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The field of Global Studies has a similar historical trajectory as the field of comparative education. Both fields in the American context were formalized in the 1950s during the Cold War and expanded in the 1980s when scholars “began to take note of the rapidly increasing transnational flows of people, ideas, and products, and the social, political, economic, and cultural consequences of these trends.” Both also lack a clear disciplinary home. Scholars bring myriad academic perspectives to each field, from economics to sociology and from history to anthropology.

So today we explore global studies in depth in an effort for mutual learning.

With me today is a leading scholar of global studies, Hilary Kahn. Hilary Kahn is the assistant dean for international education and global initiatives and director of the Center for the Study of Global Change in the School of Global and International Studies at Indiana University. She is a co-director of the Framing the Global project, which is trying to “develop and disseminate new knowledge, approaches, and methods in the field of global research.” She co-edited a book entitled Framing the Global: Entry points for research that I think could be valuable to comparative education researchers.

Citation: Kahn, Hillary, interview with Will Brehm, FreshEd, 65, podcast audio, March 20, 2017. https://www.freshedpodcast.com/hilarykahn/

Transcript, translation, and resources: Read more

Today: Case Studies. My guests: Fran Vavrus and Lesley Bartlett . They have a new co-written book entitled Rethinking Case Study Research: A Comparative Approach, which will be published by Routledge later this year.

Fran and Lesley contend that the recent conceptual shifts in the social sciences, some of which have been discussed by previous guests on this show, demand that case studies re-configure their approach towards culture, context, space, place, and comparison.

Fran Vavrus is a professor in the college of education and human development at the University of Minnesota.

Lesley Bartlett is a professor in the School of Education at the University of Wisconsin – Madison.

They have written an exclusive summary of their forthcoming book, Rethinking Case Study Research: A Comparative Approach, for FreshEd listeners, which can be downloaded here.

 

Educational transfer or policy borrowing is one of the major topics in comparative education. When I spoke with Rattana Lao in episode 7 of FreshEd, we discussed the ways in which a culture of borrowing has emerged in Thailand’s educational quality assurance system.

On today’s show, I continue the conversation on educational transfer and policy borrowing with Jason Beech, a professor in the School of Education at the University of San Andrés in Buenos Aires.  Jason critiques the very terms of educational transfer, suggesting the language we use is limited. Why, he asks, is it that the focus is always on policy and not other aspects of education? And has the very notion of globalization lost its cutting edge in terms of theory and method?

Instead of using grand narratives of domination or resistance, Jason uses relational notions of space, which I have talked about on other shows with Marianne Larsen and Jane Kenway. New spatial thinking provides Jason a language to think through new theoretical approaches to educational transfer. In an article co-written in 2015 and published in the journal Globalization, Societies, and Education, Jason uses the case of the one laptop per child scheme in Argentina and actor-network theory to show how material and non-material actors create educational space and new vocabularies for educational transfer.

Today’s topic is space in educational research.

My guest is Marianne Larsen, an Associate Professor at the Faculty of Education, University of Western Ontario. Dr. Larsen’s recent research focuses on the overall processes and effects of the internationalization of higher education. She has been researching how internationalization policies are taken up ‘on-the-ground’, as well as the role of higher education leaders in advancing internationalization agendas.

Her most recent book, Internationalizing Higher Education: An Analysis through Spatial, Mobility and Network Theories builds upon her work to advance the use of new spatial and mobilities theories in comparative education research.

I spoke with Dr. Larsen in 2016 about how she and her colleague Jason Beech theorize the concept of educational space not as an object of study but as a set of relations between individuals and groups. Their articles on new spatial thinking can be found in the 2014 Spring issue of European Education and the May 2014 issue of Comparative Education Review.

[Updated and re-aired on July 30, 2018. Originally aired on July 21, 2016]