Postformal Education: A Philosophy for Complex Futures


"This is the most compelling book on education I have read for many years. It has major implications for all who are in a position to influence developments in teacher education and educational policy. Gidley is one of the very rare scholars who can write intelligently and accessibly about the past, present and future in education. I was challenged and ultimately convinced by her contention that ‘what masquerades as education today must be seen for what it is – an anachronistic relic of the industrial past’. Gidley’s challenge is to ‘co-evolve’ a radically new education. All who seek to play a part must read this book."
- Brian J. Caldwell, PhD. Educational Transformations, former Dean of Education at the University of Melbourne and Deputy Chair, Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA)

“This is the book we have all been waiting for and should be read by educators, policy makers and everyone interested in the future through the transformative power of education in creating a wiser, more caring world with a vibrant future. This path-breaking book synthesizes the new thinking of philosophers in diverse areas of knowledge of the 20th century into a new model of integral education for a 21st century Integrative Age. There are many books on what is wrong with education but few on how to make fundamental systemic change.”
- David K. Scott, PhD. Former Chancellor, University of Massachusetts at Amherst. Leading thinker on integrating science and spirituality, co-editor: “Integrative Learning and Action: A Call to Wholeness” (2006) Peter Lang Publishers.

“Jennifer Gidley is one of the most provocative and important thinkers in education today. Her vision draws on the epic story of the evolution of consciousness as she presents us with the past, present and possible future of education. Interweaving ancient wisdom and the latest research, Gidley articulates an inspiring new and radical revisioning of the nature, mission, and role of education.”
- Alfonso Montuori, PhD. Professor Transformative Studies Department, School of Consciousness and Transformation, California Institute of Integral Studies, San Francisco. Editor: “Journeys in Complexity” (2014) Routledge)

“An extraordinary triumph of scholarship that builds a bridge from the past to the future. It envisions futures of wisdom and gifts readers with everyday applicable concepts, empowering them to articulate a new world and language it into being.”
- Earl de Blonville, FRGS. Founder, Postformal Leadership “One of the top six leadership thinkers in Australia” – BRW 2012

“This important book is a labour of love that brims with profound thought, wide ranging research, an overarching spiritual vision and commitment to an educational renaissance that is desperately needed around our troubled world. By linking the evolution of consciousness, aesthetic values, child-development, the art of teaching, post-formal thinking, contemplative insights and social commitment it is a resource of great value. For today’s educational activists, who are concerned about the narrowness and over-competiveness that passes as educational policy in so many countries, it provides a solid and inspiring foundation for us to continue working in order to create an education that our children really need and deserve.”
- Christopher Clouder, FRSA, co-editor: “The Future of Childhood” (2000) Hawthorn Press. CEO - European Council for Steiner Waldorf Education (1991 – 2011). Pedagogical Director: Il Liceo dei Colli, Florence, Italy)

“It is with great enthusiasm that I read Jennifer Gidley’s masterful work that develops thought about education to a new level! The old, almost mechanistic, view of education must make way for what Gidley calls “postformal education” if we are to shape a rich future for human development. I’m surprised it took only ten years to write this amazing book, one that could turn thinking about education around. I could not ask for a better application of postformal theory!”
- Jan D. Sinnott, PhD. Professor of Psychology, Towson University, Maryland, USA. Author of “The Development of Logic in Adulthood: Postformal Thought and Its Applications” (1998) Springer.