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Larry Catá Backer W. Richard and Mary Eshelman Faculty Scholar and Professor of Law ; Professor of International Affairs Pennsylvania State University.

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Presentation on theme: "Larry Catá Backer W. Richard and Mary Eshelman Faculty Scholar and Professor of Law ; Professor of International Affairs Pennsylvania State University."— Presentation transcript:

1 Larry Catá Backer W. Richard and Mary Eshelman Faculty Scholar and Professor of Law ; Professor of International Affairs Pennsylvania State University © Larry Catá Backer 2011 Order, Discipline and Exigency: Cubas VIth Party Congress, the Lineamientos (Guidelines) and Structural Change in Education, Sport and Culture? Association for the Study of the Cuban Economy 2011 Annual Meeting August 2011

2 Order, Discipline and Exigency The Lineamientos de la política económica y social del partido y la Revolución The Lineamientos serve as a basis for reordering the failing economic framework within Cuban socialism. Although the Lineamientos focus predominantly on economic reform, the Lineamientos also addresses Social Politics (Política Social) Lineamientos Social Politics provisions stay true to Marxist-Leninist State-Party, but have the potential to significantly alter the social, economic and political organization of the Cuban State.

3 Order, Discipline and Exigency The Lineamientos de la política económica y social del partido y la Revolución A Blueprint in Contradiction This essay examines the Social Politics provisions of the Lineamientos and the tension created by the dueling goals of preserving the cultural gains of the Revolution whilst at the same time reigning in the cost of their preservation.

4 Order, Discipline and Exigency First, examine the development and structure of the Lineamientos provisions touching on Education Sport Culture Second, analysis of the Social Politics provisions of the Lineamientos: What the changes may mean for the future course of the development of Cuban state-Party ideology.

5 Order, Discipline and Exigency Failing Economic Model and the Development of the Lineamientos Acknowledgment that current system of state organization and economic model ineffective. Acknowledgment that something had to be done. First, limited opening up of sole proprietorships and small farm holding Second, development of the Lineamientos and public circulation (Autumn 2010). Party developed, State implemented.

6 Order, Discipline and Exigency Distribution and approval of the Lineamientos Widespread democratic circulation and consultation in and outside of Cuba Consideration and unanimous approval of the Lineamientos at VIth Party Congress of the Communist Party of Cuba 313 SectionsSuggestions for action affecting nearly every aspect of Cuban economic life. Companion booklet (Tabloide)--summarizes the changes between the draft Lineamientos and the official reasons for the changes.

7 Order, Discipline and Exigency Lineamientos Social Politics Section Five general provisions acknowledge the continuing importance of education, health, culture and sport as a central element of state policy. But current central policies must be bent to economic realities of the state Section 140 Preservation of social victories. Defensive, not forward looking

8 Order, Discipline and Exigency Lineamientos Social Politics Section Section 140: Defensive instead of forward looking. Urges for preservation of social victories Section 141: Acknowledges the pivotal role of labor for economic well-being of society. Section 142: Guarantees sustained elevation of services offered to public, but is explicit that State will live within its economic means.

9 Order, Discipline and Exigency Lineamientos Social Politics Section Section 143: Improvement will be measured against economic activity and based on the need to eliminate excessive costs in the social sphere. Important change from current system of measurement based on output regardless of cost. Excessive cost is left undefined. Education, sport, culture and public health programs will have to find positive means of revenue generation to supplement their operating costs Section 144: Requires State to pay particular attention to the study and development of strategies to address issues of Cubas aging population

10 Order, Discipline and Exigency Lineamientos Social Politics Section A Blueprint in Contradiction: Starts with a determination to preserve the gains of the Revolution but then bows to the realities of the economic situation that has brought the Party to the revaluation of its values. Guarantee changes to the system by which services are provided, but limit those promised changes to those possible under existing economic circumstances.

11 Order, Discipline and Exigency Cuban Education Development and centralization of education was substantial focus of the Revolution to which the Cuban government has devoted substantial resources: Education is free in Cuba Education is of high quality Largely due to long-term planning and stability characteristic of single party control Curriculum is developed by public sectors employment organizations and ministers of departments that will one day serve as employer. High Value given to the relation between work and study.

12 Order, Discipline and Exigency Lineamientos Education Provisions Works at the margins: Lineamientos do not seek to reorganize education or to change its central place in Cuban policy. Turning education into a more directly effective tool of economic activity and less as a social tool for creating the revolutionary citizen. Basic parameters set out in Section 145: Provides for further progress in raising the progress and content of education through better use of the workforce and physical capacity. Focus on improving quality of teachers and elevating their social status. Recognizes the role of the family in education of children.

13 Order, Discipline and Exigency Lineamientos Education Provisions Section 146: Focuses on improving quality of teacher training. Suggests that Cuba has now found that teacher training is not producing the sort of personnel necessary to import the knowledge and training now required of its students. Section 147: Continues to hint at the need for quality teachers by articulating the need to strengthen the role of professors in their classes. Acknowledges that Cuban education is falling behind in terms of ability to use innovative technology and the need to obtain equipment to use as a complement to teaching.

14 Order, Discipline and Exigency Lineamientos Education Provisions Section 148: Attempts to reduce the costs associated with primary and secondary special school systems by reducing the number of internal students and reducing the provision of transportation and meal services. Section 149: Seeks to adjust the capacity of the Red Escolar, and teachers in primary education, in line with economic and socio demographic factors and with consideration to the residence of the students.

15 Order, Discipline and Exigency Lineamientos Education Provisions Section 150: Greater focus on education in the service for the economic needs of the state. More focused on training of economically useful citizens and no longer a principal vehicle for the instruction of students in the ideological system of the state. Section 151: Focuses on the goal of increasing rigor and effectiveness of the educational process to increase the efficiency of the schools year

16 Order, Discipline and Exigency Lineamientos Education Provisions Section 152: Focuses on a reorientation of university education Provides for an updating of university research and training programs according to the needs of economic and social development of the country and new technologies. Calls for increased enrollment in agricultural careers, educational, technological and related sciences. Section 153: Focuses on cost cutting and efficiency. Limits state support of worker retraining and provides that worker retraining is to be accomplished during non-working hours and the employees expense.

17 Order, Discipline and Exigency Lineamientos Sport Provisions The Lineamientos make explicit the connection between sport and education in the appropriate development of the socialist citizen: Section 161: Declares the priority of sport and its integral role in education and calls for attention to be given to the mass practice of sport and physical activity. Calls for the reorganization of the sports system and the restructuring of its sports centers. Section 162: Recognizes the continued emphasis that should be placed on the development of internationally competitive athletes through the maintenance of rigor in training programs. However, as with the education guidelines, the sport provisions recognize the need to conserve resources and reorganize to save costs.

18 Order, Discipline and Exigency Lineamientos Culture Provisions Culture is an integral part of national identity and provides the last aspect of the Cuban educational project. The teaching of culture, and thus of a national identity, is crucial to preserve the identity of the state. Section 163: Encourages actions that will preserve cultural activity as a means to protect national identity and the cultural heritage of the nation. Directs the state to continue to encourage artistic and literary production and the ability of the population to appreciate artistic production. Section 164: Connects culture and education by directing the state to continue to produce professional teachers of art and art appreciation.

19 Order, Discipline and Exigency Lineamientos Culture Provisions A Blueprint in Contradiction: As was the case with the education and sport provisions, the guidelines touching on culture direct the state to both pull back, reorganize and change its behaviors in light of economic realities and also directs the state to preserve the quality of these programs, and even expand their reach and utility, but to do so with limited resources.

20 Order, Discipline and Exigency Moving Forward Complexity and Contradiction: Contradiction of the efforts to transform Cubas economic systems without changing its social systems. Nothing changes in the fundamentals of the organization of the Cuban state, yet everything changes within the context of that unchanging normative framework State continues to control sectors of production and retains a monopoly on operation in corporate form. The people are expected to engage in autonomous economic activity meant to generate wealth for themselves and the state (through taxation) and the Party is meant to provide the guidance.

21 Order, Discipline and Exigency Moving Forward Limited Liberalization Guarantees Continued State Control and Party Influence: Focus of the changes is on the creation of a class of sole proprietor. Liberalization occurs only at the lowest level of economic activity Activity with respect to which aggregation of labor or capital is not required. Large scale economic activity remains the sole province of the state. Principle objective of the state: convert workers from cost items to revenue generators.

22 Order, Discipline and Exigency Moving Forward From Cost Item to Income Generator: The Cuban government hopes that a rationalization of public services provided will increase productivity via citizens sense of the necessity to work as a means of generating income The Cuban government hopes that people will have a larger assortment of goods and services available and the state will not be burdened with the subsidies necessary to provide these items. Moreover, the revenue generated is not only available to the income generators, but also to the state in the form of taxes.

23 Order, Discipline and Exigency Moving Forward Change at the Margins: Changes to the Cuban political economy assumes a coherent shape that is hardly revolutionary or otherwise points to a rejection of its current framework. The State retains control in three ways: First, individual aggregation of economic power is prohibited. Second, the State limits occupations for which private activity is permitted. Third, the State tightly controls markets open to private activity.

24 Order, Discipline and Exigency Moving Forward Continued Contradiction and Inherent Challenges: Many of the economic provisions, and the overarching purpose of the Lineamientos, will make it difficult to preserve and improve the Cuban education system in its current form. First, the current economic and institutional model is unsustainable. There is little in the form of institutional structures to produce and absorb change. This will make sport and cultural moneymaking schemes harder to succeed. Second, the partial opening of the market may present difficulty in predicting industries and technologies upon which to direct limited resources. The issue of CORRUPTION remains problematican internal CCP concern but still reluctant to go public on corruption; compare China.

25 Order, Discipline and Exigency Moving Forward Continued Contradiction and Inherent Challenges: Third, it is uncertain whether Cuban government can develop curriculum that is effective in producing citizens motivated by economic necessity without obliterating social equality and state economic control. Beyond agriculture and bio tech, it is not clear that the state can anticipate and move resources for long term education-labor market dynamic. Fourth, the fall in the status and compensation of teachers will make it increasingly difficult to recruit high caliber people to educate Cubas next generation. Teacher status serves as evidence of the difficulty of maintaining one of the principle triumphs of the Revolution. Addressing education reform (teacher status and connection between education and planned economy), the production of high end culture (and cultural control of Cuban society), and sport as an expression of Cuban physical triumph will substantially change all three or make each increasingly.

26 Order, Discipline and Exigency Conclusion The Educational Landscape Suggested by the Lineamientos: Teachers are no longer as well respected and their place within the social order has been significantly diminished. State concerned about the loss of control of culture other than for export culture. Brick and mortar expenditures have become a drag on the ability of the state to deliver education effectively. Financial drag on education reform. Cuba is facing the consequences of globalization and the technological revolution that made globalization possible. The focus on technology in the classroom suggests both recognition of the vital importance of technology in education todayespecially technology that feeds into the needs of the employment sector.

27 Order, Discipline and Exigency Conclusion The Educational Landscape Suggested by the Lineamientos: The Lineamientos emphasis on the role of family in education suggests a willingness to privatize education in a way that may open the door to greater flexibility in the formation of Cuban citizens. The Lineamientos continue a long tradition of centralized state control of education. Flexibility but no fundamental change The emphasis on the connection between education, culture, and sport and revenue generation can have a significant effect on the delivery of these services to the population. That can range from the development of entrepreneurialism among providers of education, sport and cultural activities, to the development of fee structures that can detrimentally affect the quality principle of delivery of educational services.


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