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Wood, David
Languages: English
Types: Doctoral thesis
Subjects: LB1603, NX, LB1501
This thesis offers the first and most comprehensive re-evaluation of the UK\ud government’s Creative Partnerships education policy (2002-11) by drawing\ud together my seven contemporaneous evaluation reports about Creative\ud Partnerships and applying a retrospective and reflexive commentary to them.\ud The term of reference explicitly named or implied in all seven evaluation briefs\ud was to measure the ‘impact,’ of the policy. The principal contribution to new\ud understanding in the thesis is the deconstruction and conceptual analysis of\ud impact in the context of Creative Partnerships, drawing on hermeneutics, critical\ud linguistics and policy analysis (Ozga, 2000; Fairclough, 1989). This clarifies and\ud illustrates the ways in which impact was interpreted by those enacting Creative\ud Partnerships, and proposes a fuller understanding of the term. I identify two\ud contrasting approaches to impact adopted by Creative Partnerships’ national\ud leadership: the politically motivated public relations approach and the substantive\ud approach. I argue that the former approach was driven by the zeitgeist of its time:\ud the political party in power (Ward, 2010; Buckingham and Jones, 2001), the\ud recession after 2010 and the contemporary preference for evidence-based\ud practice (Hargreaves, 2007). Research into ‘logical frameworks’ (Harley, 2005;\ud Rosenthal, 2000) reveals them to be an essential corollary to the latter,\ud substantive approach and shows how the lack of a full logical framework for\ud planning and evaluating Creative Partnerships, impoverished the extent to which\ud its impact was recognised and monitored by those enacting the policy.\ud The thesis shows how the imperatives of the political cycle demanded evidence\ud of the policy’s impact well before more valid and reliable longitudinal impact\ud studies could, in principle, be completed. As a possible solution to this\ud conundrum, the thesis argues that my ‘predictive impact model’ offered plausible\ud predictions about the legacy of Creative Partnerships (Wood and Whitehead,\ud 2012). I suggest that this could be further investigated and applied to similar\ud education policies.
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    • 20 Nov 2012
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