Thinking more deeply about networks in education


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Type of work: Article (academic)


Education | Network Theory


In education, initiatives to restructure and reculture schools through their involvement in intra- and inter-institutional networks have grown in number in recent years. Networks of teachers and schools (often linked to institutions outside education) are becoming a key focus of change efforts promoted by professionals and policymakers. However, in current research, writing and policymaking, the use of the network concept has been generally vague, normative and mostly instrumental. This paper develops a discussion of network concepts and proposes more systematic, less normative ways of addressing and researching network issues in education. It outlines a set of key dimensions of intra- and inter-organizational networks and makes a case for more a comprehensive research approach to these phenomena.