Introduction: Working and Learning in Times of Uncertainty

Christian Helms Jørgensen, Sandra Bohlinger, Ulrika Haake, Hanna Toiviainen, Andreas Wallo

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    Abstract

    Research on adult, professional and vocational education in a global world is timely (Farrell & Fenwick, 2007). Globalisation and economic crises are the trends that most dramatically transform the social, political, economic and ecological spheres of our time and directly affect the everyday life of local communities and workplaces. Current challenges set compelling requirements for the working and learning of the members of communities. Over the past decades of adult, professional and vocational education research, researchers have increasingly addressed globalisation and its political, value-based and ethical underpinnings. Work-related learning and the workplace as an arena of learning and education is, in Fenwick’s (2001) terms, a highly political space, in which the requirements of flexibility, specialisation, privatisation, and globalisation “change the nature and environment of work and the desires of workers” (ibid., p. 5). This book contributes to the current discussion on the global developments of working and learning in the fields of adult, professional and vocational education in Europe. These developments are full of paradoxes and contradictions, as Bratton et al. (2008) point out in their critical examination of workplace learning in advanced capitalist economies. It is therefore not an easy task to envision the future work and the learning options it will eventually offer to workers. We are living in times of uncertainty regarding the adult educational challenges on all societal levels of working and learning (Alheit, 2002/2004).
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationWorking and Learning in Times of Uncertainty : Challenges to Adult, Professional and Vocational Education
    EditorsSandra Bohlinger, Ulrika Haake, Christian Helms Jørgensen, Hanna Toiviainen, Andreas Wallo
    Number of pages14
    Place of PublicationRotterdam
    PublisherBrill | Sense
    Publication date25 Aug 2015
    Pages1-14
    Chapter1
    ISBN (Print)978-94-6300-242-4, 978-94-6300-243-1
    ISBN (Electronic)978-94-6300-244-8
    Publication statusPublished - 25 Aug 2015
    SeriesResearch on the Education and Learning of Adults
    Volume4

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