Foucault News

News and resources on French thinker Michel Foucault (1926-1984)

Palma Carvajal, J.F. Advocacy NGOs and the neoliberal manufacture of the street voice (2021) Journal of Education Policy.

DOI: 10.1080/02680939.2021.1875266

In the previous decades there has been an unprecedented proliferation of Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) working in different policy fields. In hand with this process of ‘NGOisation’, there has been a growing academic debate regarding the role of NGOs in terms of their influence promoting or resisting the expansion of neoliberalism. For some, NGOs are organisations that have become domesticated by neoliberalism, aiding the spread of its influence around the world; while for others, there are still some NGOs that remain critical and attempt to challenge neoliberalism. Engaging with this debate, this article critically explores the role of two advocacy NGOs involved in processes of education policymaking during the recent education reforms carried out in Chile. Drawing on Foucault’s theoretical work on governmentality, the research investigates the extent to which these NGOs contest Chilean neoliberalism or conversely, as subjects of governmentality, serve to protect and extend its hegemony. Finally, the article argues that NGOs can use their image as representatives of civil society to pacify demands for radical changes and allow the government to control the social sphere from a distance. © 2021 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.

Author Keywords
civil society; governmentality; neoliberalism; NGOs; policymaking

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