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January 22, 2008



“so we will edit this into short podcasts that will be available soon”
Which version of ‘soon’ are you using? Maybe you need to update it?

noel douglas

As Alan Livingston also said we need to engage with public policy in regards to Education in response to my point from the floor, I thought I'd recommend this book to anyone interested in what is driving current education policy, it's very illuminating…

"Stephen Ball provides the intellectual resources for understanding how education policy is produced, what it seeks to do and what its effects are. Theoretically and empirically adroit, it is essential reading for all those needing to understand education policy and politics. Bob Lingard, Andrew Bell Professor of Education, The University of Edinburgh"

The education debate: Policy and Politics in the Twenty-First Century (Policy and Politics in the Twenty-first Century Series) (Paperback)
by Stephen J. Ball


noel douglas

Just a small addition as I was quoted in the description of the event.

The key point I was trying to make from the floor (perhaps badly) was that any discussion of education whether design or any other kind must acknowledge the damage market principles are having on education, as this is the (unfortunate) framework within which we all currently operate. The points about depression, student debt, students working (minimum wage) jobs whilst trying to study, continual cuts, impossible workloads for staff and ridiculous 'competition' between institutions (where everyone is a 'centre of excellence' or 'world-class') is that this undermines not only a serious education and getting at the truth of our troulbed global situation and what role design may play in this, but it also works against bringing disciplines together and encourages the fragmentation of knowledge, as the market demands more and more 'employable' degree subjects that only treat students (or customers to use the lingo) as the next generation of workers who only need to 'know' what the market requires.

A truly radical education system would not only be free to anyone who wanted it but would bring together artists and designers to work with programmers, scientists and engineers, imagine what this could do in terms of solving problems, not only in terms of their technicality but also in terms of aesthetics.


Was there a transcript/recording made? It would be useful in pulling in commentary from those (like myself) that could not make it, but nonetheless are interested in the issues. It would also function as an archive of thoughts/ideas/dialogue/arguments which can referenced, developed and expanded upon.

Jay Rutherford

Great forum, too short. I wonder whether there is a need for a full, say two-day, conference on these issues. I felt that several threads just managed to get rolling and had to be cut short to go on to the next topic. Alan Livingston did a wonderful job of keeping things on track, using the brief time alloted to cover a lot of ground. A number of members of the audience (including teachers, students, and practicing designers) had a good chance to air their views, but no-one was allowed to go off on a long-winded tangent.
I'm not sure what the correct venue might be, or under whose aegis it should be run (ATypI, TypeCon, other professional or educational groups?). The topic is most definitely international; the same issues come up in Germany, Canada, the UK, Syria, India, wherever design is taught and practiced.

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