Policy Challenges: New Spaces for Women’s Lifelong Learning

  • Irene Malcolm
  • Sue Jackson
  • Kate Thomas
Part of the Lifelong Learning Book Series book series (LLLB, volume 15)


This book is written at a transitional moment in women’s lives at the beginning of the second decade of the 21st century. Authored by women who are practitioners, policy advisers and academics, the work draws on a view of feminism as the pursuit of an agenda for social change that aims to improve the position of women, furthering their influence and benefiting society overall by enhancing their contributions. The chapter authors make a distinctive contribution to lifelong learning research by specifically questioning the gendered assumptions that surround choice. While choice has been the mantra of neo-liberal politics in education (Apple 2001), the present volume adds to critical voices that highlight the bounded nature of choice. The authors critique gendered choices that constrain women and limit their access to certain types of learning and careers . Women’s gendered pathways are influenced by assumptions about innate qualities of women and men. These assumptions inform education policies and broad cultural expectations of women.


Lifelong Learning Education Education Present Volume Relation Relation Community Community 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


  1. Apple, M. (2001). Comparing neo-liberal politics and inequality in education. Comparative Education, 37(4), 409–423.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Bloom, L. (2009). ‘When one person makes it, we all make it’: A study of Beyond Welfare, a women-centered community-based organization that helps low-income mothers achieve personal and academic success. International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education, 22(4), 485–503.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Burman, E. (2006). Emotions and reflexivity in feminised education action research. Educational Action Research, 14, 315–332.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Devos, A. (2002). Gender, work and workplace learning. In F. Reeve, M. Cartwright, & R. Edwards (Eds.), Supporting lifelong learning: Vol. 2. Organizing learning (pp. 51–63). Suffolk: Open University Press.Google Scholar
  5. Faulkner, W. (2004). Strategies of inclusion: Gender and the Information Society. European Commission, 5th Framework, Information Society Technologies (IST) Programme, SIGIS, Edinburgh.Google Scholar
  6. Fenwick, T. (2006). Contradictions in portfolio careers: Work design and client relations. Career Development International, 11(1), 65–79.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Fenwick, T. (2008). Women’s learning in contract work: Practicing contradictions in boundaryless conditions. Vocations and Learning, 1(1), 11–26.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Gillard, H., Howcroft, D., Mitev, N., & Richardson, H. (2007). Missing women: Gender, ICTs and the shaping of the global economy. CRESC (Centre for Research on Socio-Cultural Change) Working Paper No. 29, CRESC, University of Manchester, Manchester.Google Scholar
  9. Hooghe, M., & Stolle, D. (2003). Generating social capital: Civil society and institutions in comparative perspective. Basingstoke: Palgrave McMillan.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Jensen, K. (2007). The desire to learn: An analysis of knowledge-seeking practices among professionals. Oxford Review of Education, 33(4), 489–502.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Massey, D. (1994). Space, place and gender. Cambridge: Polity.Google Scholar
  12. Massey, D. (1995). Spatial divisions of labour. Social structures and the geography of production (2nd ed.). London: MacMillan.Google Scholar
  13. Munro, A., & Rainbird, H. (2002). Job change and workplace learning in the public sector: The significance of new technology for unskilled work. New Technology, Work and Employment, 17(3), 224–234.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Nagar, R., Lawson, V., McDowell, L., & Hanson, S. (2002). Locating globalization: Feminist (re)readings of the subjects and spaces of globalization. Economic Geography, 78, 257–284.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Öhrn, E., & Weiner, G. (2009). The sound of silence! Reflections on inclusion and exclusion in the field of education and gender. Gender and Education, 21(4), 423–430.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Quinn, J. (2003). Powerful subjects. Stoke-on-Trent: Trentham.Google Scholar
  17. Quinn, J. (2005). Belonging in a learning community: The reimagined university and imagined social capital. Studies in the Education of Adults, 37(1), 4–17.Google Scholar
  18. Thomas, L. (2001). Power, assumptions and prescriptions: A critique of widening participation policy-making. Higher Education Policy, 14(4), 361–376.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of EducationUniversity of DundeeDundeeUK
  2. 2.Birkbeck Institute for Lifelong LearningBirkbeck University of LondonLondonUK
  3. 3.Schools and Colleges Partnership ServiceUniversity of the West of EnglandBristolUK

Personalised recommendations