم المتحدة؟
مونيشا باجاج: نعم، ما حدث هو إن الأمم المتحدة جابت الأفكار إللي كانت موجودة قبل كده من خلال عصبة الأمم، وكمان بعض المقترحات إللي كانت موجودة قبل الحرب العالمية الثانية. لكن بعد الحرب العالمية التانية، ومع تعافي الدول من أمور كثيرة كانت بتحدث في قارات مختلفة، أخذت المقترحات دي خطوة حقيقية للأمام ساهمت في وضع المبادئ التأسيسية والهيكل التنظيمي للأمم المتحدة. ومن خلال هذا تم اقتراح إعلان عالمي لحقوق الإنسان وإللي فيه وضعت معايير إنسانية أساسية للتعايش المشترك. المبادئ الأساسية إللي يحق لكل إنسان إنه يحصل عليها.
ويل بريهم: هذا معناه إن حقوق الإنسان كإطار تم وضعه من خلال الأمم المتحدة في الأربعينات والخمسينات من القرن الماضي، لكن متى ظهر “تعليم” حقوق الإنسان لأول مرة؟
مونيشا باجاج: تمام، في الواقع كما قلت، ظهرت مفاهيم حقوق الإنسان في تقاليد وثقافات مختلفة من سنين، كذلك التعليم عن حقوق الإنسان والقيم الأساسية للكرامة الإنسانية كانت موجودة تاريخيًا في ثقافات كثيرة عبر السنين. لكن مرة تاني، في تشريع سنة 1948، من خلال الإعلان العالمي لحقوق الإنسان- ومن خلال بنوده الثلاثين إللي بيحتويها كوثائق مهمة، وهذا الإعلان تمت ترجمته آلاف المرات في كل أنحاء العالم. ينص الإعلان بشكل أساسي في المادة 26 والجزء الأول منها على أن لكل شخص الحق في التعليم. وخصوصًا في الجزء الثاني من المادة وبينص على أنه ينبغي أن يتم توجيه التعليم إلى تعزيز الاحترام لحقوق الإنسان والحريات الأساسية. لذلك فإن هذا الوعي كان موجودًا، والأفراد إللي ناقشوا هذه الوثيقة على مر 3 سنين كانوا بيتناقشوا بخصوص اللغة المستخدمة، وبيحاولوا الوصول للمصطلحات والمفاهيم والصياغات والمباديء الصحيحة إللي كانت ستحتويها هذه الوثيقة. وكان هناك جدل كبير بخصوص الأفراد المتعلمين وإللي شاركوا في الهولوكوست، أو محرقة اليهود، مثل بعض الأطباء إللي عملوا تجارب طبية مروعة على الأفراد من تعذيب وقتل وأمور فظيعة. وكمان بخصوص التلقين النازي العنصري للشباب من خلال التعليم أثناء حكم النظام النازي. علشان كدا كان هناك هذا المنظور وهو: إن الموضوع مش مجرد الحصول على التعليم، كما هو موجود في الجزء الأول من المادة 26، لكن التعليم بأي غرض؟ التعليم المتجه إلى السلام والتسامح والتآخي بين الدول وتعزيز الحريات الأساسية واحترام حقوق الإنسان. كان تعليم حقوق الإنسان موجود بالفعل من وقت وضع هذه الوثيقة، الإعلان العالمي لحقوق الإنسان.
ويل بريهم: ومن هم أهم المؤيدين لتعليم حقوق الإنسان؟
مونيشا باجاج: تمام، في هذا النوع من النقاش بيشارك ناس من دول مختلفة. فكان هناك مثلًا دعم كبير من النساء من الهند ومن جمهورية الدومنيكان، وإللي كانوا ممثلين في صياغة هذه الوثيقة بهدف الحصول على لغة شاملة تتناسب مع كل جنس. وفيما يتعلق بالتعليم، فكثير من دول أمريكا اللاتينية اهتمت بالحقوق الاقتصادية والاجتماعية والثقافية في الوثيقة. من الواضح أن بعض المشاركين في الصياغة وإللي نعرف عنهم كان منهم رينيه كاسان من فرنسا. كذلك كان هناك فلاسفة وأصحاب نظريات في ذلك الوقت مثل تشارلز مالك من لبنان وغيره. كانت المناقشات بتحصل بين هذه المجموعة من الأفراد. وترأست إليانور روزفلت المجلس إللي صاغ الإعلان، لكنها لم تشارك فعليًا في صياغة كتير منه، وهذا مفهوم خاطئ بعض الشيء موجود عند ناس كثير، لكنها كانت العامل الرئيسي في صياغة الإعلان. كان كل هؤلاء من كبار العلماء والفلاسفة والمفكرين في ذلك الوقت وإللي اجتمعوا مع بعض من خلال منصة لجنة الصياغة لوضع ما رأوا أنه يكون أهم الحقوق إللي لابد يتمتع بها كل فرد في المجتمعات. من الأمور المثيرة للاهتمام بخصوص لجنة الصياغة، أن أفرادًا كثيرين أثاروا فكرة النقد الثقافي النسبي. وفي الواقع، فإن الدعم القوي لهذا النوع من الشمولية كان من دول الجنوب وهي الأقلية إللي كانت مشاركة في ذلك الوقت وإللي بالفعل تحررت من الاستعمار. لو فكرنا في فترة 1948 فإن كثير من دول آسيا، وجنوب آسيا أو على الأقل في أفريقيا جنوب الصحراء الكبرى، كانت لاتزال تحت الحكم الاستعماري. وكثير من القوى الاستعمارية ماكنتش عايزة وجود اللغة العالمية هناك. لأن هذا يعني ان المستعمرات إللي كانت بتخضع لحكمها لابد أن تحصل على هذه الحقوق، لكنها ماكنتش بتاخدها في ذلك الوقت. علشان كدا، اعتقد ان فيه خطأ في التسمية. كمان هناك الاعتقاد الخاطئ في تلك الفترة بأن النسبية الثقافية هي أمر تنادي به دول الجنوب. لكن في الأربعينات كان العكس هو الواقع. كانت القوى الأوروبية نفسها بتدافع عن لغة النسبية الثقافية عشان يستمروا في الاحتفاظ بسلطتهم على المستعمرات إللي كانت مربحة جدًا ليهم. لكن كتير من هذا التاريخ مخفي.
ويل بريهم: متى تغير هذا لنقد فكرة أن النسبية الثقافية هي ما كانت تمارسه دول الشمال؟
مونيشا باجاج: فيه كتاب غاية في الروعة يجاوب على هذا السؤال باستفاضة وأنا أحب أوجه المستمعين إليه. هذا الكتاب كتبه واحد اسمه……..، الحقيقة مش قادر افتكر اسمه الأول لكن اسمه التاني بروك، وللأسف نسيت كمان اسم الكتاب لكني اعتقد إن اسمه “انهاء استعمار حقوق الإنسان” أو شيء شبه هذا. وهذا الكتاب يتكلم بتركيز شديد في حوالي200 صفحة عن كل الجدال إللي حصل أثناء عملية صياغة الإعلان. وبعدين بيتكلم عن كيف حوّلت الدول المختلفة،وخصوصًا السعودية والمندوبين المختلفين النقاش بخصوص النسبية الثقافية ليكون النقاش بعد ذلك عن تطويع الغرب للقيم علشان يقدروا يقاوموا بعض الأطر العالمية في فترة الستينيات والسبعينيات إللي تم وضعها لمحاسبة الدول إللي لم تكن تلتزم بمعايير حقوق الإنسان وتتيحها لكل الناس في تلك الدول.
ويل بريهم: فعلًا أنا عارف أن في التسعينيات كثير من الدول الآسيوية، لما اجتمعوا مع بعض خلال مؤتمر فيينا، أعلنوا صراحةً أنه لا ينبغي استغلال حقوق الإنسان للضغط على الدول لتسير في تيار عالمي معين. وبكده يكونوا عملوا توازن رائع بين اعترافهم بحقوق الإنسان كأمر عالمي من جهة، لكن في نفس الوقت ماكانوش عايزين الدول، وخصوصًا الغربية، تضغط على الدول الآسيوية لاتباع اتجاه معين لحقوق الإنسان. ودا دفعني إن أنا أدرك إن هذا الاختلاف بين النسبية الثقافية والمفهوم العالمي لحقوق الإنسان بيتغير من وقت للتاني بحسب الدول إللي بتدافع عن واحد من الجانبين.
مونيشا باجاج:نعم، أنا أعتقد إن تاريخ هذا الجدال هو مجال مثمر للبحث فيه لأنه معقد للغاية ومن الشيق البحث في الفترة من الأربعينيات حتى الوقت الحالي عن مين من الدول كان بيدعم أي جانب من جوانب الجدال، وكيف تغير هذا مع الوقت حتى داخل نفس هذه الدول لتحديد مين إللي كان بيدعم كل جانب من النقاش. أنا عارف إننا بنتكلم دلوقت عن كتابي الجديد، لكن في كتابي السابق عن تعليم حقوق الإنسان في الهند، أنا بحثت في نوع من المفاهيم المختلفة عند الناس عن تعليم حقوق الإنسان. وكان بالتأكيد معظم الأفراد إللي بيتمتعوا بمكانة مميزة بيدافعوا عن النسبية الثقافية وأنه لا يمكن فرض هذه الأفكار علينا. عندنا قيمنا الأسيوية يعني إحنا مختلفين عن الدول إللي عايزانا نبقى زيها. في حين إن نوعية المجتمعات إللي في القاع وخصوصًا نشطاء منظمة داليت الحقوقية والمنظمات إللي بتتعاون معاها، منظمة داليت تعتبر رسميًا مجموعة “محظورة”. كتير من المنظمات إللي كانت بتقدم تعليم حقوق الإنسان كانت من منظمات بتتعاون مع داليت الحقوقية. وكانوا بيقولوا احنا عايزين القيم العالمية دي لأنها هتخلينا قادرين على الدفاع عن الحقوق إللي اتحرمنا منها لآلاف السنين. والأفراد إللي كانوا بيدافعوا عن النسبية الثقافية شعروا فيما بعد بالإحباط والانزعاج بسبب التغير إللي حصل في العلاقات الاجتماعية إللي ميزتهم لمدة طويلة. علشان كدا أنا بعتقد انه كمان من المفيد النظر داخل الدول لفهم كيفية ترتيب الهياكل التنظيمية المختلفة ومتى بدأت بعض أكثر المجموعات المهمشة في استخدام لغة ومبادئ حقوق الإنسان، وكيف بعد ذلك جاء النقد النسبي الثقافي من النخب المحلية إللي لا تريد أي تعطيل للامتيازات والفوائد إللي تمتعوا بيها لفترة طويلة جدًا.
ويل بريهم: صحيح، فممكن تكون هناك مصالح خاصة على الصعيد المحلي وبتلتصق ببعض الأفكار الدولية علشان تدفع أجندتها لقدام.
مونيشا باجاج: طبعًا، ومين إللي بيحضر اجتماعات الأمم المتحدة إللي بيدافعوا فيها عن النسبية الثقافية؟ على سبيل المثال، في الإعلان إللي ذكرته، في مؤتمر فيينا، غالبًا بيكون الأفراد إللي بيمثلوا الدول من النخبة، صح؟ علشان كدا لما مش بيكون فيه مسارات موازية من المنظمات غير الحكومية، أو المجتمع المدني أو الحركات الاجتماعية علشان تكون جزء من هذه المحادثات، غالبًا بيتم طرح جانب واحد بس من القصة. علشان كدا هيكون من الشيق إننا نشوف هذا. أعتقد أن المؤتمر العالمي لمناهضة العنصرية في ديربان في عام 2001 كان مؤتمر مثير للاهتمام لأن العديد من المنظمات غير الحكومية حضرت فيه، كذلك الحركات الاجتماعية، ومجموعات المجتمع المدني إلى جانب ممثلي الحكومة، حضروا خصوصًا لمناقشة قضية حقوق داليت وتأطير حقوق الإنسان، وغيرها من القضايا الأخرى على الصعيد العالمي. كانت هناك نوعية من المؤتمرات المتوترة، وإللي انسحب منها حتى الممثلين الحكوميين بسبب الوجود القوي للمجتمع المدني، لما كانت حكومات بعض الدول بتقول “لا، الوضع عندنا كذا”، فكان ممثلو المجتمع المدني يردوا ويقولوا “لا، الوضع مش كدا، احنا عايشين بهذه الطريقة، وبنشتغل بالطريقة الفلانية. وهكذا، كان عندنا كلا الصوتين وكان من الصعب جدًا بالنسبة للممثلين الحكوميين انهم يختلقوا قصة لا يتم التصدي ليها لأن كان هناك حضور قوي للمجتمع المدني.
ويل بريهم: تمام، خلينا ننقل أو نغير الحديث لنقطة تانية: كيف تتم ممارسة تعليم حقوق الإنسان فعليًا؟ هل نرى إن المجتمع المدني والمنظمات غير الحكومية بتمارسه؟ أو هل الحكومات كمان بتمارسه فعليًا؟
مونيشا باجاج: تمام، الأمر إللي أنا بعتقد أنه شيق جدًا بخصوص تعليم حقوق الإنسان أن عندنا مدخلين “من أعلى” و “من أسفل”. في مدخل “من أعلى” هناك أنواع كتيرة من التعليم الشعبي، والتعليم التحولي، والتعليم عن العدالة الاجتماعية. أما مدخل “من أسفل”، فيوجد فيه فقط التعليم التمكيني، ودا بيحاول يوصل للفئات المهمشة، وبيستحضر نوع من التعليم المستوحى من الأفكار المنسوبة لفرير وهو فيلسوف وتربوي برازيلي ركز على رفع مستوى التعليم والوعي للناس بهدف تمكينهم من حقوقهم. مع تعليم حقوق الإنسان تجد الآتي. هناك حركات شعبية كثيرة، ودا صحيح على وجه الخصوص في أمريكا اللاتينية خلال فترة الحكم الاستبدادي. كتير من المنظمات كانت بتشتغل مع المجتمعات لنشر تعليم حقوق الإنسان علشان تبني قاعدة سياسية للحركات بهدف الإطاحة بالاستبداد. وتقدر تشوف دا في سياقات مختلفة عديدة. في نفس الوقت، من التسعينيات وما بعدها، هناك شرعية حكومية دولية قوية جدًا لخطابات حقوق الإنسان ولتعليم حقوق الإنسان، وخصوصًا من خلال اعلان مؤتمر فيينا عن حقوق الإنسان في سنة 1993. ودا كان أول مؤتمر عالمي ضخم عن حقوق الإنسان بعد سقوط الإتحاد السوفيتي وفيه تم الإعلان عن خطة الأعمال إللي نتجت عن المؤتمر، وكانت هناك فقرات كثيرة مخصصة لتعليم حقوق الإنسان كأولوية تساهم في زيادة الوعي عن حقوق الإنسان. من خلال هذا الإعلان، قامت الأمم المتحدة بتخصيص فترة عشر سنين لتعليم حقوق الإنسان، من 1995 لـ 2004. عشان كدا عندنا الحركة الحكومية الدولية القوية جدًا، في نفس الوقت إللي فيه الحركة الشعبية النابضة بالحياة دي؛ ويبدو الأمر مختلف بين هذين الاتجاهين. فالطريقة إللي بتتكلم بيها الحكومات عن تعليم حقوق الإنسان ربما تكون بوضع فقرة في كتاب مدرسي، أو أي حاجة زي كدا علشان يظهروا بصورة جيدة قدام المجتمع الدولي. في حين إن الحركات الشعبية هي فعلًا بتحاول تعمل تغيير على مستوى الفرد والمجتمع من خلال العمل مع الفئات المهمشة للدفاع عن حقوقها والمطالبة بنوع من الكرامة والحريات الأساسية. علشان كدا عندنا الحركة المزدوجة والمثيرة للاهتمام دي، وربما هناك كمان مستويات تانيةـ لكن دا برضه بيسمح للحركات الشعبية انها تستفيد من الإطار العالمي علشان تضفي شرعية على إللي بتعمله. واحنا بنشوف فئات كتيرة- أنا مثلًا بشوف دا في شغلي في الهند وكمان في أماكن تانية عملت فيها أبحاث. هناك مجموعات بتقوم بوضع إطار لشغلها على التعليم ورفع الوعي حول حق معين زي حق الأرض، أو حق الحرية من التمييز الطبقي أو الجنسي، وإنهم يبدأوا يستخدموا حقوق الإنسان على نطاق أوسع لوضع إطار للقضايا إللي بيشتغلوا عليها لأنها بترتبط بالإطار العالمي دا، والخطاب العالمي دا، وبكدا يقدروا يقدموا مطالبات للدولة القومية لأنها قالت إنها موافقة على هذه الأنواع من القيم والقواعد العالمية. علشان كدا انت بتشوف إعادة صياغة كتير في التسعينات لحركات اجتماعية فردية ومنظمات غير حكومية بتشتغل في مجالات مختلفة لتوسيع نطاق حقوق الإنسان لأن الدعم المالي، والقواعد، والشبكات والطرق المختلفة للوصول للسلع العالمية بتكون متاحة من خلال إعادة صياغة نطاق حقوق الإنسان. وفجأة أصبح عندنا هذا النوع من منظور حقوق الإنسان إللي يقدر الأفراد يربطوا مطالبهم وصراعاتهم بيه.
ويل بريهم: طيب ليه، الوكالات والمؤتمرات غير الحكومية دي، ليه بيتبنوا لغة حقوق الإنسان؟ حتى لو، زي ما حضرتك قلت، انها مجرد فقرة في كتاب مدرسي. إيه سبب هذا التقارب العالمي على المستوى الحكومي الدولي؟
مونيشا باجاج: فيه علماء كتير كتبوا عن هذا، وأنا أعتقد، إنه مش المجال إللي أنا بركز عليه بشكل مباشر. لكن عندنا بعض الفصول في الكتاب بتتكلم عن هذا النوع من التحول تجاه شكل من الحقوق الفردية في الاقتصاد العالمي. فتح صعود الليبرالية الحديثة إلى حد ما المجال لهذا النوع من المناقشات عن الحقوق الفردية. عايز أقول إن فيه حاجات كتير عايزة تتعمل بخصوص الكيفية إللي لابد تتعامل بيها هذه الحركة مع الفئات المختلفة، وخصوصًا في فترة الحرب الباردة، إللي بينقسم العالم فيها للعالم الأول والعالم الثاني والعالم الثالث. فئات مختلفة ارتكزت على حقوق مختلفة. فالغرب ودول الشمال بالتأكيد أكثر تركيزًا على الحقوق السياسية والمدنية. في حين ركزت الدول السوفيتية على الحقوق الاقتصادية والاجتماعية، ومش ضروري الحقوق الثقافية. لكنك بتشوف هذا النوع من ظهور الحقوق السياسية والمدنية كنوع من الإطار إللي أصبح بعد كدا إطار لمعظم فترة ما بعد الإتحاد السوفيتي. هذه الطريقة إللي بتدخل بيها حقوق الإنسان في الأساس لهذه الوثائق وبتصل للمجتمع الدولي من خلال الحقوق السياسية والمدنية. لكن كل ما دخل ناس كتير لهذه المنطقة وابتدوا يستخدموا وثائق وأطر حقوق الإنسان بشكل كامل، كل ما هتشوف اهتمام أكبر بالحقوق الاقتصادية والاجتماعية والثقافية.
ويل بريهم: من نهاية الحرب الباردة وربما من وقت مؤتمر فيينا في أوائل التسعينات حتى الآن، هل حصل تغير في ممارسات تعليم حقوق الإنسان؟
مونيشا باجاج: طبعًا بالتأكيد، عشان كدا أحب أقول أن عندنا هذه الوثيقة من سنة 1948 وفيها تم الإعلان بوضوح على إن تعليم حقوق الإنسان هو حق أساسي، وكون إن هذا ورد في الإعلان العالمي هو أمر جيد اجتماعيًا، لكن لم يتم اتخاذ إجراءات أو خطوات كثيرة تجاه تعليم حقوق الإنسان. لما حصل الاجتماع العالمي تم التركيز على تعليم حقوق الإنسان إللي نتجت عن مؤتمر فيينا، وبعدها خلال العشر سنين إللي كانت عبارة عن عشر سنين مشتركة بين وكالات الأمم المتحدة بخصوص تعليم حقوق الإنسان، كان فيه تناسق وحركة لأفراد بيعملوا حاجات مختلفة وربما كانوا حتى لا يعرفون بعضهم البعض.  لو فكرت في بداية التسعينيات، ماكانش فيه حتى إنترنت متاح بسهولة زي أواخر التسعينات وأوائل الألفية التانية. عشان كدا العشر سنين دول بالفعل سمحت للناس بالتنسيق مع بعض وأنهم يقولوا لبعض “انتبه، أنا بعمل دا هنا، وأنا بعمل دا هناك، خلينا نكون على اتصال، خلينا نشتغل مع بعض.” ومن خلال التنسيق لخطط العمل، كان للأمم المتحدة بعد ذلك الحافز لأنهم مطالبون بوضع خطط عمل للي كان بيحصل. وكان عليهم إجراء تقييم على المستوى الوطني ويسألوا، “انتبه، إيه إللي بيحصل في بلدنا؟ وإيه إللي نقدر نعلنه يساعد في إننا نظهر بصورة كويسة بخصوص إللي حاصل في موضوع تعليم حقوق الإنسان؟” دي كانت كمان فرصة لهذا النوع من التواصل الأفقي العالمي على المستوى الاجتماعي المدني. وأنا عارف أن في حالة الهند كذلك، تم فيها اجراء أبحاث كتيرة، اهتمت جهات حكومية بما يعمله المجتمع المدني، لأنهم يقدروا يستخدموه كوسيلة عشان يظهروا لوكالات الأمم المتحدة إللي بيحصل. سواء كانوا فعلًا مهتمين ومنخرطين في الموضوع أو لا، إلا إنه يُحسب ليهم إنهم أخدوا إجراءات وأظهروا في الأحداث إن المنظمات غير الحكومية كانت بتدّعي حاجات مبالغ فيها. كان فيه ظهور للجنة قومية لحقوق الإنسان في ذلك الوقت في الهند على سبيل المثال. فدي كانت فرصة لإجراء تقييم وللتواصل وكمان نقل مبادرات مختلفة لقدام بفضل هذا النوع من التركيز الدولي، مش هقول المقارنة، لكن الكل أراد إنهم يجتمعوا ويظهروا إللي كانوا بيعملوه.
ويل بريهيم: هل تعليم حقوق الإنسان مختلف اليوم اختلافًا جوهريًا عما كان عليه في التسعينيات؟ واللا احنا بنشوف اتجاهات مماثلة بتحصل؟
مونيشا بجاج: أنا عايز أقول إنه مختلف. فاحنا بنشوف هذا النوع من التطور الهائل في مصطلح تعليم حقوق الإنسان وهو مُستخدَم. هناك مبادرات بشكل خاص في تعليم حقوق الإنسان. ربما قبل فترة التسعينيات كان فيه تباين شديد، وده نوع من الأشياء اللي جعلت منظمة العفو الدولية تشتغل في هذا المجال. كان فيه بعض الأفراد والمنظمات، لكن بعد فترة التسعينيات، بنشوف أفراد كتير من إللي بيقدموا ربما تعليم عن المواطنة أو عندهم أجندة عن التعليم عن الحقوق بيستخدموا تعليم حقوق الإنسان كإطار ليهم. نوع من إعادة التقديم ربما يتوسع في نطاق التركيز على إللي بيعملوه علشان يشمل حقوق تانية وبعدها يحصل تحول كبير في علم أصول التربية، والممارسات، والمنشورات، وإصلاح الكتب المدرسية، والإصلاحات التربوية. هذا موجود في كثير من المبادرات والأنشطة والمنظمات غير الحكومية إللي كانت تعمل في هذا المجال بعد التسعينيات وحتى اليوم. وده إللي احنا بنشوفه هذه الأيام، وإللي أعتقد إنه فعلًا شيق، وأعتقد إنه يقدم مداخل مختلفة. بعض أعمالي السابقة تبدو مختلفة بعض الشيء في التوجهات الأيديولوجية المختلفة لتعليم حقوق الإنسان. علشان كدا أنا عملت صياغة لبعض المجالات المختلفة مثل: تعليم حقوق الإنسان من أجل مواطنة عالمية، وتعليم حقوق الإنسان من أجل التعايش المشترك، في الأماكن إللي فيها فئات مختلفة سواء كانت فئات دينية أو عرقية بتعيش في صراع، وعملت مبادرات لتعليم حقوق الإنسان إللي بتخاطب هذا الأمر. كذلك تعليم حقوق الإنسان إللي بيتأصل أكتر في تحليل علاقات القوة غير المتكافئة وإللي بيحاول تحقيق تعلم تحولي بيعالج بعض أوجه عدم المساواة، محليًا وفي بعض الحالات عالميًا. إذًا هناك تزايد للمبادرات بأهداف مختلفة تمامًا. فربما نجد شخص يسمي ما يعمله تعليم حقوق الإنسان لكنه هيكون مختلف جدًا حتى في داخل الدولة الواحدة عن شخص آخر يستخدم مصطلح تعليم حقوق الإنسان ويشتغل مع فئة مهمشة جدًا تعمل أشياء مختلفة تمامًا عن أشياء بتحصل على بعد 50 ميل في مدرسة خاصة في مدينة قريبة تتمتع بامتيازات وبتعمل محادثات عبر الإسكايب مع أفراد من دول تانية وبيحاولوا يحصلوا على مواطنة عالمية. علشان كدا انت بالتأكيد عندك نوع من الانتشار لمصطلح تعليم حقوق الإنسان ووجهات النظر عنه، لكن مع تعريفات مختلفة لمعناه بحسب إللي بيعملوه والحقوق إللي بيركزوا عليها والأساليب إللي بيتخذوها لتوصيل المعرفة عن حقوق الإنسان.
ويل بريهيم: دا بيخليني أتساءل، إيه قيمة استخدام مصطلح تعليم حقوق الإنسان لو كان ممكن يعني أمور مختلفة كتيرة؟
مونيشا باجاج: أنا أعتقد أن القيمة من استخدامه متشابهة جدًا لقيمة أي نوع من جهود العدالة الاجتماعية، صحيح؟ لأنها بتسمح للناس انهم يتجمعوا حول شعار تعليم حقوق الإنسان ومعالجة القضايا الأساسية المختلفة مثل الكرامة، والعدالة الاجتماعية، والتحليل النقدي. لكن الطريقة إللي بيستخدمها الناس لعمل هذا دائمًا هتكون مختلفة جدًا. وأنا أعتقد إن هذه هي المساحة إللي فيها يقدر العلماء والممارسون أنهم يكونوا في حوار. أنا أعتقد أن الأمر الشيق بخصوص تعليم حقوق الإنسان هو أنه مجال جديد إلى حد ما ويرتكز إلى حد كبير على كل من النظرية والتطبيق. هناك مثلًا قائمة للتواصل الالكتروني حيوية للغاية، بيتم تنسيقها بواسطة منظمة غير حكومية مقرها الولايات المتحدة، وهي منظمة لتعليم حقوق الإنسان، وإللي بدأت تقريبًا في أواخر التسعينيات، وأوائل العقد الأول من القرن العشرين بعشرات قليلة من الناس. لما كتبت كتابي عن تعليم حقوق الإنسان في الهند من سنوات قليلة، كان فيه حوالي 8000 شخص في القائمة. أنا واحد من ضمن الموجودين على هذه القائمة الآن. أعتقد أن آخر عدد على القائمة وصل لـ 16000 شخص من 170 دولة مختلفة. وهذه مساحة نشطة جدًا للناس علشان يشاركوا بإللي بيحصل وبإللي بيعملوه وبوجهات نظرهم وبرؤاهم وبمجهودات الحكومة وردود الأفعال على إعلان الأمم المتحدة بخصوص تعليم وتدريب حقوق الإنسان إللي صدر من سنين قليلة. كان فيه أيضًا محادثات متنوعة بخصوص إيه إللي لابد للبدء في العمل بيه. من النادر جدًا في المجالات الحكومية الدولية الأخرى أن تكون عندك مشاركة نشطة مماثلة من المجتمع المدني في صياغة إعلان أو في المناقشات حول نوع الممارسة اليومية. علشان كدا أنا أعتقد أن كونه مجال جديد نسبيًا وصغير نسبيًا، أكثر أو أقل، فهو يتيح هذه المساحة الحيوية والديناميكية جدًا وإللي فيها الناس يقدروا يعارضوا المفاهيم أو يقدموا أفكار جديدة. ولكن هذا معناه أننا ما نقدرش نعتقد أن كل تعليم لحقوق الإنسان هيكون نفس الشيء. فهو مش مجرد وحدات جامدة متراصة. فطريقة تفكير الفرد في تعليم حقوق الإنسان بتتشكل من خلال مكانته، وموقعه الاجتماعي، وما هي أهدافه من خلال المشروع. لهذا السبب أعتقد أن هذا الكتاب فعلًا من المفترض أنه يكون كتاب تمهيدي وإللي فيه بتعرف، إيه هو تعليم حقوق الإنسان، ومين رواده، وإيه هي وجهات النظر المختلفة الموجودة بخصوصه، وكيفية استخراج بعض وجهات النظر الخاصة بالمفاهيم والنظريات المختلفة إللي بتغرس الطريقة إللي بنفكر بيها في هذا المجال.
ويل بريهيم: هل هناك أي أمثلة لنتائج تعليم حقوق الإنسان؟ مثلًا لو هتقول “إن هذا الأمر هو نتيجة عظيمة للمبادرة، أو تلك الممارسة لتعليم حقوق الإنسان.”
مونيشا باجاج: نعم، أنا أعتقد إن البحث العلمي بيساهم في هذا. لكن بالتأكيد مجال التقييم أمر فيه صراع. لأن، كما هو الحال في أي برنامح تعليمي، من الصعب أنك تقول كذا هو الناتج الملموس لكذا. لكن كان فيه دراسات بتبحث في تقليل التمييز. فيه 3 أنواع من الجوانب بيركز عليهم تعليم حقوق الإنسان: الأول هو الجانب المعرفي، إللي فيه بيحصل مزيد من الوعي والمعرفة بتاريخ حقوق الإنسان والمعايير والقواعد. ربما تكون هذه الحقوق حقوق محلية يمكن لكل فرد أن يصل إليها. الجانب الثاني هو الجانب السلوكي الوجداني. إللي بيبحث في، كيف يؤثر تعليم حقوق الإنسان على الطريقة إللي بيتفاعل بها الأفراد مع بعضهم البعض؟ هذا النوع من الجوانب السلوكية العاطفية. فهل فيه فعلًا انخفاض في نسبة البلطجة بفضل وجود تعليم حقوق الإنسان في مدرسة ما؟ هل فيه اندماج أكبر بين الفئات الاجتماعية المختلفة في المدرسة أو المجتمع التعليمي؟ الجانب الثالث هو الموجه نحو العمل. وهذا واحد من أصعب المجالات إللي يجب تقييمها لأن الكتير من أطفال المدارس معندهمش وقت كبير للعمل الاجتماعي. لكن تعليم حقوق الإنسان بيتم كذلك في كتير من أماكن التعليم غير النظامي إللي فيه متعلمين بالغين، فممكن يحصل في الأماكن الأهلية، أو يحصل في أماكن تفتح أبوابها بعد انتهاء وقت المدرسة. هذه المجالات بحث فيها علماء مختلفون. علشان كدا، ما هو المحتوى، وما هو الجانب السلوكي الوجداني، وإيه هي عناصر الجانب الموجه نحو العمل إللي المتعلمين، أيًا كان عمرهم، وحتى المعلمين بيتعلموها ويدمجوها أثناء تعلمهم عن تعليم حقوق الإنسان، إيه إللي بيعملوه أو بينفذوه بهذه المعلومات؟ أنا بناقش دا في كتابي عن تعليم حقوق الإنسان في الهند. التعليم من أجل التغيير الاجتماعي هو اسم هذا الكتاب. فيه علماء تانيين عملوا نفس الشيء، وأحنا عندنا فصول لحوالي 20 مؤلف مختلفين في هذا الكتاب الجديد “تعليم حقوق الإنسان: النظرية والبحث والتطبيق العملي” وإللي فيه فصول قصيره مقتطفة من المساهمين في الكتاب. واحد من الفصول الشيقة فعلًا وإللي كنا متحمسين أنه يكون في الكتاب كتبه أورين بيزموني ليفي، وميجن جنسن وإللي فيه بيبحثوا في برنامج تعليمي عن التطوير في مجال حقوق الإنسان للأفراد إللي بيشتغلوا مع أشخاص بيعملوا مع اللاجئين إللي بيطلبوا اللجوء بناء على اضطهاد هويتهم الجنسية أو ميولهم الجنسية. علشان كدا، كان هذا الفصل مهم بالفعل ويجب تضمينه في الكتاب لأن كتير من أطر حقوق الإنسان، وخاصة الإعلان العالمي لحقوق الإنسان، لا تحدد الميول الجنسية كمجال لابد أن يكون خالي من التمييز. واحنا بنتحرك من فترة التسعينات وما بعدها، تم إدماج اعلانات واتفاقيات وأطر دولية بعضها بخصوص الميول الجنسية، لكنها من الجوانب المتنازع عليها لما تفكر في الدول والقوانين المختلفة إللي بتجرم هذا الأمر. هذا الفصل هو فصل مهم موجود في الكتاب وهما بيقدموا فيه بعض الدلائل على برنامج تدريبي مهني قامت به منظمة بتوضح كيف أن الأفراد إللي شاركوا، في مقياس كمي، بيقللوا من تحيزهم ضد الأفراد إللي عندهم ميول جنسية مختلفة من خلال المشاركة في هذا التطور المهني. هناك وسائل للتقييم ممكن تتم على المدى البعيد. فيه نوع من الإنقلاب على طرق التفكير القديمة، لكن فيه مداخل منهجية مختلفة في المجال وبعض الاهتمام بالمعالجة، “طيب، ما هي النتائج وكيف نقيمها علشان نقدر نتحرك ناحية احترام أكبر لحقوق الإنسان من خلال تعليم حقوق الإنسان؟”
ويل بريهيم: ممكن ننقل الحوار لفكرة ثانية ونتكلم عن هذه الأيام لما ماري لوبان ما فازتش بمنصب الرئاسة الفرنسية، لكنها احتلت المرتبة التانية وحصلت على نسبة أصوات أعلى من والدها. وهي بتجسد بكيفية ما صعود القومية والتفكير العرقي، على الأقل في أوروبا وربما في الولايات المتحدة أيضًا، لما فاز دونالد ترامب بمنصب الرئاسة، واحنا بنشوف الحوار أو الخطاب الجديد المناهض للعالمية لكنه أكثر قومية، فأنا عايز أسألك عن إحساسك: هل تعتقدين أن هذا النوع من الخطاب إللي احنا شايفينه في أوروبا وفي أمريكا هيأثر في تعليم حقوق الإنسان؟
مونيشا باجاج: أعتقد أن مش بس أوروبا وأمريكا. يعني لو ألقينا الضوء على الفلبين وإللي بيحصل مع القائد هناك. وفي الهند إنت عارف أنه كان فيه اجراءات صارمة ضد التوريث، لكنهم ألغوا منظمات حقوق الإنسان ولابد وجود تصريح قومي من رئيس الوزراء هناك. فأنا أعتقد إنه إتجاه عالمي. علشان كدا أنا عايز أقول إن مش بس الولايات المتحدة وأوروبا، على الرغم من أن هذا هو ما تعلنه الصحف لينا. هو فعلًا إتجاه عالمي تجاه هذا النوع من الاستبداد. في رأيي، إن هذا بالتأكيد يجعل تعليم حقوق الإنسان أكثر ضرورة من قبل. فإذا رأيت تعليم حقوق الإنسان كمشروع سياسي أو تربوي، فنحن في حاجة لزيادة الوعي والتفكير النقدي ومحو الأمية الإعلامية، محتاجين لهذا أكتر من أي وقت مضى. تعريفي المختصر أو السريع لتعليم حقوق الإنسان هو “تلك المساحة حيث تلتقي العالمية بأفكار باولو فرير”. فأنا أعتقد إن فيه دمج رائع لهذا التفكير العالمي، وإننا مواطنون عالميون بنتشارك في أطر أخلاقية وقانونية ندركها في حقوق الإنسان. لكن لابد يحصل رفع لهذا الوعي الفردي على المستوى المحلي مع وجود نوع من الأساليب المصممة لتناسب المجتمعات إللي إنت بتشارك فيها. فكيف تتواصل المجتمعات الفردية بهذا الإطار الإخلاقي العالمي وما هو المطلوب لجعلهم يفكروا بمنظور صحيح أو له علاقة بهذا؛ هو أمر مختلف جدًا. علشان كدا رفع الوعي السياسي أو التربوي والتشاركي إللي بيحصل لابد أنه يأخد في الاعتبار موقع الناس بالنسبة للعالمية. في هذا الوقت، أنا أعتقد إن التحرك ناحية الاستبداد، وكذلك “صعود القومية” له علاقة بتفسير معقد جدًا بأن هذا النوع من القادة الكارزماتيين وإللي بيميلوا للاستبداد قادرين على إظهار أن مشاكلك الاقتصادية والصعوبات التي تواجهك هي بسبب “الأخرين”. علشان كدا، خصوصًا مع خروج بريطانيا من الإتحاد الأوروبي، كان فيه بروباجاندا قوية جدًا تجاه إلقاء اللوم على المهاجرين كسبب للصعوبات الاقتصادية، بينما في الواقع، إذا نظرنا بعمق على إللي حصل، سنجد أن السبب هو الصناعة. فكثير من الوظائف الصناعية إللي كانوا بيعلموا فيها الأفراد- انتقلت للخارج من فترة طويلة. لكن الطريقة إللي كان يتم الإجابة بيها على تساؤل الناس “ليه حياتي صعبة جدًا؟” كانوا قادرين على تعليق السبب على الأفراد إللي يبدو إنهم مختلفون، وعلى التعددية الثقافية من خلال الإتحاد الأوروبي والهجرة إللي سهلت لهذا. إلا أن هذا فعليًا لم يكن السبب الحقيقي لمشكلة لماذا أصبحت حياة الناس أصعب. عندك مثلًا انهيار الاقتصاد العالمي وصعود الليبرالية الجديدة وانتقال المصانع للأماكن ذات الأجور المنخفضة زيبنجلاديش أو كمبوديا أو هايتي. علشان كدا فهذا التفسير معقد جدًا، وأنا عايز أقول إن التعليم السياسي إللي بتقدمه أحزاب اليمين كإجابات على هذه النوعية من الأسئلة لابد علينا كمعلمين لحقوق الإنسان أننا نواجهه ونقدم له تحليل واضح وصحيح يشمل التفكير النقدي، ومحو الأمية الإعلامية، وتأريخ للمواقف إللي الأفراد يجدوا أنفسهم فيها، لكن أعتقد أن بعض الطرق إللي بيعمل من خلالها تعليم حقوق الإنسان هي القواعد الشعبية. من ناحية تانية من الصعب جدًا مواجهة  حملات معقدة وممولة زي دي.
ويل بريهيم: أوك مونيشا باجاج، أنا بشكر حضرتك جدًا لوجودك معنا في برنامج فريش إيد. أنا استمتعت بالحوار معاكي النهارده.
مونيشا باجاج:شكرًا لاستضافتكم ليَّ.

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What’s the relationship between test scores and gross domestic product? Do higher test scores lead to higher GDP?

This question may seem a bit strange because most people think about the value of education on a much smaller, less abstract scale, usually in terms of “my children” or “my education.” Will my children earn a higher wage in the future if they do well on school examinations today? If I major in engineering, will I earn a higher income than if I majored in English?

The answer to these question is usually assumed to be a resounding “yes.” Doing better on examinations or studying subjects that are perceived to be more valuable will result in higher wages at the individual level and higher GDP at the national level. Such a belief shapes educational policies and influences educational decision making by families. It has even resulted in a global private tutoring industry that prepares students for tests in hopes of getting ahead.

But what if this assumption isn’t true? What if the relationship between test scores and GDP isn’t so straightforward?

With me today are Hikaru Komatsu and Jeremy Rappleye. Recently they have been publishing numerous articles (see here, here, and here) challenging the statistical research supporting the conclusion that higher tests scores cause higher GDPs. Instead, they find that test scores don’t determine GDP by all that much.

Hikaru Komatsu and Jeremy Rappleye are based at the Graduate School of Education at Kyoto University. Their most recent op-ed appeared in the Washington Post.

Citation: Komatsu, Hikaro and Rappleye, Jeremy, interview with Will Brehm, FreshEd, 71, podcast audio. May 1, 2017.

Will Brehm:  2:12
Hikaru Komatsu and Jeremy Rappleye, welcome to FreshEd.

Hikaru Komatsu:  2:16
Thanks for having us.

Jeremy Rappleye:  2:18
Thank you, Will. Before we begin, let me just say how much I really enjoy your show. And I learned so much from it. And I really applaud you for creating this space and doing such high quality shows week in and week out. So thank you very much for having us.

Will Brehm:  2:30
Thanks for the kind words. You, two have been doing quite a lot of work lately on really challenging some commonplace assumptions between test scores and GDP – gross domestic product. What is the normal relationship many researchers have between test scores? What students know and gross domestic product? How much a country is growing or how much it’s worth?

Jeremy Rappleye:  2:59
Yeah, thanks, Will. I’ll take the first question here, I would say that the common understanding of the relationship between test scores and gross domestic project is the higher your test scores, the greater your future GDP. This is the claim at its most simple and if we try to be more specific, the understanding is that the higher people test scores in a particular population in fields that are, say relevant for economic growth, the higher GDP will be in the future. So relevant fields here are most likely to be defined as math and science or math and science scores, and also language to a certain extent in particular reading. So the exact fields that international learning assessments such as PISA measure, and in that sense, we can also be more specific about the type of economic model embedded in this common understanding. Specifically, it is one that envisions an economy growing as a result of technological progress. That is, the more technological innovation and the accumulation of knowledge, the higher economic growth rates will be in the future.

Will Brehm:  4:02
And what sort of evidence exists, like do researchers have data, empirical data that shows that this relationship is correct, that higher test scores will equate to higher GDP in the future?

Jeremy Rappleye:  4:19
Yes. So in particular, in the last, let’s say, 10 years, the empirical research base for these claims has become very strong in some circles. Now, try to be specific here, the evidence for this common understanding in its current form, I believe, comes from, primarily from two researchers: one is Eric Hanushek at Stanford University and Ludger Woessmann. I apologize, I probably don’t pronounce the name right, based at Munich University. And I think Eric Hanushek appeared on FreshEd quite recently, if I’m not mistaken. In any case, their work constructs roughly a 40 year history of test scores, and matches that with 40 years of economic growth worldwide. So roughly from the 1960s to the year 2000. And when they say worldwide, they actually mean about 60 countries globally, mostly the high income countries that have participated in international assessments, international achievement tests consistently over that period. So to be more specific, their 40 year history of test scores combines data from two international comparative tests: the IEA-SIMS and TIMSS studies and the OECD’s recent PISA studies. So for GDP, they use a standard Penn World Table data set and listeners who are interested can find kind of full details of this in our paper. But I think the point here is that when Hanushek and Woessmann look at the longitudinal relationship between test scores and GDP growth, they find a very strong correlation. That means that across 60 countries, the higher test score outcomes were, the higher GDP growth was, and I think Hikaro might talk about this in more detail, the difference, particularly between the idea of association and causality.

But the point I want to make here is that it’s been so strong, these empirical claims have been so strong, that’s given a lot of momentum to the idea that there’s this strong empirical basis for the linkage between test scores and GDP. And I think that the work of Hanushek and Woessmann is spelled out in many places, as maybe I’ll discuss later in the interview. But the most comprehensive treatment is found in a book entitled “The Knowledge Capital of Nations – Education and the Economics of Growth”, which was published in the year 2015.

Will Brehm:  6:43
So you said that there’s a strong correlation, but is this the relationship between test scores and GDP causal? And I mean, maybe this is a little getting into some of the more technical statistical language here might be useful, to try and understand this claim.

Jeremy Rappleye:  7:02
Yes. So it’s a very good point. And it’s very important to understand the difference between an association or correlation and causality, I think we probably are betters to wait for Hikaro’s discussion of this. But let me kind of lead into that by giving you two quotes where Hanushek and Woessmann really make the claim that the relationship is causal, not just the correlation. So the first quote and this is this kind of crystallizes or kind of encapsulates the whole findings from their body of work, and they say, quote, “with respect to magnitude, one standard deviation in test scores measured at the OECD student level is associated with an average annual growth rate in GDP per capita, two percentage points higher over the 40 years that we observed.” Now, in that quote, they use the word association, as many of the listeners will have heard. But elsewhere, they talk and talk repeatedly about causality. So here’s the second quote, they say, “our earlier research shows the causal relationship between a nation skills its economic capital, and its long run growth rate, making it possible to estimate how education policies affect each nation’s expected economic performance.” So in simple terms, if you can boost test scores, you will achieve higher GDP growth. And this certainty comes out of the idea that the relationship is indeed causal.

Will Brehm:  8:38
That level of certainty, obviously, must impact education policymakers, right to know that if you increase scores as measured on PISA or TIMSS, you will achieve greater economic growth. I mean, it seems like it makes the lives of policymakers a lot easier.

Jeremy Rappleye:  8:55
Absolutely Will, we believe that the attraction, both the attraction of this claim, and the impact of this claim is growing. And through these types of studies, policymakers who previously had to deal with a very complex equation around education are led to believe that the data shows that an aggressive reform policy that increases test scores will, say, 20 or 30 years in the future, lead to major, quite major economic gains. And if I can give you just another quote, and I apologize for the quotes, but I don’t want you to think I’m misphrasing or summarizing the work of Eric Hanushek and Woessmann, but this quote that of their shows the types of kind of spectacular education gains or economic gains that policies can expect to achieve if they implement this kind of policies directed towards raising test scores. So here, I quote, “for lower middle income countries, future gains would be 13 times current GDP and an average out to a 28% higher GDP over the next 80 years. And for upper middle income countries, it would average out to a 16% higher GDP” unquote. So now, Will, if you are a policymaker, you wouldn’t want to forfeit these games, would you? So this research becomes really a motivation for policymakers putting a much greater emphasis on not just math and science, but on cognitive test scores across the board.

But there’s a fascinating bit here, I want to highlight and maybe we want to unpack it later on in the interview. But you might expect that this kind of narrowing the focus of education around test scores would create a lot of resistance. But actually, the GDP gains of increasing test scores that Hanushek and Woessmann project is actually so great that it is projected to pay for everything in education. So it’s not really a choice between alternatives. But instead of a sure-win policy versus kind of more of the same policy, uncertainty, ambiguity, complexity that we’ve seen in the past.

And sorry, this is a long answer, Will. But I would just really want to emphasize, if we talk about how these academic research claims are finding their way into policy or impacting policy, we have to talk about two organizations that have really latched onto these views, and are advocating them strongly to policymakers worldwide. And the first is the World Bank who hired Hanushek and Woessmann to connect their academic findings to policymaking for low income countries. And this report was published by the World Bank as education quality and economic growth as the title “Education Quality and Economic Growth” was published in 2007. And the second organization that has been really at the forefront here is the OECD, they also hired Hanushek and Woessmann to share their findings and discuss the policy implications. And this report was entitled, “Universal Basic Skills: What Countries Stand to Gain” and that was published in 2015. So maybe towards the end of the interview, after we discuss our study, we can return to discuss how these organizations are really central to making that empirical work into concrete policy recommendations.

Will Brehm:  12:13
So what sort of problems do you find with Hanushek and Woessmann analysis of the relationship between test scores and GDP?

Hikaru Komatsu:  12:23
Okay, the problem we found is temporal mismatch that is Professor Hanushek used an inappropriate period for economic growth. That is Professor Hanushek compare test scores recorded during 1960 to 2000 with economic growth for the same period. But this is a little bit strange. Why, because it takes at least several decades for students to become adults and occupy a major portion of workforce. So from our perspective, test scores for given period should be compared with economic growth in subsequent periods. This is the problem we found.

Will Brehm:  13:17
So for instance, it would be like the test scores from 1960 should be connected to the economic growth rate of say, the 1970s there needs to be some sort of gap between the two, is that correct?

Hikaru Komatsu:  13:31
That’s correct.

Will Brehm:  13:31
Okay. So then in your study, I mean, did you do this and what did you find?

Hikaru Komatsu:  13:36
We did this, our study is very simple. We compare test scores for 1960 to 2000, which is exactly the data used by Professor Hanushek. We compare this data with economic growth in subsequent periods such as 1980 to 2000 or 1990 to 2010 or something like that. And we found that the relationship between test scores and economic growth were much much weaker than that reported by Professor Hanushek. Probably audience would see figure in the web, in the website of FreshEd, and there would be two figures, left one is the original one reported by Professor Hanushek. And there is a strong relationship between economic growth and test scores. While the right one is that we found and the relationship is very unclear. So let me explain how we that relationship is when test score for 1960 to 2000 was compared with economic growth. For 1995 to 2014, only 10% of the variation in economic growth among countries was explained by the variation in test scores. That is, the remaining 90% of the variation in economic growth should be responsible for other factors. This means that it is totally unreasonable to use test scores as the only factor to predict future economic growth. And this is what Professor Hanushek did in his study and policy recommendations.

Will Brehm:  15:40
So in your study, you found that 10% of the variation of GDP can be explained by the variation of test scores. What percentage did Hanushek and Woessmann’s study uncover?

Hikaru Komatsu:  15:53
Probably their percentage was around 70 and we try to replicate Professor Hanushek’s finding, in our case, the percentage was 57 or so and the difference between 57, 70 would be caused by the difference in the version of the data we used. In order to extend that time period, we used an updated version of that data, that data set is exactly the same, but the difference is only the version.

Will Brehm:  16:28
So a difference between 50% and 70% is pretty minimal. But the difference between 10% and 70% is enough to question the basically the conclusions that are drawn from that data.

Hikaru Komatsu:  16:42
Yeah, right. If that relationship originally reported by Professor Hanushek is causal, we should have found that comparably strong relationship between test scores for a given period and economic growth for subsequence periods. But we found very weak relationship so it suggests that that relationship originally reported by Professor Hanushek does not always represent the causal relationship. This is our point.

Will Brehm:  17:17
It seems like this is a very profound point that could be rather earth shattering for many people’s assumptions about education and its value for economic growth.

Jeremy Rappleye:  17:31
Thanks, Will, I’d like to fill in a little bit pick up on what Komatsu sensei was arguing there. One of the important points to understand about this 70% of the variation is explained by test scores, the strength of that correlation leads to very strong policy recommendations. So, I’m going to try to unpack a little bit of what I said earlier, because I think it’s an important point, I’ll try to do it academically first, and then I will try to give a simple version that will be a lot easier for listeners to understand.

But basically, if you have a correlation causality link that strongly then Hanushek and Woessmann are claiming that you can first increase your test scores, and it will produce so much excessive growth in the future, that you can redirect that excessive growth back into all other types of educational goods that you need. So in terms of equity, in terms of inclusiveness, you could even redirect that much extra money into healthcare, to sustainability goals, all of these things. So as we both know, these are two sides of the camp is education for economic growth, or is it for equities, is it for inclusiveness, is it personal development. These are the types of debates that have always been with education as an academic study, but he’s able to transcend, they are able to transcend that debate based on the strong causal claims, though, just to fill that in academically. So the claim is that if 3.5% of GDP is spent for education, this is from the World Bank report in 2007. But if over 20 or 30 years, you could increase your test scores by point five standard deviation, it would lead to 5% higher GDP on average, and quote, “this gross dividend would more than cover all the primary and secondary schools spending.” What that means is if you focus on raising cognitive levels, test scores, you could get enough growth that you would ultimately get more money for education for whatever types of educational goals you want to pursue. In the 2015 OECD report Hanushek and Woessmann write that quote “the economic benefit of cognitive gains, carries tremendous potential as a way to address issues of poverty and limited healthcare and to foster new technologies needed to improve the sustainability and inclusiveness of growth.” So as I mentioned before, instead of a trade off between growth related policies and equity, the Hanushek’s results are so strong that they suggest that first raising test scores will eventually produce enough extra gain to pay for everything. So this really relieves them of the need to engage in the kinds of debates over priorities that have taken place for as long as education policy has been around.

Now, if that sounds academic, I apologize. Let me try to put it in more concrete terms to make it easier to understand. Sure. So if the United States based on the PISA 2000 scores could have a 20 or 30 year reform plan that would eventually lead them to achieve the level of Finland or Korea’s PISA scores in 2006. Hanushek claims that, Hanushek and Woessmann claims that GDP, United States’ GDP will be 5% bigger. Now Hanushek really spotlights that in 1989, the governors of the United States came together with then president George Bush, and they promised by the year 2000 to make America number one in the world in math and science. So at that time, it would have been a 50 point gain. And so Hanushek argues in a different work but produced by Brookings called “Endangering Prosperity”, that if the US would have stayed the course in 1989, and actually achieve the goals rather than getting distracted, its GDP would be 4.5% greater today. And that would allow us to solve all of our distributional, our, I’m American, apologies our distributional or equity issues that have constantly plagued American education. And even in more concrete terms Hanushek is based on that strong causality. He’s saying that the gains would actually equal and I quote, “20% higher paychecks for the average American worker over the entire 21st century.”

Will Brehm:  22:02
So he’s reading the future with that relationship that he assumes he can read the future and basically says that focus on test scores first and worry about everything else later, because we’re going to increase so much GDP that will be able to pay for everything that education needs. That’s kind of that policy gist.

Jeremy Rappleye:  22:25
That’s absolutely right, Will, and he made this calculation for the United States, as you can imagine, he’s based in the United States. But if you look at the OECD report, in 2015, they actually make the same calculations for all countries worldwide. So we spotlight that in our full paper in the introduction, just picking up the case of Ghana, because OECD really picked up the case of Ghana and say, you would have this huge economic gain if you could just stay the course on raising test scores.

Will Brehm:  22:54
So these are future predictions or projections. Has there ever been like a real life example of like a bit working the way Hanushek and Woessmann theorize?

Jeremy Rappleye:  23:07
Well, I believe that they would probably argue that the piece of data itself shows that it works. So of course, you have up and down fluctuations of individual countries, but I think they would have a hard time showing a particular country or giving you a case of a particular country who enacted reforms and then achieved higher GDP growth. It’s all abstracted to the level of correlation and causality rather than brought back into kind of concrete terms of particular countries.

Will Brehm:  23:44
And your analysis obviously shows that those future projections are incorrect, or wouldn’t necessarily work out the way Hanushek and Woessmann claim. You know, how do we begin to theorize that this connection between test scores and GDP, like what sort of implications does your study have on education policymakers?

Hikaru Komatsu:  24:09
In my opinion, or according to the data, it is okay to say that improving test score both lead to higher economic growth on average, but actually test scores are only one factor as we found, as we said, only 10% of the variation in economic growth was explained by the variation in test scores. So in that sense, educational test scores are only one factor affecting economic growth. And as we see there’s a huge variation in fiscal capital, land or enterprise between countries, and those should affect economic growth. So education is only one of those factors. This is, I think, reasonable understanding of the relationship between economic growth education and then affect us.

Will Brehm:  25:14
So in a sense, we recognize that education plays some role in future economic growth. But there are other things that also affect future economic growth. And we shouldn’t lose sight of them either.

Hikaru Komatsu:  25:25
You’re right. So that problem Professor Hanushek had is that he believed or assumed that it is the sole factor and he uses only test scores to predict future economic growth. But the route is not so simple. This is our point.

Will Brehm:  25:45
And it seems like it’s a simple point you’re making. But like I said, I think it’s quite profound, because it really upsets what countries are pursuing in their educational goals. I mean, it challenges the rise of PISA, I mean, are all of these countries that are trying to join PISA? Is this actually what they should be doing, right? I mean, for me, the policy implications become so much more difficult, and the confidence of certain policy prescriptions kind of goes out the door.

Jeremy Rappleye:  26:16
Yeah, Will. We would wholeheartedly agree with that summary of kind of the implications of our study, it is a simple idea. And it’s pretty obvious even to, let’s say, masters level students, that education is not that complex. But one of the problems is all of this big data creates all the potential for kind of this dog fight using data up at the higher stratosphere. And people can’t really touch that. So as long as you are up there fighting it out, then it seems to be pretty solid. And I think that to be very honest, actually, neither Hikaro or I really like doing this work that much. Right. To be very honest, we don’t really enjoy this work. We’d rather be thinking about big ideas and complex ideas and doing those types of things.

But the problem is that it blocks the view, the simple views of education block the complexity or the depth of what we should be seeing in these ecologies of education or these types of things. Now, that was a very kind of big picture response. But if we have time, I’d like to talk more specifically about the specific policy recommendations and what are the implications of our studies. So we believe that our research findings have recommendations but these are not really recommendations in the usual sense of identifying a best practice or a magic bullet or as a magical potion that will improve education worldwide. Instead, the implications of our research is what we might call negative policy recommendations. And by that, I mean it helps policymakers realize what they should not do. Specifically, it tells policymakers that they should not be seduced by promises that focusing on raising test scores, and purely test scores in areas such as science technology, math is a surefire policy that will raise GDP growth rates, and it tells them not to believe kind of advisors who would come in and tell them that raising test scores alone will lead to enough GDP, future growth to quote “and the financial and distributional problems of education,” unquote. Now I want to even be more specific about this, more concrete, two points. As most listeners will know, one of the biggest educational policy trends over the last two decades has been PISA. And there are currently plans to extend PISA to low income countries through the PISA for development exercise. I think that by 2030, the OECD and the World Bank plan to have PISA in every country worldwide, despite a whole range of critiques from academics, from practitioners, from just the normal belief that education is more complex than that.

The central rationale for the expansion of PISA testing is that it will lead to higher GDP growth. In effect, countries are being persuaded to sign up to PISA, because of the types of claims that we reviewed throughout this interview. But our research shows that this will not happen. Some of my favorite research in recent years have come from scholars around Paul Morris, at the Institute of Education in London, working with young scholars, Euan Auld, Yun You or Bob Adamson in Hong Kong, showing how PISA tests are really driven much more by a range of private companies such as Pearson, ETS, and so on. And scholars like Stephen Ball, Bob Lingard, and Sam Seller also write some great stuff along these lines. And another important line of research comes from folks like Radhika Gorur who writes about the dangers of standardization and how it might ultimately destroy the diversity necessary for future adaptation and innovation in education. And so again, we hope that our research removes the belief that research that, academic research somehow proves the PISA and GDP linkage, and that’s let’s policymakers see all of these warnings much more clearly. And if you let me quickly go on to the second dimension of really concrete, what’s happening now is that, as many listeners will also know, is that the world is, the world of education, where the development more generally is talking about the post 2015 goals. Basically, what comes after the Millennium Development Goals that we’re going in the 1990s. And in terms of education, the Sustainable Development Goal Four is the one that deals with education, it sets global targets for improving learning by 2030. And one of the disappointing things we have noticed in these discussions is that it seems the discussion seem to be imitating the OECD and World Bank that is, we see UNESCO and other agencies referring explicitly to the Hanushek and Woessmann studies to argue for why PISA-style assessments are the best way to achieve Sustainable Development Goal number four. And so compared to discussions around EFA, in the early 1990s, the discussion around the SDG number four seems to be taking this knowledge capital claim as truth as academic truth.

And we worried that this will put the whole world on a course for implementing PISA-style tests. And, of course, the change in curriculum that comes in its wake. I don’t want to be, you know, kind of, to overstate this too much. But we worried that there’s really no evidence for that and that these will be very costly exercises that will ultimately do very little to improve education. So, again, we hope our study will give policymakers the kind of academic research basis for resisting the advances made by the OECD and World Bank.

Will Brehm:  31:59
Have you experienced any pushback about some of the findings because I mean, obviously, you’re challenging some of the wisdom that’s taken for granted by the World Bank, by the OECD, by private companies, like you said, Pearson and ETS, the Educational Testing Service, which produces a whole bunch of tests. So I mean, one would imagine that your negative recommendations that come out of your findings may ultimately create a pushback from those who interests are being challenged.

Jeremy Rappleye:  32:30
Yeah, I guess we would love to have a pushback, because pushback implies an explicit engagement. Again, our findings are not new, that there’s no link between educational outcomes and GDP growth. These claims are very, this idea is actually very old. But what happens is that with each kind of wave of data that comes out that kind of dog fight that I was talking about, kind of gets it goes from maybe kids throwing rocks at each other from different trees up to hot air balloons up to airplanes up to jet planes, and it just keeps going up. There’s no real engagement with the ground level realities that would refute all of this. So if we were to get pushback, we would welcome it. We would love to see the evidence because our mind is not made up. It’s quite possible. I mean, there are no certainties, and it would be wonderful to see a more elaborate discussion around these ideas. So our results are conclusive. But in the sense of with that data set, it conclusively disproves a particular hypothesis or claim, but they’re not conclusive in the terms of a terminus of learning. There’s always more that we can understand about the relation the complex relationship between society, economics, culture and these types of things. So we would really welcome that as a way to elaborate.

Will Brehm:  34:00
Well, I really hope that you can kind of open up this door for a much deeper engagement to get to some of those big questions that you obviously have in mind, but Hikaro Komatsu and Jeremy Rappleye, thank you so much for joining Fresh Ed. It was really a pleasure to talk today.

Hikaru Komatsu:  34:15
Thanks for having us. I really enjoyed it.

Jeremy Rappleye:  34:18
Thank you very much, Will. Keep up the great work. We all appreciate the hard work you’re doing on behalf of educational researchers and educational practitioners worldwide.

Will Brehm 2:12
Hikaru Komatsu和Jeremy Rappleye,你们好,欢迎做客FreshEd!

Hikaru Komatsu 2:16

Jeremy Rappleye 2:18

Will Brehm 2:30

Jeremy Rappleye 2:59

Will Brehm 4:02

Jeremy Rappleye 4:19
是的,尤其在过去10年左右的时间里,这一观点在某些圈子里得到了很强的实证研究支持。展开来说,很多关于目前这个共识的证据主要都是源自于两位研究者,分别是斯坦福大学的埃里克·哈努谢克(Eric Hanushek)教授和慕尼黑大学的卢德格尔·沃斯曼因(Ludger Woessmann)教授。如果我没记错的话,FreshEd之前有一期节目就请到过哈努谢克教授。话说回来,他们两人研究了1960至2000年间,差不多40年的考试成绩,并与同时期世界范围内的经济发展情况相对照。这里所谓的世界范围是指全球近60个国家,绝大多数是在上述时期参加过国际评估和国际成果测试的高收入国家。更具体地来说,他们结合了两项国际比较测试的数据,即国际教育成就评价协会(IEA)的第二次国际数学研究(SIMS)和国际数学与科学趋势研究(TIMSS),以及经济合作与发展组织(OECD)的PISA;GDP采用的是佩恩表(Penn World Table)的标准数据库,感兴趣的读者可以在我们的论文里找到所有的详细数据。哈努谢克和沃斯曼因研究了考试成绩和GDP增长之间的纵向关系,发现两者有很强的相关性。也就是说,在这60个国家里,谁的测试得分越高,谁的GDP增长就越高。这一点过会儿Komatsu教授会详细讨论,尤其是关于相关性和因果的概念。

Will Brehm 6:43

Jeremy Rappleye 7:02
你问到点子上了!关联性,或者说相关性,和因果性是不一样的。理解这一点很关键。我想最好是一会儿由Komatsu教授来具体解释。在那之前,我先引用两处哈努谢克和沃斯曼因的原话,他们提到成绩和GDP之间有因果关系,而不仅仅是有相关性。第一处是在概述研究的主要发现时,他们写到:“对于影响的程度,OECD 学生水平测试成绩的一个标准差与GDP的平均年增长率有关,在我们观察到的40年间,这一数字高出了两个百分点。”大家可能也都听到了,他们在这里用的词是“关系到”。但此外的其他地方,他们反复谈论的却是“因果关系”。比如我要引用的第二处,他们写到:“此前我们的研究显示,一个国家的技能(即它的经济资本)与长期增长率之间存在因果关系,因此能够推测教育政策是如何影响国家的预期经济效益。”简单来说就是,只要能提高考试成绩,就能实现GDP增长。也只有因果关系才能得出这么肯定的结论。

Will Brehm 8:38

Jeremy Rappleye 8:55
抱歉说了这么多,我还要强调最后一点,是关于这些学术研究的主张如何进入到政策领域的。有两个组织功不可没,一个是世界银行(World Bank),另一个是OECD。他们牢牢抓住这些研究成果,并向世界各国的政策制定者积极推广。前者聘请了哈努谢克和沃斯曼因,要求他们研究成果运用到低收入国家的政策制定中去。2007年世界银行发表了题为《教育质量在经济增长中的作用》的报告。后者同样也聘请了哈努谢克和沃斯曼因来分享研究成果、讨论政策意义,并于2015年发布了《普及基本技能:国家能获得什么》的报告。在谈完我们的研究之后,如果访谈结束前还有时间的话,可以回过头来再讨论一下这些组织在推动实证研究进入具体政策建议中的重要作用。

Will Brehm 12:13

Hikaru Komatsu 12:23

Will Brehm 13:17

Hikaru Komatsu 13:31

Will Brehm 13:31

Hikaru Komatsu 13:36

Will Brehm 15:40

Hikaru Komatsu 15:53

Will Brehm 16:28

Hikaru Komatsu 16:42

Will Brehm 17:17

Jeremy Rappleye 17:31
这听上去可能比较学术,不好意思。为方便理解,我举个具体例子吧。比如美国,哈努谢克和沃斯曼因声称,基于其在2000年PISA测试中的成绩,如果有一个20年或30年的改革计划使其提高到2006年PISA测试中的芬兰或韩国的水平,那么美国的GDP会有5%的增长。哈努谢克和沃斯曼因他们还指出,早在1989年,时任美国总统的乔治·布什(George Bush)和各州州长曾承诺到2000年要让美国学生的数学和科学成绩成为世界第一,在那时候,也就是提高50分。他在由布鲁金斯学会(Brookings Institution)出版的另一本题为《濒危的繁荣》的书中称,如果美国在1989年坚持这一政策,切实实现目标而没有分心的话,那么美国的GDP应该比现在多4.5%。那么,这样就能解决所有困扰我们教育系统的分配和公平的问题。抱歉,因为我是美国人,所以用“我们”一词。基于那种超强的因果关系,哈努谢克通过具体的数据表示,(成绩提高)带来的效益会使“在整个21世纪,美国工人的平均收入提高20%。”

Will Brehm 22:02

Jeremy Rappleye 22:25

Will Brehm 22:54

Jeremy Rappleye 23:07

Will Brehm 23:44

Hikaru Komatsu 24:09

Will Brehm 25:14

Hikaru Komatsu 25:25

Will Brehm 25:45

Jeremy Rappleye 26:16
然而,我们的研究恰恰表明那一观点所期待的结果未必会发生。近年来也有其他一些我很喜欢的研究,比如伦敦大学学院教育学院的莫礼时(Paul Morris),他和尤安·奥尔德(Euan Auld)、游韵,以及香港的鲍勃·亚当森(Bob Adamson)等中、青年学者的研究认为,PISA其实更多是由培生(Pearson)、美国教育考试服务中心(ETS)等私企所推动的;史蒂芬·鲍尔(Stephen Ball)、鲍勃·林嘉德(Bob Lingard)和山姆·塞勒(Sam Sellar)等学者在诸多论文里也提出了类似的观点。此外,还有一些学者如拉迪卡·哥尔(Radhika Gorur),他们的研究显示出标准化的危害,以及它将如何最终破坏未来教育变革和创新所需的多样性。这些学术研究都表明PISA和GDP之间并无多少联系。希望我们的研究能再次证明这一点,并帮助政策制定者更清楚地看到学界的这些示警。

Will Brehm 31:59

Jeremy Rappleye 32:30

Will Brehm 34:00
我真的希望你们能打开这扇门,探触到你们脑海中已经形成的那些更深刻更复杂的问题。Hikaru Komatsu和Jeremy Rappleye,很高兴你们能来做客FreshEd,再次感谢你们的分享!

Hikaru Komatsu 34:15

Jeremy Rappleye 34:18

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Will Brehm:  2:12
HikaruKomatsu et Jeremy Rappleye, bienvenue à FreshEd.

Hikaru Komatsu:  2:16
Merci de nous recevoir.

Jeremy Rappleye:  2:18
Merci, Will. Avant de commencer, laissez-moi vous dire à quel point j’apprécie votre spectacle. Et j’ai tellement appris de lui. Et je vous félicite vraiment d’avoir créé cet espace et de faire des spectacles de si grande envergure, semaine après semaine. Merci beaucoup de nous recevoir.

Will Brehm:  2:30
Merci pour ces aimables propos. Vous avez beaucoup travaillé ces derniers temps pour réfuter certaines hypothèses banales entre les résultats des tests et le PIB – produit intérieur brut. Quelle est la relation normale que de nombreux chercheurs entretiennent entre les résultats des tests ? Que savent les étudiants et le produit intérieur brut ? Quelle est la croissance d’un pays ou quelle est sa valeur ?

Jeremy Rappleye:  2:59
Oui, merci, Will. Je répondrai à la première question ici, je dirais que la compréhension commune de la relation entre les résultats des tests et le projet intérieur brut est que plus vos résultats aux tests sont élevés, plus votre PIB futur est important. C’est l’affirmation la plus simple qui soit et si nous essayons d’être plus précis, il est entendu que plus les gens obtiennent des résultats aux tests dans une population particulière dans des domaines qui sont, disons, pertinents pour la croissance économique, plus le PIB sera élevé à l’avenir. Ainsi, les domaines pertinents ici sont plus susceptibles d’être définis comme les mathématiques et les sciences ou les scores en mathématiques et en sciences, ainsi que la langue dans une certaine mesure, en particulier la lecture. Les domaines exacts que les évaluations internationales de l’apprentissage telles que PISA mesurent, et dans ce sens, nous pouvons également être plus précis sur le type de modèle économique qui s’inscrit dans cette compréhension commune. Plus précisément, il s’agit d’un modèle qui envisage une économie en croissance grâce au progrès technologique. En d’autres termes, plus l’innovation technologique et l’accumulation de connaissances seront nombreuses, plus les taux de croissance économique seront élevés à l’avenir.

Will Brehm:  4:02
Et quel type de preuve existe-t-il, comme les chercheurs disposent-ils de données, de données empiriques qui montrent que cette relation est correcte, que des résultats plus élevés aux tests seront synonymes d’un PIB plus élevé à l’avenir ?

Jeremy Rappleye:  4:19
Oui. Donc, au cours des dix dernières années, par exemple, la base de recherche empirique pour ces affirmations est devenue très forte dans certains milieux. Maintenant, tentez d’être précis, les preuves de cette compréhension commune sous sa forme actuelle, je crois, proviennent principalement de deux chercheurs : l’un est Eric Hanushek de l’université de Stanford et l’autre Ludger Woessmann. Je m’excuse, je ne prononce probablement pas correctement le nom, basé à l’université de Munich. Et je pense qu’Eric Hanushek est apparu sur FreshEd tout récemment, si je ne me trompe pas. Quoi qu’il en soit, leur travail retrace environ 40 ans d’histoire des résultats aux tests, ce qui correspond à 40 ans de croissance économique mondiale. Donc à peu près des années 1960 à l’an 2000. Et lorsqu’ils disent mondial, ils font en fait référence à environ 60 pays dans le monde, principalement les pays à revenu élevé qui ont participé à des évaluations internationales, des tests de performance internationaux de façon constante au cours de cette période. Pour être plus précis, l’historique des résultats de ces tests sur 40 ans regroupe des données provenant de deux tests comparatifs internationaux : les études IEA-SIMS et TIMSS et les récentes études PISA de l’OCDE. Ainsi, pour le PIB, ils utilisent un ensemble de données standard de la Penn World Table et les auditeurs intéressés peuvent trouver des détails complets à ce sujet dans notre document. Mais je pense que le point ici est que lorsque Hanushek et Woessmann examinent la relation longitudinale entre les résultats des tests et la croissance du PIB, ils trouvent une très forte corrélation. Cela signifie que dans 60 pays, plus les résultats aux tests sont élevés, plus la croissance du PIB est élevée, et je pense que Hikarumight en parle plus en détail, la différence, en particulier entre l’idée d’association et de causalité.

Mais ce que je veux dire ici, c’est que ces affirmations empiriques sont si fortes, qu’elles ont donné beaucoup d’élan à l’idée qu’il existe cette base empirique solide pour le lien entre les résultats des tests et le PIB. Et je pense que le travail de Hanushek et de Woessmann est bien expliqué à de nombreux endroits, comme je l’expliquerai peut-être plus tard dans l’interview. Mais le traitement le plus exhaustif se trouve dans un livre intitulé “The Knowledge Capital of Nations – Education and the Economics of Growth”, qui a été publié en 2015.

Will Brehm:  6:43
Vous avez donc indiqué qu’il y a une forte corrélation, mais est-ce que la relation entre les résultats des tests et le PIB est causale ? Et je veux dire, peut-être que c’est un peu entrer dans le langage statistique plus technique qui pourrait être utile ici, pour essayer de comprendre cette affirmation.

Jeremy Rappleye:  7:02
Oui, c’est donc un point très pertinent. Et il est essentiel de comprendre la différence entre une association ou une corrélation et une causalité, je trouve que nous sommes probablement mieux placés pour attendre la discussion d’Hikaro à ce sujet. Mais laissez-moi vous guider en vous donnant deux citations où Hanushek et Woessmann affirment que la relation est causale, et pas seulement la corrélation. La première citation, qui est en quelque sorte une synthèse des résultats de leurs travaux, dit, je cite, “en ce qui concerne l’ampleur, un écart-type des résultats aux tests mesurés au niveau des étudiants de l’OCDE est associé à un taux de croissance annuel moyen du PIB par habitant, supérieur de deux points de pourcentage sur les 40 ans que nous avons observés”. Maintenant, dans cette citation, ils utilisent le mot association, comme beaucoup d’auditeurs l’auront entendu. Mais ailleurs, ils parlent et évoquent sans cesse la causalité. Voici donc la deuxième citation, ils disent : “nos recherches antérieures démontrent la relation de causalité entre les compétences d’une nation son capital économique, et son taux de croissance à long terme, ce qui permet d’estimer comment les politiques d’éducation affectent la performance économique attendue de chaque nation”. Donc, pour faire simple, si vous pouvez améliorer les résultats aux tests, vous obtiendrez une croissance du PIB plus élevée. Et cette certitude découle de l’idée que la relation est effectivement causale.

Will Brehm:  8:38
Ce niveau de certitude doit évidemment avoir un impact sur les décideurs politiques en matière d’éducation, qui ont le droit de savoir que si vous augmentez les scores mesurés par PISA ou TIMSS, vous obtiendrez une plus grande croissance économique. Il semble que cela facilite grandement la vie des décideurs politiques.

Jeremy Rappleye:  8:55
Tout à fait Will, nous pensons que l’attrait, à la fois l’attrait de cette revendication, et l’impact de cette revendication sont en croissance. Et grâce à ce type d’études, les décideurs politiques qui devaient auparavant faire face à une équation très complexe autour de l’éducation sont amenés à croire que les données révèlent qu’une politique de réforme dynamique qui accroît les résultats aux tests conduira, disons, dans 20 ou 30 ans, à des gains économiques importants, assez importants. Et si je peux vous donner juste une autre citation, et je m’excuse pour les citations, je ne veux pas que vous pensiez que j’ai mal formulé ou résumé le travail d’Eric Hanushek et de Woessmann, mais cette citation, celle de leur auteur, illustre le type de bénéfices spectaculaires en matière d’éducation ou de gains économiques que les politiques peuvent espérer obtenir si elles mettent en œuvre ce type de politiques visant à augmenter les résultats aux tests. Ainsi, je cite : “Pour les pays à revenu moyen inférieur, les gains futurs seraient de 13 fois le PIB actuel et une moyenne de 28 % de PIB plus élevée au cours des 80 prochaines années. Et pour les pays à revenu moyen supérieur, la moyenne serait de 16 % de PIB en plus”. Alors maintenant, Will, si vous êtes un décideur politique, vous ne voudriez pas renoncer à ces jeux, n’est-ce pas ? Cette recherche devient donc une véritable motivation pour les décideurs politiques, qui mettent davantage l’accent non seulement sur les mathématiques et les sciences, mais aussi sur les résultats des tests cognitifs dans tous les domaines.

Mais il existe une partie fascinante que je veux souligner et que nous voulons peut-être décortiquer plus tard dans l’interview. Mais on peut s’attendre à ce que ce genre de rétrécissement du champ de l’éducation autour des résultats des tests suscite beaucoup de réticences. Mais en réalité, les gains de PIB résultant de l’augmentation des résultats aux tests, que Hanushek et Woessmann projettent, sont si importants qu’ils devraient permettre de financer tout ce qui concerne l’éducation. Il ne s’agit donc pas vraiment de choisir entre plusieurs alternatives. Mais au lieu d’une politique gagnante à coup sûr contre une politique plus ou moins identique, l’incertitude, l’ambiguïté, la complexité que nous avons vues par le passé.

Et je suis désolé, c’est une longue réponse, Will. Mais je tiens à insister sur le fait que si nous évoquons la manière dont ces affirmations de la recherche universitaire se frayent un chemin jusqu’à la politique ou ont un impact sur la politique, nous devons parler de deux organisations qui se sont vraiment appropriées ces points de vue et les défendent avec force auprès des décideurs politiques du monde entier. La première est la Banque mondiale, qui a recruté Hanushek et Woessmann pour faire le lien entre les résultats de leurs recherches universitaires et l’élaboration de politiques pour les pays à faible revenu. Et ce rapport a été publié par la Banque mondiale sous le titre “Qualité de l’éducation et croissance économique” en 2007. La deuxième organisation qui a vraiment été à l’avant-garde dans ce domaine est l’OCDE, qui a également engagé Hanushek et Woessmann pour partager leurs conclusions et discuter des implications politiques. Et ce rapport était intitulé ” Universal Basic Skills : What Countries Stand to Gain”, qui a été publié en 2015. Donc, peut-être que vers la fin de l’entretien, après avoir discuté de notre étude, nous pourrons revenir sur la façon dont ces organisations sont réellement au centre de la transformation de ce travail empirique en recommandations politiques concrètes.

Will Brehm:  12:13
Quels sont donc les types de problèmes que vous trouvez dans l’analyse de Hanushek et Woessmann sur la relation entre les résultats des tests et le PIB ?

Hikaru Komatsu:  12:23
D’accord, le problème rencontré est le déphasage temporel, c’est-à-dire que le professeur Hanushek a utilisé une période inappropriée pour la croissance économique. C’est-à-dire que le professeur Hanushek compare les résultats des tests enregistrés entre 1960 et 2000 avec la croissance économique pour la même période. Mais c’est un peu étrange. Pourquoi, parce qu’il faut au moins plusieurs décennies pour que les étudiants deviennent adultes et occupent une grande partie de la population active. Donc, de notre point de vue, les résultats des tests pour une période donnée devraient être comparés à la croissance économique des périodes suivantes. C’est le problème que nous avons rencontré.

Will Brehm:  13:17
Ainsi, par exemple, les résultats des tests de 1960 devraient être liés au taux de croissance économique, par exemple, dans les années 1970, il doit y avoir une sorte d’écart entre les deux, est-ce exact ?

Hikaru Komatsu:  13:31
C’est tout à fait exact.

Will Brehm:  13:31
D’accord. Alors, dans votre étude, je veux dire, avez-vous fait cela et qu’avez-vous trouvé ?

Hikaru Komatsu:  13:36
Nous l’avons réalisé, notre étude est très simple. Nous comparons les résultats des tests de 1960 à 2000, ce qui correspond exactement aux données utilisées par le professeur Hanushek. Nous mettons ces données en parallèle avec la croissance économique des périodes suivantes, comme 1980 à 2000 ou 1990 à 2010, ou quelque chose comme ça. Et nous avons trouvé que la relation entre les résultats des tests et la croissance économique était beaucoup plus faible que celle rapportée par le professeur Hanushek. Le public verrait probablement un chiffre sur le web, sur le site de FreshEd, et il y aurait deux chiffres, celui de gauche est le chiffre original rapporté par le professeur Hanushek. Et il existe une relation étroite entre la croissance économique et les résultats aux tests. Alors que le chiffre de droite est celui que nous avons trouvé et la relation est très peu claire. Permettez-moi donc d’expliquer comment nous avons établi cette relation lorsque les résultats des tests de 1960 à 2000 ont été comparés à la croissance économique. Pour les années 1995 à 2014, seuls 10 % des variations de la croissance économique entre les pays s’expliquent par la variation des résultats aux tests. Autrement dit, les 90 % restants de la variation de la croissance économique devraient être responsables d’autres facteurs. Cela revient à dire qu’il est totalement déraisonnable d’utiliser les résultats des tests comme seul facteur pour prédire la croissance économique future. Et c’est ce que le professeur Hanushek a fait dans son étude et ses recommandations politiques.

Will Brehm:  15:40
Ainsi, dans votre étude, vous avez constaté que 10 % de la variation du PIB peut s’expliquer par la variation des résultats aux tests. Quel pourcentage l’étude de Hanushek et Woessmann a-t-elle mis en évidence ?

Hikaru Komatsu:  15:53
Leur pourcentage était sans doute d’environ 70 et nous essayons de reproduire la conclusion du professeur Hanushek, dans notre cas, le pourcentage était d’environ 57 et la différence entre 57, 70 serait due à la différence de version des données que nous avons utilisées. Afin de prolonger cette période, nous avons utilisé une version actualisée de ces données, cet ensemble de données est exactement le même, mais la différence n’est que la version.

Will Brehm:  16:28
Une différence entre 50 et 70 % est plutôt minime. Mais la différence entre 10 % et 70 % est suffisante pour remettre en question les conclusions fondamentales qui sont tirées de ces données.

Hikaru Komatsu:  16:42
Oui, en effet. Si cette relation décrite à l’origine par le professeur Hanushek est causale, nous aurions dû trouver cette relation relativement forte entre les résultats des tests pour une période donnée et la croissance économique pour les périodes suivantes. Mais nous avons trouvé une relation très faible, ce qui suggère que la relation rapportée à l’origine par le professeur Hanushek ne représente pas toujours la relation de cause à effet. C’est là où nous voulons en venir.

Will Brehm:  17:17
Il semble que ce soit un point très fondamental qui pourrait être plutôt déconcertant pour les hypothèses de nombreuses personnes sur l’éducation et sa valeur pour la croissance économique.

Jeremy Rappleye:  17:31
Merci, Will, j’aimerais revenir un peu sur ce que Komatsu sensei a évoqué là-bas. Un des points majeurs à comprendre à propos de ces 70 % de variation est expliqué par les résultats des tests, la puissance de cette corrélation conduit à des recommandations politiques très fortes. Donc, je vais essayer de déballer un peu ce que j’ai dit plus tôt, parce que je pense que c’est un point important, je vais essayer de le faire de manière académique d’abord, et ensuite je vais essayer de donner une version simple qui sera beaucoup plus facile à comprendre pour les auditeurs.

Mais fondamentalement, si vous avez un lien de causalité de corrélation aussi fort, alors Hanushek et Woessmann affirment que vous pouvez d’abord accroître vos résultats aux tests, et cela produira une croissance tellement excessive à l’avenir, que vous pouvez réorienter cette croissance excessive vers tous les autres types de biens éducatifs dont vous avez besoin. Ainsi, en termes d’équité, en termes d’inclusion, vous pourriez même réorienter cette somme supplémentaire vers les soins de santé, vers des objectifs de durabilité, toutes ces choses. Comme nous le savons tous les deux, il s’agit là de deux aspects du camp : l’éducation pour la croissance économique, ou bien les actions, l’inclusion, le développement personnel. Ce sont les types de débats qui ont toujours été menés avec l’éducation en tant qu’étude académique, mais il est capable de transcender, ils sont capables de transcender ce débat basé sur les fortes revendications causales, cependant, juste pour remplir cela de manière académique. L’affirmation veut donc que si 3,5 % du PIB est dépensé pour l’éducation, cela provient du rapport de la Banque mondiale de 2007. Mais si, sur 20 ou 30 ans, vous pouviez accroître vos résultats aux tests de cinq points d’écart type, cela entraînerait une hausse de 5 % du PIB en moyenne, et je cite : “ce dividende brut couvrirait largement toutes les dépenses en matière d’écoles primaires et secondaires”. Cela revient à dire que si vous vous concentrez sur l’accroissement des niveaux cognitifs, des résultats aux tests, vous pourriez obtenir une croissance suffisante pour obtenir en fin de compte plus d’argent pour l’éducation, quel que soit le type d’objectifs éducatifs que vous souhaitez poursuivre. Dans le rapport de l’OCDE de 2015, Hanushek et Woessmann écrivent que “les avantages économiques des gains cognitifs offrent un potentiel énorme pour résoudre les problèmes de pauvreté et de soins de santé limités et pour encourager les nouvelles technologies nécessaires pour améliorer la durabilité et l’intégration de la croissance”. Ainsi, comme je l’ai déjà mentionné, au lieu d’un compromis entre les politiques liées à la croissance et l’équité, les résultats du Hanushek sont si probants qu’ils suggèrent qu’une première hausse des résultats aux tests produira finalement suffisamment de gains supplémentaires pour tout payer. Cela les dispense donc vraiment de s’engager dans le genre de débats sur les priorités qui ont lieu depuis que la politique de l’éducation existe.

Maintenant, si cela paraît académique, je m’en excuse. Laissez-moi essayer de le formuler en termes plus concrets pour le rendre plus facile à comprendre. Bien sûr, si les États-Unis se fondaient sur les résultats de PISA 2000, ils pourraient avoir un plan de réforme sur 20 ou 30 ans qui les amènerait à atteindre le niveau des résultats de PISA de la Finlande ou de la Corée en 2006. Hanushek et Woessmann affirment que le PIB, le PIB des États-Unis sera supérieur à 5 %. Hanushek met en avant le fait qu’en 1989, les gouverneurs des États-Unis se sont réunis avec le président George Bush et qu’ils ont promis de faire de l’Amérique le numéro un mondial en mathématiques et en sciences d’ici l’an 2000. À l’époque, cela aurait donc représenté un gain de 50 points. C’est pourquoi Hanushek affirme dans un autre ouvrage, mais produit par Brookings et intitulé “Endangering Prosperity”, que si les États-Unis avaient maintenu le cap en 1989 et avaient réellement atteint les objectifs fixés plutôt que de se laisser distraire, leur PIB serait aujourd’hui supérieur de 4,5 %. Et cela nous permettrait de résoudre tous nos problèmes de distribution, de, je suis américain, d’excuses, de répartition ou d’équité qui ont constamment affligé l’éducation américaine. Et même en termes plus concrets, Hanushek est basé sur cette forte causalité. Il dit que les gains seraient en fait égaux et je cite : “20% de salaires en plus pour le travailleur américain moyen sur l’ensemble du 21ème siècle”.

Will Brehm:  22:02
Ainsi, il lit l’avenir avec cette relation qu’il suppose pouvoir lire l’avenir et dit en gros qu’il faut se focaliser sur les résultats des tests d’abord et se préoccuper de tout le reste ensuite, parce que nous allons tellement augmenter le PIB que nous pourrons payer tout ce dont l’éducation a besoin. C’est en quelque sorte l’essence même de cette politique.

Jeremy Rappleye:  22:25
C’est bien cela, Will, et il a fait ce calcul pour les États-Unis, comme vous pouvez l’imaginer, il est basé aux États-Unis. Mais si vous regardez le rapport de l’OCDE, en 2015, ils font en fait les mêmes calculs pour tous les pays du monde. C’est pourquoi nous mettons l’accent sur ce point dans notre document intégral en introduction, en reprenant le cas du Ghana, parce que l’OCDE a vraiment repris le cas du Ghana et a dit : “Vous auriez cet énorme gain économique si vous pouviez simplement maintenir le cap sur l’amélioration des résultats aux tests.

Will Brehm:  22:54
Il s’agit donc de prévisions ou de projections futures. Y a-t-il jamais eu un exemple concret de la façon dont Hanushek et Woessmann théorisent ?

Jeremy Rappleye:  23:07
Eh bien, je suppose qu’ils pourraient probablement soutenir que l’élément de données lui-même montre que cela fonctionne. Il existe donc bien évidemment des variations à la hausse et à la baisse pour chaque pays, mais je pense qu’il serait difficile de montrer un pays en particulier ou de vous donner le cas d’un pays qui a mis en œuvre des réformes et qui a ensuite enregistré une croissance plus élevée de son PIB. Tout est ramené au niveau de la corrélation et de la causalité plutôt qu’aux termes concrets de pays particuliers.

Will Brehm:  23:44
Votre analyse indique évidemment que ces projections sont incorrectes, ou ne fonctionneraient pas nécessairement comme le prétendent Hanushek et Woessmann. Vous savez, comment pouvons-nous commencer à théoriser que ce lien entre les résultats des tests et le PIB, comme par exemple quel type d’implications votre étude a sur les décideurs politiques de l’éducation ?

Hikaru Komatsu:  24:09
À mon humble avis, ou selon les données, on peut affirmer que l’amélioration des résultats aux tests entraîne une croissance économique plus élevée en moyenne, mais en réalité, les résultats aux tests ne sont qu’un facteur parmi d’autres, car nous avons découvert, comme nous l’avons dit, que seulement 10 % de la variation de la croissance économique s’expliquait par la variation des résultats aux tests. Donc, en ce sens, les résultats des tests éducatifs ne sont qu’un facteur influençant la croissance économique. Et comme nous le voyons, il existe une énorme variation du capital fiscal, des terres ou des entreprises entre les pays, et cela devrait affecter la croissance économique. L’éducation n’est donc qu’un de ces facteurs. C’est, je pense, une compréhension raisonnable de la relation entre la croissance économique, l’éducation et les effets sur nous.

Will Brehm:  25:14
Ainsi, dans un sens, nous reconnaissons que l’éducation joue un rôle dans la croissance économique future. Mais il existe d’autres facteurs qui influent également sur la croissance économique future. Et nous ne devrions pas les perdre de vue non plus.

Hikaru Komatsu:  25:25
Vous avez raison. Le problème du professeur Hanushek est donc qu’il croit ou suppose que c’est le seul facteur et qu’il n’utilise que les résultats des tests pour prédire la croissance économique future. Mais le chemin n’est pas si simple. C’est là où nous voulons en venir.

Will Brehm:  25:45
Et on dirait que c’est un simple point de vue. Mais comme je l’ai dit, je pense que c’est assez sérieux, parce que cela bouleverse vraiment les objectifs éducatifs des pays. Je veux dire que cela remet en question la montée en puissance du PISA, je veux dire, est-ce que tous ces pays qui essaient de rejoindre le PISA ? Est-ce vraiment ce qu’ils devraient faire, n’est-ce pas ? Je veux dire que pour moi, les implications politiques deviennent beaucoup plus difficiles, et la confiance de certaines prescriptions politiques disparaît en quelque sorte.

Jeremy Rappleye:  26:16
En effet, Will. Nous sommes tout à fait d’accord avec ce résumé des implications de notre étude, c’est une idée simple. Et il est assez évident, même pour, disons, des étudiants de niveau master, que l’éducation n’est pas si complexe. Mais l’un des problèmes est que toutes ces grandes données créent un potentiel pour ce genre de combat de chiens en utilisant des données de la haute stratosphère. Et les gens ne peuvent pas vraiment y toucher. Donc, tant que vous êtes là-haut à vous battre, alors cela semble assez solide. Et je pense que pour être très honnête, en fait, ni Hikaruor ni moi n’aimons vraiment faire ce travail à ce point. C’est vrai. Pour être très honnête, nous n’aimons pas vraiment ce travail. Nous préférons penser à de grandes idées et à des idées complexes et faire ce genre de choses.

Mais le problème est que cela limite la vue, les vues simples de l’éducation limitent la complexité ou la profondeur de ce que nous devrions voir dans ces écologies de l’éducation ou ce genre de choses. C’était une sorte de réponse globale. Mais si nous avons le temps, j’aimerais parler plus précisément des recommandations politiques spécifiques et des implications de nos études. Nous pensons donc que les résultats de nos recherches comportent des recommandations, mais il ne s’agit pas vraiment de recommandations au sens habituel du terme, c’est-à-dire l’identification d’une meilleure pratique ou d’une solution miracle ou d’une potion magique qui améliorera l’éducation dans le monde entier. Au contraire, les implications de nos recherches sont ce que l’on pourrait appeler des recommandations politiques négatives. Et par là, je veux dire qu’elles aident les décideurs politiques à réaliser ce qu’ils ne devraient pas faire. Plus précisément, elle leur dit qu’ils ne doivent pas se laisser séduire par des promesses selon lesquelles le fait de se concentrer sur l’augmentation des notes d’examen, et uniquement des notes d’examen dans des domaines tels que la science et la technologie, les mathématiques est une politique infaillible qui augmentera les taux de croissance du PIB, et elle leur dit de ne pas croire le genre de conseillers qui viendraient leur dire que l’augmentation des notes d’examen à elle seule conduira à un PIB suffisant, à une croissance future pour citer “et aux problèmes financiers et de répartition de l’éducation”, pour ne pas citer. Je voudrais maintenant être encore plus précis sur ce point, plus concret, sur deux points. Comme la plupart des auditeurs le savent, l’une des plus grandes tendances en matière de politique de l’éducation au cours des deux dernières décennies a été l’enquête PISA. Et il est actuellement prévu d’étendre le PISA aux pays à faible revenu dans le cadre de l’exercice PISA pour le développement. Je pense que d’ici 2030, l’OCDE et la Banque mondiale prévoient de mettre en place le PISA dans tous les pays du monde, en dépit de toute une série de critiques émanant d’universitaires, de praticiens, de la croyance normale selon laquelle l’éducation est plus complexe que cela.

La principale raison de l’extension du test PISA est qu’elle mènera à une plus forte croissance du PIB. En effet, les pays sont amenés à s’inscrire au PISA, en raison des types d’allégations que nous avons analysées tout au long de cet entretien. Mais nos recherches indiquent que ce ne sera pas le cas. Certaines de mes recherches préférées de ces dernières années ont été menées par des chercheurs autour de Paul Morris, à l’Institut de l’éducation de Londres, en collaboration avec de jeunes universitaires, Euan Auld, Yun You ou Bob Adamson à Hong Kong, ce qui illustre le fait que les tests PISA sont en réalité beaucoup plus pilotés par une série d’entreprises privées telles que Pearson, ETS, etc. Et des universitaires comme Stephen Ball, Bob Lingard et Sam Seller écrivent également de très bons articles dans ce sens. Une autre ligne de recherche importante émane de personnes comme Radhika Gorur qui écrit sur les dangers de la normalisation et sur la manière dont elle pourrait finalement détruire la diversité nécessaire à l’adaptation et à l’innovation futures dans l’éducation. Nous voulons donc, une fois de plus, que nos recherches fassent disparaître la croyance selon laquelle les recherches universitaires prouvent d’une manière ou d’une autre le lien entre le PISA et le PIB, et que les décideurs politiques perçoivent beaucoup plus clairement tous ces avertissements. Et si vous me permettez de passer rapidement à la deuxième dimension du concret, ce qui se passe maintenant, comme beaucoup d’auditeurs le savent aussi, c’est que le monde est, le monde de l’éducation, où le développement parle plus globalement des objectifs de l’après 2015. Fondamentalement, ce qui suit les objectifs du Millénaire pour le développement que nous allons dans les années 1990. Et en matière d’éducation, le quatrième objectif de développement durable est celui qui concerne l’éducation, il fixe des objectifs au niveau mondial pour améliorer l’apprentissage d’ici 2030. Et l’une des choses regrettables que nous avons remarquées dans ces discussions, c’est qu’il semble que la discussion imite l’OCDE et la Banque mondiale ; c’est-à-dire que nous voyons l’UNESCO et d’autres agences se référer explicitement aux études de Hanushek et Woessmann pour défendre les raisons pour lesquelles les évaluations de type PISA sont le meilleur moyen d’atteindre le quatrième objectif de développement durable. Ainsi, par rapport aux discussions autour de l’EPT, au début des années 1990, la discussion autour du quatrième objectif de développement durable semble prendre cette affirmation de capital de connaissances comme une vérité, une vérité académique.

Et nous nous sommes inquiétés de ce que cela mette le monde entier sur la voie de la mise en œuvre de tests de type PISA. Et, bien sûr, le changement de programme qui s’ensuit. Je ne veux pas, vous savez, un peu trop exagérer. Mais nous craignons qu’il n’y ait pas vraiment de preuves à cet égard et qu’il s’agisse d’exercices très coûteux qui, en fin de compte, ne contribueront que très peu à améliorer l’éducation. Nous espérons donc, une fois encore, que notre étude donnera aux décideurs politiques le type de base de recherche universitaire qui leur permettra de résister aux avancées de l’OCDE et de la Banque mondiale.

Will Brehm:  31:59
Avez-vous fait l’expérience d’un recul par rapport à certaines des conclusions parce que, de toute évidence, vous remettez en question certaines des idées reçues par la Banque mondiale, par l’OCDE, par des entreprises privées, comme vous l’avez dit, par Pearson et par ETS, le Service d’évaluation de l’éducation, qui produit toute une série de tests. On pourrait donc supposer que vos recommandations négatives qui découlent de vos conclusions pourraient finalement créer une réaction de rétraction de la part de ceux dont les intérêts sont contestés.

Jeremy Rappleye:  32:30
Oui, je crois que nous aimerions vivement avoir un retour en arrière, parce que le retour en arrière implique un engagement explicite. Encore une fois, nos observations ne sont pas nouvelles, à savoir qu’il n’y a pas de lien entre les résultats scolaires et la croissance du PIB. Ces affirmations sont très, très anciennes, cette idée est en réalité très ancienne. Mais ce qui se passe, c’est qu’à chaque vague de données qui sortent de ce genre de combat de chiens dont je parlais, cela va des enfants qui se lancent des pierres depuis différents arbres jusqu’aux ballons à air chaud en passant par les avions à réaction, et cela ne cesse de croître. Il n’y a pas de véritable engagement avec les réalités du terrain qui réfuterait tout cela. Donc, si nous obtenions un retour en arrière, nous l’accueillerions avec plaisir. Nous aimerions voir les preuves parce que notre décision n’est pas prise. C’est tout à fait possible. Je veux dire qu’il n’y a pas de certitudes, et il serait merveilleux de voir une discussion plus élaborée autour de ces idées. Nos résultats sont donc concluants. Mais dans le sens où avec cet ensemble de données, ils réfutent de manière concluante une hypothèse ou une affirmation particulière, mais ils ne sont pas concluants en termes de fin d’apprentissage. Nous pouvons toujours en comprendre davantage sur la relation complexe entre la société, l’économie, la culture et ce genre de choses. Nous serions donc très heureux de pouvoir élaborer sur ce point.

Will Brehm:  34:00
J’espère vraiment que vous pourrez ouvrir cette porte à un engagement beaucoup plus profond pour aborder certaines de ces grandes questions que vous avez évidemment à l’esprit, mais HikaruKomatsu et Jeremy Rappleye, merci beaucoup d’avoir rejoint Fresh Ed. C’était vraiment un plaisir de vous parler aujourd’hui.

Hikaru Komatsu:  34:15
Merci de nous recevoir. J’ai vraiment apprécié.

Jeremy Rappleye:  34:18
Merci infiniment, Will. Continuez votre excellent travail. Nous apprécions tous le dur labeur que vous accomplissez au nom des chercheurs en éducation et des praticiens de l’éducation du monde entier.

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Today’s topic: the dreaded subject of tests.

I hated tests growing up. They made me feel physically ill.

But we aren’t going to look at the types of tests I disliked so much, those given by a teacher to her or his students. We aren’t even going to look at standardized tests administered across one country.

Instead, today’s show focuses on tests that are administered around the world. We call these types of tests international large-scale assessments. One of the most popular today is called PISA — the Programme for International Student Assessment. PISA tests 15-year-old’s scholastic performance on mathematics, science, and reading. The latest test, in 2015, was administered in 72 countries.

Think for a moment of how complex it must be to create, administer, and interpret PISA across 72 countries. The test must be reliable in different contexts; it must successfully recruit national government officials to help collect data; and it must rely on a small army of statisticians to discern what the test results actually mean. For many, the benefit of a test like PISA is that it allows governments to make evidence based policy. After learning where its students sit globally, education officials from one country can enact new and hopefully better policies to improve student learning.

Sounds good, right?

But that’s the whole story. Cross-national assessments have produced countless controversies — some within specific countries and others in the academic literature.

With me today is Gustavo Fischman. He’s been studying this subject for some time. In November 2016, he helped organize a symposium at Arizona State University looking at these so-called “global learning metrics.” You might remember a few FreshEd podcasts on the subject. He has also recently co-written a working paper for the Open Society Foundation on the topic, which will be released later this year.

Gustavo Fischman is a professor of educational policy and director of edXchange the knowledge mobilization initiative at the Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College at Arizona State University.


Citation: Fischman, Gustavo, interview with Will Brehm, FreshEd, 70, podcast audio, April 24, 2017.

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