European Journal for Research on the Education and Learning of Adults
2012 pp. 155-170

Title: Subordinating careers to market forces? A critical analysis of European career guidance policy
Author: Ingela Bergmo-Prvulovic
Affiliation: Jönköping University, Sweden (ingela.bergmo-prvulovic@hlk.hj.se)
DOI: 10.3384/rela.2000-7426.rela0072
First published: 2012-10-09
Year: 2012
Pages: 155-170
Number of pages: 16
Article number: RELA0072
Language: English
Publisher: Linköping University Electronic Press, Linköping University, Sweden
Publication type: Journal article
Journal: European Journal for Research on the Education and Learning of Adults
ISSN: 2000-7426

Abstract

This study explores language regarding career and career development in European policy documents on career guidance in order to disclose underlying view(s) of these phenomena conveyed in the texts. Qualitative content analysis was used to approach the subject in the texts, followed by a sender-oriented interpretation. Sources for interpretation include several sociological and pedagogical approaches based upon social constructionism. These provide a framework for understanding how different views of career phenomena arise. The characterization of career phenomena in the documents falls into four categories: contextual change, environment-person correspondence, competence mobility, and empowerment. An economic perspective on career dominates, followed by learning and political science perspectives. Policy formulations convey contradictory messages and a form of career 'contract' that appears to subordinate individuals' careers to global capitalism, while attributing sole responsibility for career to individuals.

Keywords

Career; career development; lifelong learning; guidance; European policies.

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