Privatisation and Commercialisation in Public Education asks how publicness is being redefined through the restructuring of nominally public school systems. Over the past few decades, governments have engineered a wave of reforms in their public systems opening them to privatisation and commercialisation. In public education systems competition, choice and autonomy have become entrenched vectors of these reforms.

This edited collection carefully examines the difference between privatisation and commercialisation and traces the varying effects privatised and commercialised policy reforms have had in different educational contexts. Many countries have approached the thorny issues of school choice and school autonomy in different ways, and this book investigates the impact of these agendas across the USA, UK, Australia, New Zealand, parts of Europe, sub-Saharan Africa and India. This book brings together contemporary, international perspectives from high-profile policy academics on both privatisation and commercialisation in public education systems under the provocation of how the ‘public’ nature of schooling is changing.

This is essential reading for those interested in the idea that current education policy reforms are reshaping what might be considered core educational practices in public schooling.

chapter |18 pages


The ‘publicness’ of schooling

part I|79 pages


chapter 1|15 pages

What ‘good’ is schooling?

The new edu-​philanthropies and education reform

chapter 3|14 pages

Mobilising neoliberal discourse and fostering new subjectivities

The eclectic role of philanthropy in contemporary global education governance

chapter 5|16 pages

Hybrid models of delivery

State mandated public-​private partnerships in India

part III|52 pages


chapter 10|13 pages

Nationhood, sex and the family

Neoconservatism and the moral dilemmas of privatisation in schooling

chapter 11|14 pages

Buying and selling the public school in the market

The politics of space and boundary crossings for urban school choosers

chapter 12|14 pages

Explaining publicness

A typology for understanding the provision of schooling in contemporary times

chapter |9 pages


Beyond publicness? Key questions and implications