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2011 - 55th Annual Conference of the Comparative and International Education Society Words: 244 words || 
1. Pons, Xavier. and van Zanten, Agn├Ęs. "New forms of knowledge for increasing accountability? The example of evaluation in the education sector in France" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the 55th Annual Conference of the Comparative and International Education Society, Fairmont Le Reine Elizabeth, Montreal, Quebec, Canada, <Not Available>. 2019-08-19 <>
Publication Type: Panel Paper
Abstract: In the policy literature, one of the main hypotheses is that the introduction of new forms of accountability in educational systems goes along with the production of new forms of knowledge about the outcomes of the action of individual actors and institutions. This paper will argue that, to a large extent, this is not verified in the case of France.

In order to do so, it will use a neo-institutionalist and cognitive framework. It will focus on the analysis of institutional and cognitive routines among the traditional actors in charge of the evaluation of educational policies at the national level in France (the inspectorate and the statisticians of the ministry), before and after the introduction of evaluation as an accountability tool.

After concluding that new accountability procedures have brought only small changes on the ways that these two groups work, various types of explanations will be provided by focusing on the institutional and cognitive routines of politicians and high-level officials in charge of educational policy-making, of researchers and knowledge-producers and of the subjects of evaluation, that is local educational authorities, principals and teachers.

The empirical material for this analysis is drawn mainly from three qualitative studies based on interviews and on the analysis of scientific, institutional and professional literature that have focused on policy elaboration and reception, on reconstructing the social and cognitive network of actors involved in evaluation in France and on the analysis of the routines and forms of competition between these actors.

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