The responsibilised consumer: neoliberalism and English higher education policy

MORRISON, Andrew (2017). The responsibilised consumer: neoliberalism and English higher education policy. Cultural Studies - Critical Methodologies, 17 (3), 197-204.

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Focusing primarily upon the higher education policies of the Coalition government of 2010-15, this paper considers the function of higher education in England in the responsibilisation of young people as consumers of a higher education 'product'. The article elaborates a two-part theoretical framework which draws upon Gramsci and Foucault. This framework is then applied to analyse the 2011 white paper, Students at the Heart of the System. This is examined as an example of a technology of neoliberal governance which works at the creation and maintenance of a community of self-reliant consumer-citizens. Significant policy developments subsequent to the 2011 paper are also discussed. The article concludes with discussion of three issues: I will reflect upon the value of the theoretical framework employed within the study; future policy directions in the higher education sector under the new Conservative administration of 2015 will be considered; I will consider the potential for productive spaces of resistance against the ever-tightening constrictions of educational commercialisation and commoditisation.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Higher Education; Neoliberalism; Responsibilisation
Research Institute, Centre or Group - Does NOT include content added after October 2018: Sheffield Institute of Education
Identification Number:
Page Range: 197-204
Depositing User: Andrew Morrison
Date Deposited: 26 Apr 2016 16:03
Last Modified: 18 Mar 2021 07:00

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