Vera Gorodski Centeno contributed a chapter entitled “The Birth of the OECD’s Education Policy Area” to the recently published book “The OECD’s Historical Rise in Education. The Formation of a Global Governing Complex“ edited by C. Ydesen.
The chapter provides an historical account of the OECD’s official involvement in education policy, and offers an analysis of the OECD’s quick emergence as a policy actor in the field. It explains how education moved from a bordering position in the OECD to become the focus of a specialised autonomous centre (CERI) and of a policy committee. Drawing on a systematic analysis of unpublished internal documents, it traces what happened within the organisation before and after the creation of the CERI. It shows that the OECD was envisaged from the onset as a global organization – to use today’s vernacular. This institutional nature enabled it to quickly emerge as a policy actor in education, once the right moment arrived. The study draws inspiration from Peter Hall’s theory of policy changes, as to explain how CERI’s creation triggered a process of change, which led the OECD to officially started to work on issues of education policy.