New article titled “Externalisations in the Portuguese parliament: analysing power struggles and (de-)legitimation with Multiple Streams Approach” by EduKnow members Íris Santos and Jaakko Kauko published in the Journal of Education Policy.
The article analyses plenary debates on education policy in the Portuguese parliament with the aim of understanding the roles of external references to international organisations, their instruments, and associated countries. The authors understand the agenda-setting process through political, problem, and policy streams as described by the Multiple Streams Approach. The analysis shows that external references play a key role in the three streams as sources of authority used by policymakers in the attempt to open new policy windows and couple the three streams, resulting in policy change. The authors demonstrate that while international influences certainly occurred, Portuguese parliamentary policymakers strategically instrumentalised external references to feed arguments where problems were framed in certain ways, and policy solutions were aligned with each party’s ideological and political agenda. This intensifies the highly conflictual dynamic that characterises the Portuguese political system. External references are use with the goal of managing conflict between the different political forces and eventually enable policy reform.
The article is open access.