By: Carlos Diaz Barriga (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Reading about the doctrine of ‘free flow’ information, the basis for the modernization theory, and how it was used to help develop Third World nations, reminded me of the state of education currently in my country, Mexico.
The inconsistencies with the modernization theory are well documented, for example, when it failed to recognize the disparity of wealth among the social classes in these nations (Thussu, 44). This failure is particularly applicable when studying the topic of education in Mexico.
In Mexico, income disparity is still a big issue. According to a report from El Daily Post, “the richest 10 percent earn 30.5 times more than the poorest 10 percent”. ‘Free-flow’ information and exposure to modern media to expand education in Third World countries sounds good on paper, but it fails to recognize the obstacles each particular country is facing when it’s put on practice.
According to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), in 2014, Mexico was the sole country in the organization where 15-29 year-olds are expected to spend more time in employment than in education. This fact alone tells you a lot about the way people live their lives and what their priorities are.
Work is more necessary than education; people don’t always see the benefits of getting educated. The OECD states that “in Mexico, higher educational attainment does not necessarily translate into better labor market outcomes”.
Why would citizens choose education if it’s not going to provide them with better opportunities?
This also coincides with the other discrepancy of the modernization theory, in which it disregards traditional lifestyles in favor for modern ones (Thussu, 45). Grouping a whole bunch of different nations, calling them Third World countries, and expecting the same outcomes when helping with their development, is probably why the theory needed to be reformulated.