Journal of Educational Change

, Volume 13, Issue 3, pp 289–310 | Cite as

Moving knowledge around: Strategies for fostering equity within educational systems

  • Mel AinscowEmail author


This paper describes and analyses the work of a large scale improvement project in England in order to find more effective ways of fostering equity within education systems. The project involved an approach based on an analysis of local context, and used processes of networking and collaboration in order to make better use of available expertise. Reflecting on the impact and difficulties involved in using such an approach, the paper draws out lessons that may be relevant to other contexts. Consideration is also given to the implications for policy makers, practitioners and community stakeholders.


Educational equity Contextual analysis Networking and collaboration Social capital 



The work described in this paper is the product of the efforts and creativity of many colleagues in the schools, local authorities and communities of Greater Manchester. Particular thanks must go to the splendid team of advisers and civil servants who worked with me on the project. Their efforts were in themselves a demonstration of the power of collaboration. I would also like to acknowledge the contributions of my colleagues Chris Chapman, Alan Dyson, Peter Farrell, Denis Mongon and Mel West who acted as critical friends throughout the project and, in so doing, contributed many ideas to the analysis presented in the paper.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Centre for Equity in EducationUniversity of ManchesterManchesterUK

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