Editing the Cloudworks blogs for inclusion here is a time-consuming task, as we need to locate and re-create url links, which are numerous in some of the articles. If an item you need is not yet 'live' here, please contact NICEC website

In most cases, the description here is using Bill’s words as he described these blogs on his career-learning café website. Where there was no such description, we have added the opening paragraph of the article.

no exit

few public services are more used to shifting politics than careers work - but few shifts are as radical as leaving the EU - there are no clear signposts to the agile but muddled refocusing of priorities - issues range from LGBT rights to the neglected expertise of young people - the citizenry needs uncovered the hidden back-stories of vested interests - & to be able to make good use of whatever bad news it finds - conventional careers work can't be expected to deal with this - it needs the reach & grasp of mainstream curriculum

what future for Europe?

there's no shortage of talk - much of it pantomime, smokescreen & deception - the outcome will most affect our children, grandchildren & great-grandchildren - it's a narrative, where what they find then will provoke the questions they ask about now - so how will careers work professionalism feature in that talk?

education & welfare

they are entwined - at times raising life-&-death issues for the poor, who are too often stigmatised as scroungers by the comfortable - neo-liberal austerity is sharpening these conflicts of interest - a twenty-first century professionalism must call on an inclusive civil society, strengthening working & civil rights - while enabling independent minds, critical thinking & creativity

careers-work leadership - a trio on trial

there's a lot to disagree about in education - with conflicting priorities & many ways of dealing with them - so the call from a prominent trio is for more leaders - each claiming to know how to find them - but do leaders know better than followers about what's going on & what to do about it - & anyway how do followers figure the facts, the opinions & the bases for action? - there's evidence on this, but it won't take the trio to where they want to go - even if they can agree about it - It finds reliable bases for action - especially in learning from mistakes

new deals for careers work

is careers work running out of road? - technologies, politics & cultures are re-routing the ways people live - so where is careers work to go? - the temptation is to revisit past achievements, but it's a blind alley - careers work is at its best when it re-aligns expert action to changing experience - & that new deal depends on local talking-and-listening conversations between educators, their stakeholders with their students & clients

holding on and letting go

probing whether embedding skills for employability actually hinders the creativity of ready-for-anything flexibility - the issue is convention or reform - which leads up twentieth-century blind alleys and which finds twenty-first-century ways forward?

why fail?

things go wrong, so we learn how to fix them - that's the story in education for citizenship, for working life & for politics - but why would people then embrace a myth & reject the reality? - especially when they are dealing with movements that ignore their experience, disdain their needs and deny their interests? - is it a failure of education? - can people learn to make good use of bad news? - & to re-write the narrative?

a glimpse of the future

setting out a polemic for careers work - compelling stuff intended to galvanise change - the early-days issues for unemployment, local government & work creation - provoking contemporary issues: is careers work an institution to defend or a movement for reform? - whose interests does it serve & what must it oppose? - why is there so little agreement about this? - it tracks the twentieth-century failure which brought about the twenty-first-century careers-work mess - for the now-and-future, will the last careers-work leader standing be empty handed? - or point to where careers work enables the independent minds, critical thinking & creative invention that makes for ready-for-anything flexibility?

objecting bodies

feminism raises issues on who-gets-to-do-what in society - these are careers-work issues - & this is a wave-by-wave account of feminism's progress - fully-referenced & linked, the account ranges from Suffragette respectability to Pussy-Riot shock - it probes how progress has worked differently for the rich & the poor - it documents the influences of the press, tv, the internet and Hollywood - condescending patriarchy, masculine backlash & political manipulation live there, and objecting bodies does not spare them - the account is peppered with engaging quotations which enable students & their educators to work together on what feminism can now do for objecting bodies

making the most of life's design

life design is a useful programme enabling people to become agents of career success in an increasingly career-challenging world - it's a vigorous project, based in America - the process engages psychological constructs to catalyse career development - it's good stuff, & with some European help it can be better - mainly by working on how career-management autonomy can expand this career-development programme - an expanded life design will then engage students and educators in new and more inclusive ways of finding out what's going on - & firing up a more complete apparatus for dealing with it

careers workers as agents of history

independence of mind, critical thinking and discontented creativity - how they are acknowledged, welcomed and learned from - when the discomfort of failure helps - and why regressive tendencies need to be met with progressive wake-ups - was there ever a time when all this were more needed?

figuring out the future for the careers profession

by establishing the facts, illustrating the thinking, the factors & the trends - & reflecting on what each means in students' and clients' lives - & only then setting out future possibilities

reforming careers-work partnerships

because its professions are facing make-or-break issues - & its clients & students are navigating unprecedented levels of change & complexity - this is a necessary scrutinising of the claims that careers work makes, the roles it has developed, the cultures it inhabits & the thinking it holds to - it points to untapped resources and links for enabling students & clients to claim their citizenship, manage their working lives & find fulfilment

catching up with career management - whose voices are heeded? what interests are served? & who can afford hope?

work-life needs a distinction between career development & career management - the former is what careers workers do to help - the latter what students & clients make of it - the two do not exactly correspond - & in a changing world we should worry when they do - educators & careers workers & their leaders need to catch up with the sense that clients & students make of learning & work - there is no single answer to the questions raised here - & none is simple - but any answer must take account of the politics of whose voices are heeded & what interests are served & who can afford hope

renewing the politics of education - how nations failed education - how cities liberate it - & how shock will set the agenda

probing what politicians do... & examining how educators find a better politics - probing whether people are fair to politicians ... & examining how educators scan their narratives for authentic voices - probing how to test for authenticity ...& examining how raising aspirations is a demanding test - probing the complexity for political focus ... & examining curriculum as community property - probing policy stories for their meaning ... & examining how educators' develop liberating backstories - probing why educators seize on shocks ... & examining how that connects to students in imagining new possibilities - probing what cities have that education needs ... & examining how student work with educators on making sense of experience

students - their educators - & the business-world - which way is forward?

probing whether there is an attempt at curriculum capture - no educator can afford to ignore that - exposing the doubts, the conflicts, and the role of a careers-work think-tank - showing how wider social-world perspectives find stronger bases for student-educator-employer partnerships - there are no heroes or villains here, just causes worth identifying and effects to be dealt with - explaining how genuine partnerships work best not on 'how-to-do!' prescriptions but on 'what-went-wrong?' diagnoses

what can politics do for education?

covering the bases on how politics & education interact, and don't - with part two leading to an interrogation of 'politicians', 'policy makers' & 'performers' - & a probing of the emerging case for educators to ignore state governments & find new friends

why don’t the poor listen to us?

Opening paragraph: The ‘on-yer-bike’ hypothesis of career management is back: if there’s no work where you live, then live where there’s work.   We are, it says, a socially-stratified society because poor people are rooted: social mobility and geographic mobility are the same thing.  With her childhood in a council-housing, Lynsey Hanley sees that rootedness as entrapping.  Guardian journo Simon Jenkins agrees.  So does Norman Tebbit’s dad.

‘Billy’: who's that kid in the café?  – role and identity in careers work

Opening paragraph: It’s increasingly argued that we each have more than one identity.  This is not about schizophrenia, it’s about adaptability.  It says we are each capable of developing a new self to meet each new situation.  The thinking goes down well wherever self-belief, independence and individuality are applauded.  Ideas of re-making self also accord well with contemporary calls for greater flexibility, creativity and risk-taking.

careers-work creativity - the fizz and the burn?

Opening paragraph: Since this is an innovation website, it might be worth giving careers-work creativity a bit of thought.  There’s no shortage of words.  And ‘innovation’ is one.   But there is also ‘inventiveness’.   And ’novelty’ - though I can’t see why doing something not done before is necessarily creative.  What we know for sure is that sticking with the way things are is not creative. 

Bill ended this list on his website with these words

...'as far as your imagination & commitment will take you...'

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