Phillip Jones (1949 - )

Jones, Phillip

Short Biography & Significant Contribution

Phillip Jones is a Professor in the Faculty of Education and Social Work, University of Sydney, Australia where he holds a Personal Chair in Education. Professor Jones has pioneered much Australian interest in the international dynamics of educational policy and practice. He is also a leading contributor to the field of comparative and international education both in Australia and worldwide. The major contribution in Jones' conceptual and empirical work has been to foster understandings of inter-state, transnational and global dynamics in the formation of educational theory, policy and practice.

Jones' international relations approach to education was applied in his investigations of prominent international organizations. His books on UNESCO, the World Bank and United Nations are the standard historical and analytical accounts of their education policies and programs, and provide substantial empirical data on this aspect of international relations and international organizational theory. These works have led directly to new understandings of multilateral education. A second line of inquiry has addressed the conceptual distinction between economic globalization and internationalist idealism. Examining the 'logic' of each, Jones has applied the resulting contrasts to new conceptual frameworks, addressing democratic prospects for education worldwide, and illuminating how various interests compete over education policy content.

Jones' investigations of literacy strategies for adults and out-of-school youth in developing countries are of major significance. These have addressed the factors that contribute to cost-effectiveness and better integration with mainstream strategies for formal and non-formal education. This work was recognized in the International Literacy Year (1990) when Jones received an award for contributions to international literacy from the Australian Minister for Employment, Education and Training.

Jones has also conducted significant empirical and historical research concerning his home country Australia. Through highly competitive Australian Research Council grants, Jones has conducted 2 major projects. The first (with Professor Anthony Welch) provides a post-war history of Australia's international engagements in education. The second (with Dr Elizabeth Cassity) examines the operations of the Australian official aid agency (AusAID) in supporting educational development in Asia and the Pacific.

Jones has held two terms of office as President of the Australia and New Zealand Comparative and International Education Society (ANZCIES) and was a founding member of the Society in 1973. He is a former Council member of the World Council of Comparative Education Societies and its Research Commission. He has accepted invitations to be Visiting Professor at Columbia University (2004), and the Universities of Bristol (1999), Auckland (1997), Pittsburgh (1995) and London (1991). He presented a course at the prestigious doctoral-level Oslo Summer School in Comparative Social Science Studies in 2001. He served for many years as Chair of the Education Group of the Australian National Commission for UNESCO, and has accepted appointment by the Director General of UNESCO on a number of Asia-Pacific consultative bodies on education.

Phillip Jones frequently presents in-house seminars on education policy within international organizations, most recently at the World Bank, OECD, UN and UNESCO. He has completed a range of consultancy reports for national and international bodies on such areas as: prospects for reform in the UN, recognition of higher education qualifications in the Asia-Pacific region, relating adult literacy to school-based literacy strategies, maximizing economic returns to investments in adult literacy, and progress to date in achieving the UN's Millennium Development Goals concerning education. Keynote appearances were made at the 60th Anniversary Commemoration of UNESCO in Paris in November 2005, and as the featured author in the "Author Meets Critics" panel at the 50th Anniversary Conference of the US Comparative and International Education Society in Honolulu in March 2006 (featuring his book The United Nations and Education).

Educational Background

BA (First-Class Honours in Education), University of Sydney (1972)

PhD, University of Sydney (1978) Major fields: international and development education; history of education; education policy and planning

Professional Background

Personal Chair, International and Development Education, University of Sydney, Australia (2006 to present)

Director, Research Institute for Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Sydney (2005 to present)

Pro-Dean, Faculty of Education and Social Work, University of Sydney (2000-2004)

Head, School of Social, Policy and Curriculum Studies, University of Sydney (1996-2000)

Deputy Director of the Australian higher education system's international education agency IDP Education Australia (1982-1985)

Associate Professor/Senior Lecturer, Faculty of Education, University of Sydney (1975-2005)

Affiliations (associations, organizations, institutions)

Australia New Zealand Comparative and International Education Society, President (1980-1981; 1990-1991), Founding Member (1973)

World Council of Comparative Education Societies, Research Commission (1990-1998)

Member of Editorial Boards: Globalisation, Societies and Education; International Journal of Educational DevelopmentPeabody Journal of Education; and Prospects: Quarterly Review of Comparative Education. He is a regular reviewer for these journals and for Comparative Education; Comparative Education Review; Compare and International Review of Education, and numerous academic presses.

Selected Publications

World Bank Financing of Education: Lending, Learning and Development (second edition revised and updated). London and New York: RoutledgeFalmer (2007).

Education, Poverty and the World Bank. Rotterdam: Sense Publishers (2006).

The United Nations and Education: Multilateralism, Development and Globalisation. London & New York: RoutledgeFalmer (2005).

Literacy and Basic education for Adults and Young People: A Review of Experience. Paris: UNESCO (1990).

International Policies for Third World Education: UNESCO, Literacy and Development. London and New York: Routledge (1988).

Australia's International Relations in Education. Hawthorn: Australian Council for Educational Research (1986).

Journal articles

Education and world order. Comparative Education 43(3) 2007, 325-337.

UNDP and educational development: an institutional policy analysis. International Journal of Educational development 26(6) 2006, 605-617.

Elusive mandate: UNICEF and educational development. International Journal of Educational Development 26(6) 2006, 591-604.

Globalisation and the UNESCO mandate: multilateral prospects for educational development. International Journal of Educational Development 19 (1) 1999, 17-25.

Globalisation and internationalism: democratic prospects for world education. Comparative Education 34 (2) 1998, 143-155.

On World Bank education financing. Comparative Education 33 (1) 1997, 117-129.

UNESCO and the politics of global literacy. Comparative Education Review. 43 (1) 1991, 41-60.

Dilemmas of regionalism: higher education and development in the South Pacific. International Journal of Educational Development 9 (3) 1989, 195-209.

UNESCO - in search of a tradition. Melbourne Studies in Education 1982, 257-277.


Created: 3/19/2008

Updated: 3/19/2008

Contributed By: Elizabeth Cassity, University of Sydney