Research News

New paper from UW-Madison’s Otting examines education reform in Kosovo

March 29, 2018

UW-Madison’s Jennifer Otting is the author of a new study examining education reform in Kosovo that was published in the journal, Compare: Journal of Comparative & International Education.

Otting is a Ph.D. student with the School of Education’s Department of Educational Policy Studies. Her paper is titled, “Rendering technical the responsible citizen: implementing citizenship education reform in Kosovo." This work is a product of her master’s thesis.

According to the paper’s abstract: “In the last 20 years, there has been a growing preoccupation with fragile contexts. International development and diplomatic communities have focused on implementing Western-oriented education policies centered on democratization efforts to transform fragile contexts. In order to understand what happens when education reform policies are enmeshed with the world they are designed to change."

The abstract continues: “This project focuses on the educational actors who create and take up citizenship education in Kosovo. Using ethnographic methods, the research examines how educational actors are making sense of the citizenship education competency within the economic, political and social conditions framing Kosovo as a fragile state. This article highlights how the curriculum was rendered technical in the implementation process producing the unintended consequence of perpetuating conditions that have justified Kosovo’s categorization as a fragile state. This research raises important questions about the implementation of education reform policies used as a panacea to address state fragility.”