Government Failure: E.G. West on Education

211 Pages Posted: 19 Mar 2005

See all articles by James Tooley

James Tooley

University of Newcastle - E.G. West Centre

James Stanfield

University of Newcastle


This selection of E.G. West's papers contains a wealth of economic and philosophical analysis which can guide policymakers in the field of education. The papers show how state monopoly provision of education has led to a particular model of schooling which does not work for many of those who use the education system - parents and children.

Perhaps the most valuable contribution of these papers is their historical analysis. The extent to which education systems developed in the UK and the USA before either compulsory schooling or dominant state finance emerged is remarkable. E.G. West also analyses the debate between those who believe that the state should control education in order to shape the thinking of the younger generation, and those who believe in a pluralist system.

In an era when there is increasing dissatisfaction with state education provision, but in which the state has ever greater control of the curriculum, these papers have never been more relevant. The relevance to current policy debates is brought out in an introduction by Prof. James Tooley.

Keywords: education, schooling, deschooling, vouchers

JEL Classification: I20, I21, I28

Suggested Citation

Tooley, James and Stanfield, James, Government Failure: E.G. West on Education. IEA Occasional Paper No. 130, Available at SSRN: or

James Tooley (Contact Author)

University of Newcastle - E.G. West Centre ( email )

England, NE1 7RU
United Kingdom
0191 222 6374 (Phone)
07976 403113 (Fax)

James Stanfield

University of Newcastle ( email )

5 Barrack Road
Devonshire Building
NE1 7RU Newcastle upon Tyne, NE1 7RU
United Kingdom
+44 191 222 3503 (Phone)

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