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Changes to adult learning and education (ALE) policy environment in Finland, Korea and the United States: implications for addressing inequality in ALE participation


In conducting a literature review, this article explores changes to Adult Learning and Education (ALE) policies and related processes as well as the context within which those changes have taken place, so as to draw out comparative insights regarding the unequal distribution of participation in ALE. Emphasis is on an analysis of political priorities, political-administrative guidelines, and organisational and administrative dimensions of ALE in Finland, Korea and the United States. While country-specific differences are identified, several convergences are also of importance: a priority assigned to ALE as a means to support market-driven policy, namely to enhance competitiveness in the globalised market; legislative efforts to support the demands for developing a skilled and competent workforce in the labour market; decentralised organisational and administrative structures that relate to ALE; and a decreasing trend in publicly funded ALE.

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