Social Production Models vs Prescription

I was listening to Yochai Benkler's interview with Russ Roberts on his podcast discussing regulatory frameworks for national infrastructure and realized that conservative arguments often include a call to principles for guidance whereas researchers demand examination of evidence.

Roberts is a libertarian and Keyensian economist who makes an assumption that regulation is always going to stifle innovation. But Benkler proved by using evidence between 2000 and 2010 that lack of regulation has taken the U.S. from first or second to about fifteenth in network speed, access, and cost.

In education, we are faced with a similar situation. Probably not for the same reasons. Unfortunately, education reform has a history of panic and prescription.

Careful examination of evidence can allow us to create a community from which to foster change. It is our ability to create community, the freedom to do so, that is important. Not restriction, but freedom that creates the ability to innovate.

In a highly restrictive environment, any tiny move can be seen as a huge one because we are focusing on conflict rather than cooperation. These tiny moves have no cumulative effect because they are not mutually reinforcing.

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