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    In the name of the nation : PISA and federalism in Australia and Canada

    Sellar, Sam, Lingard, Bob and Sant Obiols, Edda ORCID logoORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-7907-5907 (2022) In the name of the nation : PISA and federalism in Australia and Canada. In: World Yearbook of Education 2022: Education, Schooling and the Global Universalization of Banal Nationalism. World Yearbook of Education . Routledge, pp. 153-168. ISBN 9780367684921 (hardback); 9781003137801 (ebook)

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    This chapter examines the role of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development’s (OECD) Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) in constituting a national imaginary of schooling in federal states. We argue that PISA both exacerbates and helps to solve what Arjun Appadurai described as the increasingly embattled relationship between nation (culture, demography) and state (politics, policy) inside nation-states. States seek to manage the deterritorializing desires produced by global flows of technology, media and money, and the loss of some economic sovereignty, by reterritorializing desire onto new ideas of nationhood as an expression of cultural sovereignty. PISA, as a surrogate measure of the quality of potential human capital, contributes to both processes simultaneously by promoting human capital and magnet economy logics, while helping to constitute new ideas about national projects of education. Our analysis focuses on two federal states – Canada and Australia – that manifest different forms of education federalism. Both systems have pursued an Anglo-American model of performance-based accountability that has been taken up in the OECD’s education work and which has been used to refashion national education systems as PISA participation is refracted by the different structures and functioning of federal states.

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