Political Economy Paper - October 2022 - The Politics of Improving Learning
9 October 2022
The reason we deal with the questions in the reverse order is that we wanted to focus the historical analysis on aspects of the system which, within the political economy framework, emerge as the most problematic, or promising, for future progress. [...] In the case of the current paper, the two authors have a close relationship with the South African bureaucracy, and have themselves been responsible for some of the work in this bureaucracy. [...] The impact of bureaucratic capacity on policies, systems and the likelihood of progress We now turn to the actual policies and systems of the schooling sector, designed to realise the political intent. [...] Patronage in the hiring of teachers could occur in a centralised model, of course, but the risks of this kind of corruption at the centre may be smaller, because the scale of the process means there are more rules-based procedures, and fewer personal connections. [...] The fact that the 1994 transition to democracy is not reflected in any specific change at that point in the trajectory supports Pritchett’s argument that the correlation between democracy and the supply of schooling is in general not strong.