Education unions forge a pathway from research to advocacy

published 31 May 2017 updated 1 June 2017

With an aim to research, refine, and resist, teachers’ unions are reinforcing their leading role at the cutting edge of research methods and practices at the 13th annual Education International Research Network meeting.

Putting research at the core of education unions’ strategies is one of the main objectives as more than 60 participants are expected to gather in Brussels, Belgium for the  annual Education International (EI) Research Network (ResNet) meeting to share best practice and experience about the most effective approaches to research, as well as hearing from experts on particular policy areas. The meeting is taking place from 30 May-1 June.

Through research, EI affiliates will look to improve efforts to counter threats to quality education and the teaching profession.

This meeting brings together research leads from all over the world and takes a clear focus on the pathway from research to advocacy.

Burning issues

With sessions on Big Pedagogy versus Big Data and Professional Issues and the Politics of Change, the first day includes debates around current burning issues. Phil McRae from the Alberta Teachers’ Association is going to lead an interactive workshop with teachers around Digital Reporting, Assessment, and the Measurement of Wellbeing in a Digital Age. Real issues are often clothed in the language of technology in a way that can deprofessionalise, he says, while acknowledging that technology calls for a rich critique of the commercial interests that can often surround it.


The issue of professionalism will be further explored by Philippa Cordingley, Chief Executive of the Centre for the Use of Research and Evidence in Education in her session on the construction of Professional Identity. Launching a new research project commissioned by the EI Research Institute’s board, she is grappling with the intersection between teacher identity, teacher leadership, and professional agency.

The many networking opportunities and sharing of best practicesResNet provides participants with will continue the next day.