Education and Post-Democracy

CAGLIARI, 6-7-8 JUNE 2019


  1. Politics, Civicness and Citizenship A.1. – A.2. – A.3. – A.3. – A.4. – A.5. – A.6. – A.7. – A.8. – A.9. – A.10. – A.11. – A.12.
  2. Diversity, Inclusion and Integration B.1. – B.2. – B.3. – B.4. – B.5. – B.6. – B.7. – B.8. – B.9. – B.10. – B.11. – B.12. – B.13. – B.14. – B.16. – B.17. – B.18.
  3. Neoliberalism and Education C.1. – C.2. – C.3. – C.4. – C.5.
  4. Teaching, Learning and Situated Practices D.1. – D.2. – D.3. – D.4. – D.5. – D.6. – D.7. – D.8. – D.9.
  5. Evaluation, Assessment and Education E.1. – E.2. – E.3. – E.4.
  6. Digitalization, Technology and Education F.1. – F.2. – F.3. – F.4.
  7. Education to/for/and Work G.1. – G.2. – G.3. – G.4. – G.5. – G.6.
  8. Professionals and Governance H.1. – H.2. – H.3. – H.4. – H.5.
  9. Education, Values and the Future I.1. – I.2. – I.3. – I.4. – I.5. – I.6. – I.7. – I.8.


A. Politics, Civicness and Citizenship

In the European space of liberal democracies, the post-economic crisis era has seen the appearance of populist movements, sometimes anti-democratic (to the extent that they deny citizenship rights, ethical-cultural differences, individual life choices), sometimes anti-scientific and anti-modernist. Those phenomena may erode democratic values and make the pluralistic context slip into the risky and ambiguous territories of post-democracy.
The democratization of basic and higher education stands as a solid defence against populist tendencies. Ethical-political socialization, acquisition and development of civic, social, citizenship and “character” skills may be a precious resource to hold democratic life on together. Democratic life, political participation and active citizenship needs to be rearticulated, reshaped and reinforced as fundamental educational pivots in our overchanging societies.

A.01. Character skills for democratic life
Andrea MACCARINI (University of Padova), Mariagrazia SANTAGATI (University ”Cattolica del Sacro Cuore”)

A.02. Training for democracy in populist time
Flaminia SACCÀ (University of Tuscia)

A.03. Democratising Higher Education: European Societies and Fragile Citizens(hip)
Nicola INGRAM (Sheffield Hallam University)

A.04. Financial and economic literacy: Actors and vulnerable groups
Valentina MOISO (University of Turin), Luca REFRIGERI (University of Molise), Emanuela E. RINALDI (University of Milan “Bicocca”)

A.05. Homo politicus: A “citizenship competence”? Roots and challenges of an open question
Luana SALVARANI (University of Parma), Andrea GIACOMANTONIO (University of Parma)

A.06. Citizenship beyond crisis: Experiences of democracy of thinking in the educational curricula
Marina SANTI (University of Padova)

A.07. A New Democratic School to limit the Post-democracy’s power
Teodora PEZZANO (University of Calabria), Giuseppe SPADAFORA (University of Calabria)

A.08. Global citizenship competencies and sustainable development education

A.09. Teaching to teach Social and Civic Competences in Italy
Gabriella AGRUSTI (LUMSA), Ira VANNINI (University of Bologna)

A.10. Ethical-political socialization
Fiorenzo PARZIALE (University of Rome “La Sapienza”), Sandra VATRELLA (University of Verona)

A.11. Economic and financial literacy and economical citizenship
Luca REFRIGERI (University of Molise)

A.13.  Local case studies in a global educational world
Salvatore PATERA (INVALSI), Daniela TORTI (University of Genoa)

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B. Diversity, Inclusion and Integration

Throughout the world, there have been continuous attempts to reform education at all levels. With different causes that are deeply rooted in history, society, and culture, inequalities are difficult to eradicate. Nonetheless, although difficult, education is vital to society’s movement forward. It should promote citizenship, identity, equality of opportunity and social inclusion, social cohesion as well as economic growth and employment. Unequal educational outcomes are attributed to several variables, including family of origin, gender, and social class. Achievement, earnings, health status, and political participation also contribute to educational inequality within Western countries as well as or deeper within other world countries. Diversity applies to a number of aspects of student identity, including race, ethnicity, class, gender, sexuality, age, and political and religious beliefs. Even if there are no official educational policies aiming at reproducing inequalities, teaching and learning practices are still unable to protect diversity and be effectively inclusive of student identities. This would imply giving thought to the attitudes, beliefs and expectations of students as individuals, and considering how these influences their approaches to learning and their interactions with teachers and with peers in the design of curricula, in the translation of curricula into day-to-day teaching and learning, and in the assessment of learning. Therefore, inequalities in educational opportunity, in educational access, in educational attainments are still the main dilemma nowadays. Several and differentiated tracks of research and conversation are packed into this stream in order to face the multidimensional dynamics of inclusion, integration, equal opportunities a diversity valorisation in both the educational spaces and knowledge society at large.

B.01.   Teachers and educational inequality
Carlo BARONE (Sciences Po), Gianluca ARGENTIN (University of Milan “Bicocca”), Moris TRIVENTI (University of Trento)

B.02.   Tackling intolerance and promoting citizenship at school: The state of the art of action research and program evaluation
Valeria FABRETTI (Bruno Kessler Foundation), Davide AZZOLINI (Bruno Kessler Foundation)

B.03.   Residential and Scholastic Segregation: Mechanisms of Inclusion and Exclusion
Federica SANTANGELO (University of Bologna), Debora MANTOVANI (University of Bologna)

B.04.   Is it still the same school? Diversity management and the oblivion of differences
Luca BOSSI (University of Turin), Stella PINNA PINTOR (University of Turin), Roberta RICUCCI (University of Turin)

B.05.   Femicide, Gender Inequality and Education
Claudia Gina HASSAN (University of Rome “Tor Vergata”)

B.06.   De-colonizing, de-territorializing and creolizing: A pedagogical challenge to post-democracy
Raffaele TUMINO (University of Macerata)

B.07.   Intercultural education, citizenship and democracy
Antimo Luigi FARRO (University of Rome “La Sapienza”), Simone MADDANU (Hillsborough Community College)

B.08.   Intercultural education and antiracism
Stefania LORENZINI (University of Bologna), Margherita CARDELLINI (University of Bologna)

B.09.   Education for integration: Migrations, reception and integration as factors of development and social transformation
Silvia ZANAZZI (University of Rome “La Sapienza”), Antje BARABASCH (Swiss Federal Institute of Vocational Education and Training)

B.10.   The modernisation processes and the development of competence in adulthood
Micaela CASTIGLIONI (University of Milan “Bicocca”)

B.11.   Educate within diversities: Teaching intervention anticipated by emotional caring
Rosa IAQUINTA (University of Basilicata)

B.12.   Religious education and its alternatives facing multiculturalism at schools in contemporary society: A transdisciplinary perspective
Luca BOSSI (University of Turin), Marta VILLA (University of Trento)

B.13.   Socio-cultural minorities, multi-cultural citizenship and ethnography at school
Stefania PONTRANDOLFO (University of Verona), Giorgia DECARLI (University of Trento)

B.14.   Processes and mechanisms of gender inequalities reproduction in school and training paths: Stereotypes, consequences and recent trends
Domenico CARBONE (University of Piemonte Orientale), Fatima FARINA (UniURB)

B.15.   Schools facing challenges of inclusion and social justice: The case of homo-transphobia and gender-biased discrimination
Chiara SITÀ (University of Verona), Beatriz SAN ROMAN (Universitat Autònoma of Barcelona)

B.16.   Service learning as an education for solidarity
Francesca BETTI (Proteo Fare Sapere), Patrizia LOTTI (INDIRE/Proteo Fare Sapere), Cristina CECCHINI (UniFI/LabCom)

B.17.   Interventions for schools at the edge: Smaller schools between innovation and inclusion
Manuela REPETTO (INDIRE), Giuseppina CANNELLA (INDIRE), Giuseppina Rita Jose MANGIONE (INDIRE)

B.18.  Empowerable schools: Paths for innovation
Giuseppina Rita Jose MANGIONE (INDIRE), Pamela GIORGI (INDIRE), Francesca PIZZIGONI (INDIRE)

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C. Neoliberalism and Education

Since 1973, with Chile’s Dictatorship as a neoliberal ‘laboratory’, it’s more than 45 years that the Global Education Reform Movement has transformed educational systems all around the world through a discourse rooted on epistemic and ideological hegemonies. A new ‘truth’ of the homo economicus as able to rationally and freely pursue its interest as self-entrepreneur is relentlessly spreading: the Human Capital paradigm then connects individualistic choices and personal skills to impose diverse educational tracks through a Life-Long-Learning investment. Thus, the restructuring of the Education State, thanks to policies of privatization, competition and high stakes accountability, has implied a new ethics challenging social justice ideals.

C.01.   [Special session] Geo-politics of educational policies and neoliberal worldwide hegemony: For a critical space in the sociology of education of Southern Europe and Latin America
Filippo PIRONE (Université de Bordeaux), Marco PITZALIS (University of Cagliari), Leopoldo CABRERA (Universidad de La Laguna), Leonor LIMA (Universidade do Minho)

C.02.   Lifelong education in times of economic ‘integrated surveillance’
Marcella MILANA (University of Verona)

C.03.   Youth educational transitions: Challenging or reinforcing the neoliberal rhetoric on individualism, aspiration and choice?
Aina TARABINI (Autonomous University of Barcelona)

C.04.   Neoliberalism and education
Luca SALMIERI (University of Rome “La Sapienza”)

C.05.   Education, Resilience, Democracy

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D. Teaching, Learning and Situated Practice

The massification of educational systems in Europe and worldwide, together with the increasing demand for their democratization, have profoundly challenged traditional teaching models: the lecture, the magister teacher and the specific spatial-temporal devices aimed at disciplining students according to the needs of a Fordist capitalist society and to the reproduction of class inequalities. Starting particularly from the Fifties in schools, and more recently in higher education, new teaching-learning configurations have been explored and developed: situated and participatory didactics aimed at involving students in a reflexive relationship with knowledge and social reality; new ways of hybridizing formal and informal learning; new pedagogies exploiting the possibilities inscribed in new medias and digital technologies. These practices, sometimes radically, revers theory and practices in order to develop student-centred learning processes. The thematic sessions within this stream explore the challenges, tensions, ambivalences and potentialities of pedagogies and didactics innovations involving school and university teachers, students, as well as their surrounding environments: the physical, architectural, material and technological spaces that constitute a crucial component of situated learning processes.

D.01.   The training of teachers for a democratic education of the citizen
Massimo BALDACCI (University of Urbino)

D.02.   University teaching as a practice of knowledge democratization
Leonardo PIROMALLI (University of Rome “La Sapienza”), Gioia POMPILI (University of Rome “La Sapienza”), Assunta VITERITTI (University of Rome “La Sapienza”)                                  

D.03.   Teaching at school: Epistemologies, methods and tools
Antonietta DE FEO (University of Rome “Roma Tre”), Anna Lisa TOTA (University of Rome “Roma Tre”)                    

D.04. Learning as a situated and socio-material interaction and the use of imaging technologies
Barbara PENTIMALLI (University of Rome “La Sapienza”), Andrea SPREAFICO (University of Rome “Roma Tre”)                           

D.05.   Informal learning as a site of encounter, self-construction and resistance
Inbar Michelzon DRORI (Bar-Ilan University), Berenice SCANDONE (Natcen Policy Research Centre)          

D.06.   Research and participatory teaching in university practices
Vincenza PELLEGRINO (University of Parma), Vincenzo SCHIRRIPA (LUMSA), Tiziana TARSIA (University of Messina)                          

D.08.   Convergence between formal and informal learning
Giovanni RAGONE (University of Rome “La Sapienza”)

D.09.   Transforming Schools between pedagogy and architecture: A democratic laboratory
Beate WEYLAND (University of Bolzano), Kuno PREY (University of Bolzano)

D.10.   School spaces: Accountability, leadership and participation
Marco DE BERNARDO (Istituto Comprensivo “Leonardo da Vinci”, San Felice Circeo), Paola MATTEI (University of Milan “Statale”), Elettra MORINI (INDIRE), Antonella TURCHI (INDIRE)

D.11.   Teaching in other words
Anna PAOLELLA (University of Molise), Barbara CAPRARA (Free University of Bozen)

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E. Evaluation, Assessment and Education

The relation between education systems and policy making changed in the last decades, consequently to three innovations sharing the common paradigm of evaluation, namely: the establishment of national/international large-scale testing, the diffusion of systems assessing schools’ and the raising interest for efficacy and cost-effectiveness of education interventions’. These innovations have been highly debated from different and controversial perspectives. The aim of the conference stream is to collect papers focused on actual uses of different forms evaluation, in order to overcome previous ideological oppositions, contributing to move the debate into a more pragmatic and fruitful phase.

E.1. Evidence informed policies in education: Opportunities and risks deriving from the wide-spreading of results coming from impact evaluation
Gianluca ARGENTIN (University of Milan “Bicocca”), Tiziano GEROSA (UnIMIb), Loris VERGOLINI (FBK-IRVAPP)

E.2. Inclusive education: What challenges for the evaluation of educational systems?
Donatella POLIANDRI (INVALSI/AIS Edu), Marco ROMITO (University of Milan “Bicocca”/AIS Edu)

E.3. [Special session] For a up to date evaluation notion
Anna Maria AJELLO (INVALSI/University of Rome “La Sapienza”), Nicoletta STAME (University of Rome “La Sapienza”)

E.4. Large scale assessment surveys between research uses and policy evaluation
Mariano PORCU (University of Cagliari), Giancarlo RAGOZINI (University of Naples “Federico II”)

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F. Digitalization, Technology and Education

How is digital technology changing education? Online schools and classes are becoming widely available; backpack of many high school and college students, instead of physicals textbooks, are now carrying iPads and various forms of devices connected to online; teachers now have more ability to personalize lessons, instructions, and projects for each group or student; by using devices and programs to distribute classwork and assignments, they can even personalize lessons and focus on the work of each student; increased opportunities and constraints for students to collaborate together from a variety of places becomes possible; free online classes called “MOOC’s” otherwise known as Massive Open Online Courses are becoming widely popular. Finally, a mounting set of variegated pressures to produce pedagogical innovation in teaching and learning is being addressed to teacher and school staffs. Even the governance of school system and school-daily life as a whole is undergoing a wide process of digitalization. But what does the increase in digital technology and approach mean for the current times? Although many advantages come with digitalized learning, there are also disadvantages that researchers, educators, academics and professionals are aware of, including and not limited to minimal to zero face-to-face interaction in the classroom and the lack of ability to work in person with study partners and teachers. Any conversation that does not include the potential dangers of the widespread use of technology would not be complete. Therefore, the stream focuses also on the interplay between learning theories and technologies. Both learning theories and tools are composed of multiple attributes, and they refer to many aspects and facets which render educational technology highly complex. Evolution in both theory and technology reflects no clear successive breaks or discrete developments, rather, waves of growth and accumulation. Evolutions in society and education have influenced the selection and use of learning theories and technologies; learning theories and technologies are situated in a somewhat vague conceptual field; learning theories and technologies are connected and intertwined by information processing and knowledge acquisition; educational technologies shifted learner support from program or instructor control toward more shared and learner control; and learning theories and findings represent a fuzzy mixture of principles and applications.


F.1. Formal, informal and social legitimation: Innovative capacity of educational agencies in the digital era
Paola Maria TORRIONI (University of Turin), Simona TIROCCHI (University of Turin), Federica CRETAZZO (University of Turin/University of Milan “Statale”)

F.2. Science and Technology in Post-Democratic Societies
Giuseppe TIPALDO (University of Turin), Emanuele TOSCANO (University “Guglielmo Marconi”), Assunta VITERITTI (University of Rome “La Sapienza”), Letizia ZAMPINO (University of Rome “La Sapienza”)

F.3. Researching Digitization in Education
Orazio GIANCOLA (University of Rome “La Sapienza”), Emiliano GRIMALDI (University of Naples “Federico II”), Marco ROMITO (University of Milan “Bicocca”)

F.4. Tools and Methods for Laboratory Teaching

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G. Education to/for/and Work

The stream discusses the way in which practices, actors and policies of the educational field interact with logics and stakes of the working world. The directions of the debate are various. On the one hand, there are questions about the autonomy of the school field with respect to the demands of the economic and professional systems. Pedagogies based on learning by doing experiences (such as the Alternanza Scuola-Lavoro and the university traineeship) represent some focus of reflection. On the other hand, we examine the elements that come into play in the transition from school/university to work, with particular regard to guidance practices. Attention is therefore drawn to the differentiation of educational and professional choices based on class, ethnicity and gender lines.

G.1. Challenging discourses of merit and choice: Students’ experiences and policy development in contemporary higher education
Marco ROMITO (University of Milan “Bicocca”), Berenice SCANDONE (NatCen Policy Research Centre)

G.3. The school-work alternance policy after the “good school”
Nicolas DIVERT (Université Paris-Est Créteil), Gabriele PINNA (University of Cagliari)

G.4. For a new paradigm of university to work transitions: New orientation practices for socio-economic and labor transformation
Giovanna CAMPANELLA (University “Guglielmo Marconi”), Luisa DE VITA (University of Rome “La Sapienza”), Tommaso CUMBO (ANPAL)

G.5. Education and training systems today, between economic logics and socialization
Raffaele SIBILIO (University of Naples “Federico II”), Paola BUONANNO

G.6. Training educational professionals: The challenge of University traineeship
Cristina PALMIERI (University of Milan “Bicocca”), Francesca OGGIONNI (University of Milan “Bicocca”)

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H. Professionals and Governance

During recent decades unprecedented attention is being directed at “the quality” of teachers, educators and professionals in education systems and in formal and informal learning environments around the world by a small group of global and national actors. Since the early 2000s, there has been a “thickening” in the global governance of education. Both the OECD, and most recently the World Bank, have insisted on a new debate, and promoted new tools for the governing of educational realms, including teachers’ pedagogical practices potentially linked to student learning outcomes. Many outstanding scholars claim that over recent years, research has shown the ways that national governments have seemingly ceded some of their autonomy in education policy development to international organisations in the context of globalisation and one of its conduits, Europeanisation. Indeed, governance has been posing questions, dilemma, conflicts and polemics at national, regional and local levels with single educational institutes being affected.

Relationships among students, families, educators, evaluators, policy makers and administrative managers are characterized by the emerging role of non-state actors and changing role of the states who cooperate and compete in the designing of transnational education policies and instruments; those that are transposed into the national contexts. Traditionally, education, has been firmly controlled by the hegemonic state which held regulatory powers to force compliance. Within transnational governance of education, the authority – as legitimate power – is shared, negotiated and constructed by the various actors which apart from governments include also international organizations, transnational stakeholder associations, ranking agencies, experts and expert groups and others. Quality assurance and accreditation, international rankings and standardized measures of learning outcomes are some of the key instruments of the contemporary transnational governance of education policies; and they serve differently to different actors in their influence on issues, policies and instruments that shape practices of education institutions. Furthermore, the differences in actual implementation of transnational practices are usually attributed to the influence of national contexts, but rarely are contextual factors fully understood or systematically investigated.

H.2. [Special session] The changing of academic profession in the contemporary university
Roberto MOSCATI (University of Milan “Bicocca”), Stefano BOFFO (University of Naples “Federico II”), Michele ROSTAN (University of Pavia), Daniele CHECCHI (University of Milan “Statale”)

H.4. Tools, models and methodological perspectives for school improvement and innovation
Andrea MARCHESI (University of Bologna), Sara MORI (INDIRE), Francesca STORAI (INDIRE)

H.5. Teacher professionalism, teacher quality and school improvement in international contexts
Monica MINCU (University of Turin)

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I. Education, Values and the Future

Education conceived as perspective for future generations opens up the opportunity to enlighten different epistemological discourses, with particular references to evolutions on global scale (post-democracy, post-capitalism, participation…), to the role played by research, technology and knowledge (knowledge for the future, knowledge of art and music…), to the most suitable methodologies (innovation, integrated schools, socialization, documentation, debate, workshops on future…).
What might happen to the ways in which we educate if we treat these questions as a way to be human? A question that can only be answered by engaging in education rather than as a question that needs to be answered before we can educate. The stream hosts different way to understand and approach education, focussing on important questions about pedagogy, community and educational responsibility. Why the question as to what constitutes good education has become so much more difficult to ask? How may the future of education be expected along a democratic control over values, ethics, science and knowledge?

I.2. Post-democracy and the field of Arts and Music Education
Clementina CASULA (University of Cagliari), Marco SANTORO (University of Bologna), Izabela WAGNER (University of Warsaw)

I.3. [Special session] Education, cultural heritages and the Mediterranean space: History and creative processes of intergenerational transmission
Alessandra BROCCOLINI (University of Rome “La Sapienza”), Stèphane MOURLANE (Aix-Marseille Université), Luca SALMIERI (University of Rome “La Sapienza”)

I.5. For an integrated school: Territory-institutes, projects and trainings to build an educative community of the third millennium
Andrea BERNARDI (Istituto Comprensivo S. Martino di Lupari), Domenico NISI (MUSE Trento), Marta VILLA (University of Trento)

I.6. The debate: Strategy for training in democracy
Paolo SOMMAGGIO (University of Trento), Chiara TAMANINI (IPRASE)

I.7. Learning futures
Giuliana MANDICH (University of Cagliari), Roberto POLI (University of Trento)

I.8. From data collection to the construction of a reticular collective intelligence

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