PurposeThe purpose of this paper is to combine seemingly unrelated factors to explain global competitiveness. The study argues that school discipline and education investment affect competitiveness with the association being mediated by educational performance. Crucially, diachronic effects of discipline on performance are tested to demonstrate effects over time.Design/methodology/approachPartial least square (PLS) modelling is used to analyse the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development’s Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) data. The study further draws from World Bank data on Government Expenditure and World Economic Forum data on competitiveness. Five PISA dimensions of school discipline (students listening well, noise levels, teacher waiting time, students working well, class start time) are hypothesised to affect academic performance in reading, math and science, and to ultimately impact competitiveness.FindingsFindings confirm the relative importance of school discipline (88 per cent) in comparison to education investment (12 per cent) on educational performance, with both variables also being found to be significantly associated with competitiveness directly.Originality/valueThis study demonstrates the time effects of discipline, more specifically that discipline dimensions (students listen well in 2003 and students work well in 2009) are associated with competitiveness in 2012. Implications for school policy and further research are discussed.
International Journal of Educational Management – Emerald Publishing
Published: Apr 10, 2017
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