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From autonomy to quality management: NPM impacts on school governance in Switzerland

Hangartner, Judith; Svaton, Carla Jana (2013). From autonomy to quality management: NPM impacts on school governance in Switzerland. Journal of Educational Administration and History, 45 (4), pp. 354-369.

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This article reviews the impact of discourses on ‘New Public Management’ (NPM) on compulsory schooling in Switzerland during the last two decades and traces its implementation in the Canton of Bern. The analysis suggests that while NPM reformers initially promoted increased school autonomy, the introduction of market elements and school choice, the focus subsequently shifted to a concern with school management, supervision and accountability. NPM-guided reforms led to the introduction of headteachers and quality management procedures in a majority of cantons. Ethnographic research in the Canton of Bern shows that NPM-influenced decentralisation policy results in a growing standardisation of schools’ conditions and processes. Additionally, lay school boards as traditional, democratically legitimised bodies of local supervision are coming under threat.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

PHBern Contributor:

Hangartner, Judith, Svaton, Carla Jana


[10 s 01 02] Schul-Praxis unter den Bedingungen von "Evaluationsbasierter Steuerung"




Jessica Brunner

Date Deposited:

19 Sep 2022 16:41

Last Modified:

02 Sep 2023 04:20

Uncontrolled Keywords:

compulsory schooling, New Public Management, governance, school boards




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