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Shadow Elite of Education Reforms: The Construction of Technocratic Regimes in Russia and the United States

October 31 @ 12:00 pm

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In the context of global neoliberalism, reengineering of the state has produced new forms of governance where policy formation increasingly proceeds outside of the public eye. As policy entrepreneurs use their network resources to advance libertarian market-based agendas, growing state authoritarianism or intensifying levels of centralization, standardization, and privatization of education ensue. Drawing on Wedel’s concept of “shadow elite,” Aydarova will present a critical analysis of a neoconservative redesign of the educational system in Russia and “science of reading” reforms in the United States. Although these processes follow different paths, the underlying logic of technocratic principles that inform these reforms sets the stage for perpetuating educational inequities. Aydarova will discuss how policymaking in the shadows diminishes the democratic potential of educational institutions.

Dr. Elena Aydarova is an Associate Professor at Auburn University. Dr. Aydarova’s interdisciplinary scholarship lies at the intersections of comparative and international education, educational policy, as well as anthropology of education. Rooted in critical theories, her research focuses on technocratic transformations in education, the involvement of intermediary organizations in educational reforms, and educators’ policy advocacy. She is a recipient of an NAED/Spencer Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowship, an American Fellowship from the American Association of University Women, and the Concha Delgado Gaitan Presidential Fellowship from the Council of Anthropology and Education.


October 31
12:00 pm