Lange, B. & Alexiadou, N. (2007)

New Forms of European Union Governance in the Education Sector? A Preliminary Analysis of the Open Method of Coordination

BETTINA LANGE & NAFSIKA ALEXIADOU Keele University, United Kingdom


This article critically explores how a new form of European Union (EU) governance the open method of coordination (OMC) impinges on education policies. The first part discusses three key characteristics of the OMC, in particular its flexibility, reflexivity and reliance on the techniques of new public management. It also outlines briefly why the OMC is being applied to EU education policy. The second and main part of the article develops a critical analysis of the OMC in education by questioning to what extent it can be considered as a new form of EU governance and with what vision of Social Europe it is associated. Most importantly, the second part argues that there may be significant potential for the politicization of mutual policy learning in the context of OMC education measures.

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