Klatt, G., Milana, M. (2020). Governing education policy: the European Union and Australia. Australian and New Zealand Journal of European Studies, 12(1): 25-39.

This paper considers the changing modes of governance of education policy in the European Union (EU) and Australia through a lens of ‘soft governance’. It considers the increased use of ‘policy instruments’ such as benchmarking, targets, monitoring, data-generation in policy-making in recent decades. It considers the roles these policy instruments play in coordinating education policy in the EU and Australia as well as their intended and unintended consequences. It shows that in the EU, these instruments played a role in strengthening the coordination through the links between individuals and programs, and networking, which is seen as resulting in enhanced creativity in policy solutions, development of new norms and new means for achieving policy goals. While in Australia it seems that the role of these instruments is focused on consolidating the role of the Commonwealth’s oversight and control over what constitutionally is a responsibility of States which adds to several policy tensions already existing in the federal coordination of education.