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Can the Pandemic Build a Bridge Spanning the Theory-Practice Divide in Comparative and International Education?


Humanity has come to look up to education to take on any challenge encountered on its way. Consequently, a massive education expansion project commenced some seventy years ago. By 2020, however, this project had still been far from complete and far from being perfect. Deficiencies and shortcomings are salient on all three fronts of access to education, equality of education, and quality education. The ravages caused by the Covid-19 pandemic have also aggravated deficiencies in education worldwide and made it urgent to address shortcomings in education. The task’s urgency to rebuild education to its rightful place in the post-pandemic world means there is no room for experimentation. Nations should be learning from one another regarding their experience with education. The thesis of this study is that the scholarly field of comparative and international education is ideally suited to guide this exercise, but in order to live up to its potential, one major challenge that has beset the field for most of its history, namely the theoretical-practical divide, needs to be overcome. If the pandemic can succeed in effecting such a change, it will be to the benefit of both the field and education. In using comparative and international education to guide the post-pandemic education project, education in the BRICS countries has a pivotal role. If the articles in this volume can assist in developing a vision for a post-pandemic global education project, it will be, also as a starting point to get comparativists to enter the realm of education praxis, worth the endeavour.


Comparative and International Education, COVID-19 Pandemic, Access to Education, BRICS Education, Equality in Education, Quality in Education, Theory of Education



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