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Cadernos de Pesquisa

Print version ISSN 0100-1574

Cad. Pesqui. vol.44 no.153 São Paulo July/Sept. 2014 



Approaches on education planning in Cadernos de Pesquisa (1972-1986)



Fabiana Silva Fernandes

Researcher at the Fundação Carlos Chagas,




A documental study of articles on educational planning published in the journal Cadernos de Pesquisa. 35 pieces published in theEducational Planning [Planejamento Educacional],section in the period between 1972 and 1986 were analyzed. The aim was to analyze the texts from a historical perspective of development of educational planning in Latin America. An analysis of the documents was conducted, defining two levels of analysis, one relating to the textual elements of the articles and the other relating to the content discussed. In the first level of analysis, analytical texts, overviews of methodologies and experiences and guidance texts were identified. In relation to the second level of analysis, the following categories were observed: the first consists of educational planning under the economic system; the second consists of articles that discuss themes and reflections on educational planning; and the third category consists of critical works on educational planning.

Educational planning, normative planning, Latin America, Cadernos de Pesquisa



THE OBJECTIVE OF THIS ARTICLE is to assess works on the topic of educational planning that were published in the journal Cadernos de Pesquisa. In order to do so, articles relating to the topic were surveyed, dating back to journal's first publication. An analysis was conducted on the editorial format of the journal, the textual structure of the published works, the design and purpose of educational planning and its link with State planning. In the period from 1972 to 1986, 35 articles were found in the Educational Planning section.

The perspective that guided the analysis of this material is based on the discussion of the history of planning in capitalist countries, particularly in Latin America, in which, from the 1950s, with the creation of the Economic Commission for Latin America – CELAC –and with the implementation of national development policies in Latin American countries, a certain model of planning spread, which was aligned with a State interventionist conception.

In Latin America, planning gained momentum in the 1950s and 1960s, as a factor for promoting economic growth and social development. Therefore, this coincided with the development of an economic model that encouraged industrialization by replacing imports at the end of World War II, and the creation of CELAC in 1948, which served in design of an explanatory model for economic inequalities between countries, contributing to the creation of a developmental perspective of State intervention in the economy and state performance strategies through global and sector planning (FERNANDES, 2006). CELAC was the great driver in Latin American industrialization and its planning, having an important contribution in development of explanations for Latin America backwardness in relation to the so-called developed centers, and demonstrating ways of overcoming them (MANTEGA, 1995).

In methodological terms, the current planning was "normative" or "rational-developmentist", characterized by its centralization in a specialized body of the State and by the effort to submit social and economic realities to modern scientific rationality.1 There exist several techniques and methodologies of planning grouped within the prescriptive approach, since they constitute, in essence, of a rigorous sequence of steps: diagnosis, decision, analysis, basic proposal and basic project containing objectives, activities, schedule of activities, resources, costs and sources of funding.

The term rational-developmentist planning (racional-desarrollista) was suggested by Carlos A. de Mattos (1987), because it is an activity inspired by a single rationality, which is both substantive (subject to social purposes established a priori) and formal (subject to concrete technical employment that aims to optimize the relationship between the means and ends) and for being linked to the developmental conception of State intervention. Carlos Matus (1987, 1993, 1997) named it normative planning, due to the rigidity of the steps and the predominance of an economic perspective in the analysis of the reality subject to the plan. Other terms used for planning methodologies developed in the 1950s, and 1960s are economic and social planning and traditional planning.

In Latin America, the delineation of normative planning methodologies was driven by the CELAC, which, based on the Soviet model, published Introducción a la técnica de programación in 1955. Other international bodies which dedicated themselves to this were the Organization of American States – OAS –, a promoter of the Inter-American Educational Planning Seminar taking place in Washington in 1958, and the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development – OECD –, which implemented the methodology of human resources planning in Peru and Argentina, using the success of the Mediterranean Regional Project in Southern Europe as a reference.

Recognized as the most appropriate instrument for Latin American States to intervene into the economy of their countries and promote development, normative planning was officially adopted at the Punta del Este Meeting in 1961, when the Alliance for Progress was established. The agreement required Latin American countries to draw up plans for development as a counterpart for external investment to give continuity to the project of Latin America's modernization.

During the 1950s and early 1960s, there was an effort to organize education in an integral and rational manner in Latin America, and create "educational systems" adapted to then-current economic and social development, through the use of rational-normative planning techniques. Within this perspective, the first educational plan drawn up in Latin America was the five-year Primer Plan Qüinqüenal de Educación of Colombia in 1956.

Latin America was the second region, after Europe, to start planning activities of education, which clarifies investment made in educational planning and its dissemination in the period from 1972 to 1986, when the Carlos Chagas Foundation published the Educational Planning section in the journal Cadernos de Pesquisa.



The first issue of Cadernos de Pesquisa was published in 1971, with Lólio Lourenço de Oliveira as the editor and an Editorial Board comprised of the following individuals: Ana Maria Poppovic, Aparecida J. Gouvea, Bernardete A. Gatti, Carmen Barroso, Heraldo Vianna, Maria Amélia Goldberg, Adolpho Ribeiro Neto and Nicia Maria Bessa.

The publication's foreword indicates that the publication of this material was an initiative aimed at developing a channel of communication between institutions and groups or people who dedicated themselves to educational research. To this end, in October of 1972, Cadernos de Pesquisa published, in its fourth issue, the Educational Planning section, initiating the dissemination of works, mostly by foreign authors, about experiences in educational planning in various underdeveloped countries. Initially, several booklets on The Fundamentals of Educational Planning series were translated and published, organized by the International Institute for Educational Planning – IIEP – of Paris.

Given that Cadernos de Pesquisa published 28 issues in the series during 1972 - 1980, it considers this work of the IIEP to be important, with the purpose of presenting some aspects of the editorial objective of The Fundamentals of Educational Planning [Fundamentos do Planejamento Educacional] conceived by Philip Coombs and Clarence Edward Beeby.

The first work published by Cadernos de Pesquisa, in October 1972, was the text entitled "What is the educational planning?" by Philip H. Coombs. This work was translated by Leonidas Gontijo de Carvalho, who was responsible for most of the English translations of IIEP's works.

The article by Philip H. Coombs was originally published in 1970. It was the first title of IIEP's series The Fundamentals of Educational Planning, although it was only printed after the first twelve works were published. According to Beeby's explanation, the delay was the result of Coombs becoming director of the IIPE, which led to an accumulation of tasks, and the rapid changes in theories about educational planning in early 1970s. The author's strategy for discussing planning was the adoption of a historical approach to educational planning, concerning the trajectories of reflection one educational planning in the 1950s and 1960s, and then to highlight trends of the 1970s, seeking to cover the planning dilemma at that period. Within this historical perspective, Coombs emphasized political and administrative conditions that posed challenges to educational planners.

Although its publication was delayed, Coombs' text inaugurated a series about planning for the technical staff in public and political administration, as explained in the foreword of the collection:

The booklets in this series are written primarily for two groups: those engaged in – or preparing – educational planning and administration, especially in developing countries; and others, less specialized, such as senior government officials and civic leaders, who seek a more general understanding of educational planning and of how it can be of help, above all for national development. They are devised to be utilized either as support material for private study or in formal training programs. (UNESCO, 1970, p. 6)

Initially coordinated by Clarence Edward Beeby, who edited the works published by the IIEP between 1967 and 1972, the series' main focus was planning in developing countries. The topics refer to planning methods and techniques of areas complementary to planning, such as accounting and demographics, as well as the problems faced by underdeveloped countries in developing their plans and reforming their educational systems, aligned with a policy on economic development.

In 1973, Herbert Lionel Elvin took over the publication of the editions, probably until 1974. Between the years of 1976 and 1977, Hans Weiler, then Director of the IIEP, seems to have taken over publication of the final five works, which were published by the Carlos Chagas Foundation.

The IIEP works are productions of predominantly European and American authors, with extensive experience in underdeveloped countries in political and technical positions, in Ministries of Education, training courses and international organizations such as the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization – UNESCO – and the United Nations Development Program – UNDP.

Most of the texts were translated from English and some from French. In the attached Table 1 are the works from the Fundamentals of Educational Planning series, with information related to publication dates by the IIEP and the Carlos Chagas Foundation, as well as other data on the publishing of texts.



In addition to the IIEP works, which accounted for 27 articles, the journal Cadernos de Pesquisa published eight more texts in the Educational Planning section, among them two texts authored by researchers from the Carlos Chagas Foundation, Maria Amélia Azevedo Goldberg, in 1973, and Vitor Henrique Paro, in 1976. The remaining articles date from 1981 to 1986, with the first four written by Latin American authors and the last two from the Federal University of Pernambuco. Table 2, also attached, lists the above-mentioned works.



In the analysis of the articles published in Cadernos de Pesquisa, two possible strategies were devised: the first is grouping the texts into two groups, one consisting of the IIEP works and another by other authors; the second analytical model concerns the contextual observation of publications, within a historical perspective of development of educational planning in Latin America.

The first option permits verifying if the IIEP publications have a greater focus on economic planning, which education would be impacted by, while for other authors, education is the driving element of the discussion about planning, whether in the school unit or within the framework of educational policy. However, even if the chosen alternative were this one, temporal analysis could not be ruled out, because the discussion about planning assumes various directions, given the economic context of underdeveloped countries and the development of critical thinking about the social, political and economic situation in Latin America.

Therefore, the second analysis strategy was selected, a procedure that allowed understanding how the productions on educational planning in Latin America are rooted in the region's economic development models and the existing technical possibilities, to offer tools for the diagnosis and the prediction of the resources required for planning.

In terms of reading and analysis of the articles,2 the goal was to observe the topics and objectives of the authors, the types and approaches of the texts and the different planning approaches and concepts in them. As a result, two levels of text analysis were conducted, one concerning the nature of the text and the other the content, both published.

With respect to the nature of the text, it should be noted that articles differ in approach, some promoting the methodological discussion of planning, or the technical discussion of for example, accounting procedures, demographic procedures, etc., or theoretical discussions; or experience reports in the field of planning.

According to Table 1, it can be seen that 66% of the 35 articles published (23 texts) have a theoretical or technical approach. Only four have a methodological approach, conceived in a broader perspective, which seeks to articulate the methodological procedures with a theoretical perspective. This is most likely the case because normative planning, a predominant focus of the topic, emphasizes technique and procedures, with little reflections on the method of planning as a mechanism for formulation and implementation of State action.

Observing the distribution of articles by nature of publication shows that, over the years, the theoretical discussion takes place throughout the analysis period, while the technical discussion occurs until 1977. This can be explained by the fact that, from this period onwards, normative planning presented difficulties in implementation, receiving a great deal of criticism. In this sense, Table 2 illustrates the distribution of these articles by approach:

Also related to nature, another investigated aspect refers to the type of text published, which identified analytical character productions, overviews of techniques and experiences and orientation guides, usually related to the texts concerning technical discussion and experience reports.

Articles classified as synthetic refer to planning methodology overviews, information about national planning bodies and overviews of techniques. These were published between 1972 and 1976, and came from the IIEP and the Carlos Chagas Foundation. They are more technical texts, predominantly taking a methodological and technical approach, and are based on an era of dissemination of experiences and the tools available for development of economic planning.

Texts classified as orientation guides come from the IIEP, and were published between the years of 1973 to 1980. The great majority adopt a technical approach, with some experiences reports, and address issues related to educational planning, concerning planning techniques, the role of the education planner and administrator and specific problems faced by developing countries, such as rural education and continuing education, which require the planner to specifically consider this issue. There are articles that discuss macro-planning within an economic approach, with little connection to education; while others – mainly those that related to the difficulties of Latin American education – devote a greater focus to social and economic issues that affect educational planning, bringing a significant contribution to the discussion about the planning of national education systems.

Articles classified as analytical texts are mostly theoretical articles and, with the exception of those published in 1972 and 1975, feature a more critical approach to Latin American issues that were not resolved by economic planning. Similar to articles termed orientation guides, which consist of an analysis of the socioeconomic situation of Latin American countries, these texts seek to understand the reasons why plans were not successful.

In Table 3, it can be seen that nearly half of the texts are orientation guides, although these also show analytic or synthetic characteristics. These were therefore classified only as orientation guides, given that this is what sets them apart from other works.



Distribution of articles by text type and year of publication, according to Table 4, provides the following information:



It can be observed that orientation guides, the most frequent type of text, cover the period from 1972 to 1980, and not appearing in the 1980s, at which time critical analysis texts on educational planning were written, which will be discussed below.

In order to summarize the information on the nature of published articles, Figure 3 is attached to this paper, in which all articles have been grouped by the type of text, in ascending order by year, and with clarifications on the subject of each article, considering respective approaches and authors.

The second level of analysis, referring to the content of the publication, allowed the classification of articles into three groups: the first comprises educational planning under the economic system; the second addresses topics and reflections on educational planning itself and the problems of the Latin American educational systems; the third group is a critique of educational planning.

The first group concerns the articles published in the 1970s, and are characterized by an emphasis on the technical aspect of planning, conceiving of educational planning under the economic system, to the extent that the development of education would have economic growth as its horizon, through the analysis of needs relating to labor, cost projections, forecasting of teaching vacancies and development of strategies to develop human resources and increase the efficiency of educational institutions. In this sense, it confirms the idea of an educational plan integrated with the economic and social plan, aimed at national development, particularly with regard to labor training.

From the methodological point of view, programmatic planning was dominant during the second half of the 1960s, and was characterized by the attempt to incorporate all dimensions of the object being planned in the plan, as in the style of integral educational planning. On the other hand, the predominant focus was the human-resources model, which was the first to stand out before the investment model and the model of social demand (AGUERRONDO, 2000).

Educational planning based on human resources models would start with estimated labor needs, projected onto the economy, for people with varying levels of formal education and specific types of technical and professional skills and knowledge. Then, with this information in hand, the appropriate levels and modes of education should be adjusted so that the result of the educational system supplies the needs of the economy. It should be noted that this was a long-term planning process, limited to predicting the needs and expectations about the economy, as well as the particularities of the labor market.

Another focus of the planning approach in this first series was the investment model, which analyzes the cost-effectiveness of alternative policies to determine, which is the most efficient. This model seeks to answer questions about the optimization of state spending and the allocation of available resources, and has as its basis works on the economics of education, particularly that by Schultz, Solow, Denison and Kuznet (UNESCO; CELAC; UNDP, 1981).

The human resources and investment approach, termed by Tedesco (1987) as offering focus, complement each other as explanatory and normative perspectives of the economic process.

Within this perspective, the problem consisted, in social terms, of determining what the educational contribution was to economic growth and, at the individual level, identifying the impact on productivity and entry into the labor market. The relationship between education and employment is characterized by two basic postulates. The first refers to the relationship between education and employment on an individual level: "education develops the productivity of the worker, and as salary reflects productivity, an increase in this would provoke salary increases." (TEDESCO, 1987). The second refers to the link between education and the global society's plan: "the rationale considers that if education increases productivity, economic growth is closely linked to educational expansion" and employment on an individual level: "education develops the productivity of the worker, in that salary reflects productivity, an increase in this would provoke salary increases." (TEDESCO, 1987). Therefore, education, based on this focus, would make a contribution to economic growth and in the individual plane, and would focus on productivity and wages. (FERNANDES, 2006, p. 60)

The second category of publications refers to articles that make reflections within the educational system, with social problems and demographic phenomena provided by the industrialization of underdeveloped countries that have brought challenges for educational planning, requiring a broad set of reforms in the educational system. While in the previous set of works, the challenge was the implementation of educational systems aligned with economic development, the issues in this group of articles are the consequences of Latin American economic development: social inequality; the rural exodus; rural education; continuing education; the educational curriculum in rural areas; the high costs; restricted access to children from rural areas; the low quality of education; the delay in the provision of appropriate education in relation to development goals; youth unemployment and the high wealth concentration. There is a greater focus on these topics than on planning and its techniques, in that the purpose of these articles was to discuss the social reality, providing support for planners to reflect on the effectiveness and limitations of plans developed.

Pierre Furter, for example, in the work published in Cadernos de Pesquisa in 1978, discussed the relationship between planning and continuing education, given that continuing education was defined by "vague futuristic outlines", conflicting with prospective analysis, grounded in the current reality and the calculation of trends for the future. From this tension, the author set out to "investigate under what conditions continuing education could become the driving force of the activities of an education planning process". One of the problems that was exposed was the recurring failure to implement plans, which the author attributed fundamentally to the enormous discrepancy between the projects and plans and day-to-day realities of teachers and their practices.

The author also spoke about the reasons that could explain the sudden spread of continuing education starting from 1960, mentioning, among others, socio-economic reasons and policies. The first ones referred to the transformations in production chains, such as automation, which would require that professionals not only upgrade their knowledge, but would also demand "total professional retraining" (FURTER, 1978, p. 77). From a political point of view, the author stated, "continuing education is part of the discussion about the democratization of our post-industrial societies" (p. 77).

The remaining texts classified in that second group follow this line of reasoning, which sought to reflect on educational planning, with specificities and critical challenges within education as its starting point.

Finally, the last five articles published in the Educational Planning section were classified separately, since they introduce a sociological approach in the analysis of social and educational problems. Within this group, there are texts that discuss the context of economic and social development of Latin America and others which, within a more critical perspective to planning, denouncing its commitment to maintaining power structures and reproducing capitalism.

The first few articles in this group were written by Latin American authors, and the last two by Brazilian authors, who discussed planning as a technocratic instrument for state intervention in the context of the national state.

Rama (1981) discussed how education was structured in Latin American countries, in view of the historical, economic and social conditions of countries. He stated that the socioeconomic conditions of Latin America were related to various issues of historical and social origin, such as: the colonial origin of the peoples of the region and the coexistence of rudimentary forms of economic activity with processes of modernization, which provided unequal means of educational access to different social classes. Sharing a structuralist perspective, the author gives important weight to culture:

Culture gives solidity to the social structure constructed from economic structures, and consolidates the legitimacy of the established order; so it has a very important weight in relation to other social dimensions and survives the economic structures and the power system from which it originated, receiving the influence of the changes that are being produced in these orders. (RAMA, 1981, p. 47)

For Rama, modernized elements in Latin America are linked with traditional power structures, unlike what happened in Europe. This analysis recalls the discussion of Faoro (1994) about modernity and modernization, which would provide distinct consequences to the social process, keeping in mind formation of the power structures:

[...] modernity influences, in its process, the whole society, extending the expansion radius of all classes, revitalizing and removing their social roles, while modernization, due to its voluntary – if not proactive – aspect, reaches society through a conducting group that, by privileging themselves, also privilege the dominant sectors. (FAORO, 1994, p. 99)

In this context, education was marked by deep inequalities in access and stood out due to the high illiteracy rate. From the 1960s, changes in the economic model, primarily in the model of substituting imports with an industrialization process aimed a foreign markets, contributed to preventing literacy and popular education from becoming a generalized and homogenizing process.

The agrarian capitalist modernization and investment in more sophisticated technological processes promoted the exclusion of field labor and lack of investment in primary education, producing a social scenario consisting of an unemployed mass, constituted by a marginal population not even considered as reserve labor. The predominant development style, marked by high wealth concentration, directed to external markets and the upper layers of the internal market, determined that full employment as an objective of the economic development process, if not fulfilled, could ruin one of the great goals of economic planning.

The consequence is the trend of polarization in the educational system. While popular education slowly expands, it stimulates the growth of average and higher levels to satisfy the demands of average social groups that, although not properly participating in power nor admission, feed expectations of upward mobility through this offer of extended education, becoming legitimizers of the system by the symbolic participation they have. (RAMA, 1981, p. 54)

In another article published by Cadernos de Pesquisa, Filgueira (1982) pointed out clear trends in educational expansion from 1960 to 1970, presenting evidence of significant growth in High School and Higher Education, at the expense of Primary Schooling. As a consequence, there was inequality in educational access and continued illiteracy: "the process of educational expansion tends to generate average and high educational status, causing relatively qualified over-education that cannot be satisfactorily absorbed by occupations in accordance with this level of training" (FILGUEIRA, 1982, p. 69).

Tedesco (1982) presented information on the level of education in Latin American countries during the period from 1960 to 1970, and its relationship with the industrial labor market, sharing statements made by previous authors on existing inequalities in the offering of different educational levels. He reaffirmed the idea that educational expansion occurred with relative autonomy by "determinations from the productive apparatus" (TEDESCO, 1982, p. 76), as a result of social demands and political decisions that seemed to "play a more decisive role than technical determinations in enhancing educational level of the population" (p. 76). The previous statement was corroborated by empirical evidence confirming that performance in specific jobs was satisfied with different educational levels. "The educational requirements for occupational access and mobility seem to depend more on the conditions under which the labor-market functions rather than technical demands" (TEDESCO, 1982, p. 77). In relation to the phenomenon of educational devaluation, the author understood the social system's response to the process of massification of school institutions, distinguishing two lines of analysis for this phenomenon, namely:

I. the fact that educational expansion is not accompanied by better income distribution;

II. the differences between the actual level of qualification for a particular job and the required qualifications, whose empirical evidence corresponds to the underutilization of the educated workforce. Two interpretations for this phenomenon were the increase in the number of years of study without changes in content of the curriculum and the difficulty of introducing new curriculum contents resulting from scientific-technical advances. Finally, the decreased investment in education, as a factor in the effective decline of educational quality, emerged as a hypothesis for the devaluation of education.

On the other hand, Roggi (1982, p. 59), reflecting on the educational changes in Latin America, took a different approach, stating:

For those that maintain that the so-called educational systems are subsystems of the global society and that, in their development, are strongly conditioned by the functioning of the economic and social structures in this global society, it is clear that, in analyzing elements of inertia and change in these educational systems; it is necessary to study first the characteristics of the process of sociocultural change that is found within the society.

He argued that the global reforms of the educational system are able to overcome inertia, at the expense of those that are partial, of the organizational or methodological type, therefore, extending the understanding of educational reforms beyond the technical issues.

Neves and other authors (1984) critiqued the technical rationality of educational planning, which favors a segmented view of the problems. For the authors, who are opposed this view of planning, planner training, with a practical character and restricted to government agencies, was reviewed in light of the changes in Brazilian society and the increasing strengthening of institutions of civil society.

The text readdressed aspects of the history of Brazilian economic development, critically assessing planning as an instrument of state intervention to organize the process of capitalist accumulation, through the industrialization policies in the country. With growing social inequalities, within a military dictatorship, specific forms of popular struggle appeared, through the organization and claims of civil society, which offered new possibilities for planning as a governmental tool.

Finally, Oliveira and Neves (1986) stated that the regional development programs, implemented starting in the 1970s in Northeastern Brazil and centralized in the federal government, offered changes in relations between central and local powers. In this context:

[...] the colonel who, until then, had lent his unrestricted support to the central power, in exchange for economic and political autonomy at a local level, configured himself as the embodiment of the state itself, by integrating himself to the national bourgeoisie, as a capitalist then loses the prerogative of the Regional State and becomes the representative of the national capitalist expansion project for the region. (OLIVEIRA; NEVES, 1986, p. 6)

Despite this, the Colonel's power did not weaken, because he was reinforced economically, by means of tax incentives, credit and politically, with the formation of a bureaucracy acting on his behalf:

[...] as a result of the new constellation of factors, traditional patronage practices, characterized by the direct relationship of exchanging favors between employer and employee, are progressively replaced by the intermediation of employees, which, under an apparent technical neutrality, ensure the dependence and political control of increasingly representative segments of society. (OLIVEIRA; NEVES, 1986, p. 6)

With respect to education, the strong patronage feature in the States and municipalities in the Northeast has been used in the education sector to strengthen the bases of political support, in contrast to the guidelines of the federal executive:

The analysis of power between the various political and administrative organs, in an effort to implement capitalist expansion in the country, under the aegis of the State, has shown, however, that the process of modernization that educational unit is experiencing has not only preserved strong patronage at a local level, as it has been, in planning, an important link between that process and the maintenance of patronage structures. (OLIVEIRA; NEVES, p. 6)

This set of articles is aligned with a new approach on the economic development of underdeveloped countries that emerged from CELAC's approach. Gurrieri (1987) highlights some factors that have sparked these criticisms: "sociological analysis and the reflections caused by the so-called 'crisis of planning'".

The exposure of a sociological analysis within the CELAC framework has sought an "integrated approach" to development, which led to the power structures. The study of the historical transformations of not just economic, but also political, processes gave the opportunity for expression of conflicts and alliances between and among classes and social groups. Therefore, it was concluded that the economic and political styles that strengthen themselves correspond to expression of domination structures. The explanation of backwardness would be given, thus, not by unequal exchanges between central and peripheral countries, but through alliances of native classes with the interests of international capital.

From both perspectives, historical analysis and program of action, sociology derived towards the question of power: their major centers, their distribution in society, its various manifestations (economic, political, cultural, etc.). However, this effort did not result in a more detailed examination of the State apparatus and its activities because it concentrated on the social forces that were supposed to define the structure and orientation of the State. That is, they paid greater attention to the State corrupted as a system of domination than as an apparatus, the social and political forces that were trying to curb its institutional structure rather than the formation and functioning of it. (GURRIERI, 1987, p. 207)



The articles published in the Educational Planning section, in Cadernos de Pesquisa, were, for the most part, translations of booklets in the series Fundamentals of Educational Planning, of the IIPE, an institution linked to UNESCO, which had an important role in training specialists and in the spread of theoretical-methodological perspectives and experiences in the area of planning.

The articles, in undergoing two levels of analysis (the first, considering features regarding approach and type of text, and the second, focusing on the content) showed predominantly technical content in the period from 1972 to 1979, coinciding with the time in which Latin American countries appropriated planning techniques directed towards provisioning labor for economic development and meeting of social demands...

The second level of analysis identified three different approaches in relation to educational planning. While the first has an emphasis on the technical aspects of planning, the second focuses on the social and educational problems of underdeveloped countries, focusing on education reform processes. The change in topic moved the discussion from planning techniques to political and social issues.

The third focus is a critique of educational planning, subordinating the economic to its role as an instrument of organization of state policy.

It was observed that, historically, the approaches were aligned with processes of change in Latin American educational planning: the technical approach prevailed between 1972 and 1977; the educational and political, from 1975 to 1980 and the critical and sociological, in the years 1981-1986.

The educational project in Latin American countries in the 1960s has in general been linked to the economic and social development project, with labor improvement as its goal (AGUERRONDO; LAMARRA, 1978). Education was considered one of the foundations of the economic development project and the guarantee of objective conditions for implementation of educational planning would fall to the State, "independent of centers of political or ideological pressure, would place all social practices in the pursuit of the objectives outlined, through a technical body working in service of the State" (FERNANDES, 2006, p. 51).

The normative model of planning employed in this period entered into crisis beginning in 1970, along with the structuralist concept of CELAC about underdevelopment, due to the inability of this theory to link adjustment policies with development (VILLARREAL, 1987). There are several negative aspects of normative planning, as pointed out by scholars (LINSTONE, 1997; MATTOS, 1987, 1988; MATUS, 1987, 1993, 1997; VILLARREAL, 1987), which generally refer to technical, political and ideological problems of this model. Educational planning in the decades of 1960 and 1970, therefore, was a consequence of the economic approach, underlying the processes of developmental state intervention, which is called "capitalist economic planning" (HORTA, 1982, 1985). It created an expectation of social change, frustrated by subordination to economic plans, whose commitment to wealth indices generated a series of problems for educational systems, such as those discussed by the authors classified in the second group of articles.

The criticism of the theory of human capital and the economic reductionism of planning were added to social frustration, since education "did not democraticize opportunities, did not generate equality and did not diminish social injustice" (GENTILINI, 1999).

Initially fostering industrialization based on substitution of imports, the predominant state model during the period, namely the populist regime in Latin America, generated a movement marked by expansion of the private sector and the creation of new areas of investment, concentrated on "basic industry". Economic principles shaped by developmental policy of the State's intervention promoted the social division of work and altered demographics, increasing the popular urban sector and forming a working labor class (CARDOSO; FALLETO, 1970).

These changes in economy and social structure in developing countries correspond to the backdrop of reflections of the second group of papers published in Cadernos de Pesquisa, which advocated the need to understand political processes and incorporate into educational planning the social problems that created obstacles for plans that were successful.

Finally, planning is subjected to criticism, from a sociological perspective, which judges the neutrality of the normative economic planning and tries to understand the social structures of countries, marked by a history of colonialism, exploitation and formation of policies that are highly conservative and great concentrators of power.



AGUERRONDO, Inés. Formulación de política y planeamiento estratégico en la educación. Buenos Aires: IIPE, 2000.         [ Links ]

CARDOSO; Fernando H.; FALLETO, Enzo. Dependência e desenvolvimento na América Latina. Ensaio de interpretação sociológica. 7. ed. Rio de Janeiro: Guanabara, 1970.         [ Links ]

COOMBS, Philips. What is the educational planning? Belgium: Unesco; IIPE, 1970. (Fundamental of Education Planning Series; 1).         [ Links ]

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Received in: AUGUST 2014|
Approved for publication in: SEPTEMBER 2014



1 Habermas (1983) names this "effort" of instrumental rationality, defining it as application of the original logic of modern scientific rationality to social relations, in which the material conditions of production become a vital process.
2 The working procedure was mainly based on the article by Pimentel (2001).







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