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Market Orientation of the Swedish School from an Institutional Perspective: How does the School Acquire the Characteristics of a Company?
University West, Department of Social and Behavioural Studies, Division for Educational Science and Languages.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-1855-4461
2008 (English)In: Uddevalla Symposium 2008: Spatial Dispersed Production and Network Governance : Revised papers presented at the 11th Uddevalla Symposium, 15-17 May, 2008, Kyoto, Japan  / [ed] Iréne Bernhard, Trollhättan: University West , 2008, p. 571-586Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

In the beginning of the 1990´s the Swedish public school changed from a management by rules to a management by objectives and results. Thereby the school has to cope with a market oriented system, acting like a company where the pupils and their parents are looked upon as the clients of the school. As a consequence of that the school management is facing a new position. The role of the headmaster has become more multifaceted than before. The headmaster is expected to exercise the public authority, promoting the teachers in their pedagogical skills and also be a business manager. The reorganisation of the school has caused problems among the teachers, the pupils as well as the headmasters. In this article I try to clarify the reasons why the transition to a market oriented system is especially problematic in the school sector. From a theoretical perspective I discuss the school from its former institutional form; as part of the public managed administration, and its present institutional form; a mixture of the previous form and a business company. Turning to a new kind of management requires an understanding of a variety of norms. The implication of this discussion clarifies what kind of possibilities and obstacles the school faces when turning to a market oriented system. One such obstacle is that the school is not used to act independently, to create its own distinct character and demonstrate its self image. I therefore give an example of how to create the self image of an organisation. The example is taken from research on the Study Associations belonging to the free organisations, the Liberal Adult Education (in Swedish folkbildningen). Like a business company the Study Associations are used to emphasize their ideas by their self image. When adapting to the new conditions of the market the Study Associations were eager to keep their character. The analytic model used to analyse the self images of the Study Associations is in this article proposed to be used as a tool for creating a self image of the school unit. The tool is thought of to improve the communication in both an internal and an external perspective of the school. It aims to infuse the teaching, the routines and the attitudes of the staff and the pupils with meaning based on norms and values of the school.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Trollhättan: University West , 2008. p. 571-586
Series
Research reports / University West, ISSN 1653-7831 ; 2008:03
Keywords [en]
New Public Management, reorganisation of the school, market orientation, self image, identity, school culture, headmaster, value-based management, leadership
National Category
Business Administration
Research subject
SOCIAL SCIENCE, Educational science
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hv:diva-2924OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hv-2924DiVA, id: diva2:379176
Conference
The 11th Uddevalla Symposium, 15-17 May 2008, Kyoto, Japan
Available from: 2010-12-17 Created: 2010-12-14 Last updated: 2015-03-18Bibliographically approved

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Petersen, Ann-Louise

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