Working Paper No. 1228

“Post-Truth” Schooling and Marketized Education: Explaining the Decline in Sweden’s School Quality

Published: September 10, 2018Pages: 50Keywords: For-profit schools; Marketized education; School choice; Social constructivism; Voucher systemJEL-codes: H42; H44; H75; I22; I28; L88

“Post-Truth” Schooling and Marketized Education: Explaining the Decline in Sweden’s School Quality Magnus Henrekson and Johan Wennström


The Swedish school system suffers from profound problems with teacher recruitment and retention, knowledge decline, and grade inflation. Absenteeism is high, and psychiatric disorders have risen sharply among Swedish pupils in the last ten years.

In this pioneering analysis of the consequences of combining institutionalized social constructivism with extensive marketization of education, we suggest that these problems regarding school quality are to no small extent a result of the Swedish school system’s unlikely combination of a postmodern view of truth and knowledge, the ensuing pedagogy of child-centered discovery, and market principles.

Our study adds to the findings from previous attempts to study the effects of social-constructivist pedagogy in nonmarket contexts and yields the implication that caution is necessary for countries, notably the U.S., that have a tradition of social-constructivist practices in their education systems and are considering implementing or expanding market-based school reforms.

Magnus Henrekson

Contact

Ph: +46 (0)8 665 4502
magnus.henrekson@ifn.se

Johan Wennström

Contact

Ph: +46 8 665 4581; +46 700 89 5865
johan.wennstrom@ifn.se

Interdisciplinary European Studies

Trust in the European Union in Challenging Times

2018-Trust-in-the-European-Union-by-Oxelheim.jpg

This is the first book in the Interdisciplinary European Studies collection. This volume provides an interdisciplinary perspective on trust in the EU from the vantage point of political science, law and economics. Lars Oxelheim, Lund University and affiliated to IFN, is one of the authors.

Events

Seminars organized by IFN

 

To present ongoing research informal brown-bag seminars are held on Mondays at 11:30 am. This is an opportunity for IFN researchers to test ideas and results.

Academically oriented seminars are most of the time held on Wednesdays at 10 am. At these events researchers from IFN and other institutions present their research.

In addition, IFN organizes seminars open to the public. Topics for these are derived from the IFN research.

Research Institute of Industrial Economics, Grevgatan 34 - 2 fl, Box 55665, SE-102 15 Stockholm, Sweden | Phone: +46-(0)8-665 45 00 | info@ifn.se