The Caroline Benn Memorial Lecture 2015

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This year’s lecture had an international perspective. It looked at why it is that education is not making the contribution that we would hope for towards more equal and democratic societies worldwide.

Susan Robertson explained to a packed House of Commons meeting room that she would “consider three ways in which this is occurring in education: the deepening involvement of profit-making firms in education provision; the promotion of private interests in national and global education policy-making spaces; and the enclosure of political space that limits public scrutiny and accountability”.

Professor Susan Robertson
Professor Susan Robertson

The lecture delivered on November 10th 2015 by Professor  Robertson of Bristol University centred on the interface between education, politics and economic pressures. You can read more about her work at

This year’s lecture, chaired by Melissa Benn and attended by other members of the Benn family, was a stimulating and thought-provoking event, addressing as it did one of the fundamental challenges facing those who are committed to seeing education as a liberating and democratising force in society – something that was of course fundamental to Caroline’s work and beliefs.


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