Mathias Urban

PROF

Profile Photo
Mathias Urban, PhD, is Desmond Chair of Early Childhood Education, and Director of the Early Childhood Research Centre (ECRC) at Dublin City University, Ireland (DCU). He works on questions of policy related to diversity and equality, social justice, evaluation and professionalism in education and care systems for young children, families and communities in diverse socio-cultural contexts. Before joining DCU Mathias held the position of Froebel Professor of Early Childhood Studies and Director of the Early Childhood Research Centre at the University of Roehampton, London, United Kingdom.

Mathias is Honorary Professor at the University of Roehampton, London, UK, Professor II at the University of Stavanger, Norway, Visiting Professor at the Nacional University of Colombia and at Universidad de La Sabana, Colombia, at Universidad de San Andrés, Buenos Aires, Argentina, and Affiliate Professor and Fellow at EDPolicyFORWARD: The Center for Educational Policy at George Mason University, VA, USA.

Mathias has 20 years experience in designing and leading international collaborative research projects. He has a well-established track record of publications in international peer-reviewed journals; his work has been classified as ‘world leading’ and ‘internationally excellent’ in the context of the Research Excellence Framework (REF) of the United Kingdom.
In 2018, Mathias was awarded the ‘Marianne Bloch Distinguished Career Award’ by the international Reconceptualising Early Childhood Education network.

From 2010 to 2011 he coordinated the European CoRe project (Competence Requirements in Early Childhood Education and Care). His current and recent projects include collaborative studies on early childhood systems and governance in Europe and Latin America, studies on Privatisation and on the impact of Assessment Regimes, and an 11-country project on Governance and Leadership for Competent Systems in Early Childhood.

Mathias is the lead author of the 2018 (Argentina), 2019 (Japan) and 2020 (Saudi Arabia) G20/T20 early childhood development, education and care policy briefs, and a member of the European Commission expert working group on Early Childhood Education and Care.
Mathias is Chair of the DECET network (Diversity in Early Childhood Education and Training) and was President of the International Froebel Society (IFS) from 2016-2019.

Other Journal

Year Publication
2007 Urban, M. (2007) 'Strategies for Change: reflections from a systemic, comparative research project' .

Book

Year Publication
2016 Vandenbroeck, M., Urban, M. & Peeters, J. (2016) Pathways to Professionalism in Early Childhood Education and Care. London: Routledge.
2012 Murrray, C. & Urban, M. (2012) Diversity and Equality in Early Childhood. Dublin: Gill& Macmillan.
2011 Miller, L., Dalli, C. & Urban, M. (2011) Early Childhood grows up. Towards a critical ecology of the profession. Dordrecht and London: Springer.
2010 Urban, M. & Dalli, C. (2010) Professionalism in Early Childhood Education and Care: international perspectives. London: Routledge.
2010 Moss, P. & Urban, M. (2010) Democracy and Experimentation: two fundamental values for education. Guetersloh: Bertelsmann Stiftung.
2009 Urban, M. (2009) Early Childhood Education in Europe: Achievements, Challenges and Possibilities. Brussels: Education International – L’Internationale de L’Éducation.

Peer Reviewed Journal

Year Publication
2020 Arndt, Sonja; Smith, Kylie; Urban, Mathias; Ellegard, Tomas; Blue Swadener, Beth; Murray, Colette (2020) 'Reconceptualising and (re)forming early childhood professional identities: Ongoing transnational policy discussions'. Policy Futures in Education, .
2020 Moss, Peter & Urban, Mathias (2020) 'The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development’s International Early Learning and Child Well-being Study: The scores are in!'. Contemporary Issues in Early Childhood, 18 (2):250-258. Link
2018 Urban, Mathias (2018) 'Editorial'. European Early Childhood Education Research Journal, 26 (3).
2017 Urban, M. (2017) 'We need meaningful, systematic evaluation, not a preschool PISA'. Global Education Review, .
2017 Urban, M. & Swadener, B. (2017) 'Democratic accountability and contextualised systemic evaluation. A comment on the OECD initiative to launch an International Early Learning Study (IELS)'. International Critical Childhood Policy Studies, .
2017 Moss, P., & Urban, M. (2017) 'The OECD’s International Early Learning Study: what happened next'. Contemporary Issues in Early Childhood, .
2016 Urban, M. (2016) 'At Sea: what direction for critical early childhood research?'. Journal of Pedagogy, .
2016 Urban, M. (2016) 'At sea: What direction for critical early childhood research?'. Journal of Pedagogy, 7 (1):107-121.
2016 Jones, L., Urban, M., Osgood, J. & Holmes, R. (2016) 'Reimagining Quality in Early Childhood'. Contemporary Issues in Early Childhood, .
2016 Urban, M. (2016) 'Editorial'. Journal of Pedagogy, .
2016 Urban, M. (2016) 'Sufficiently well informed and seriously concerned? European Union policy responses to marginalisation, structural racism and institutionalised exclusion in early childhood'. Alberta Journal of Educational Research, .
2016 Urban, M. (2016) 'Resisting ‘normal science’ in educational research'. Journal of Pedagogy, .
2015 Urban, M. (2015) 'From ‘closing the gap’ to an ethics of affirmation. Reconceptualising the role of early childhood services in times of uncertainty'. European Journal of Education, .
2014 Urban, M. (2014) 'Not solving problems, managing messes: competent systems in early childhood education and care'. Management in Education, .
2014 Jones, L., Osgood, J., Urban, M., Holmes, M. & MacLure, M. (2014) 'Eu(rope): (Re)assembling, (Re)casting, and (Re)aligning Lines of De- and Re-territorialisation of Early Childhood'. International Review of Qualitative Research, .
2012 Urban, M. (2012) 'Researching early childhood policy and practice: a critical ecology'. European Journal of Education, .
2012 Urban, M. (2012) 'Editorial'. European Journal of Education, .
2012 Urban, M., Vandenbroeck, M., Van Laere, K., Lazzari, A. & Peeters, J. (2012) 'Towards competent systems in early childhood education and care. Implications for policy and practice'. European Journal of Education, .
2010 Urban, M. (2010) 'Rethinking Professionalism in Early Childhood: untested feasibilities and critical ecologies'. Contemporary Issues in Early Childhood, .
2008 Urban, M. (2008) 'Dealing with uncertainty: challenges and possibilities for the early childhood profession'. European Early Childhood Education Research Journal, .
2008 Urban, M. & Dalli, C. (2008) 'Professionalism in Early Childhood Education and Care'. European Early Childhood Education Research Journal, .

Blog

Year Publication
2020 Urban, Mathias & Moss, Peter (2020) A testing challenge for early childhood. BLOG Link
2015 Urban, M. (2015) Cui bono? The myth of the closing gap and the need for radical reconceptualisation of early childhood research. BLOG

Published Report

Year Publication
2017 Urban, M., Robson, S., & Scacchi, V. (2017) Review of Occupational Role Profiles in Ireland in Early Childhood Education and Care. Early Childhood Research Centre (ECRC), .
2015 Urban, M. & Rubiano, C. (2015) Privatisation in Early Childhood Education. An explorative study on impacts and implications. Education International, .
2011 Urban, M., Vandenbroeck, M., Van Laere, K., Lazzari, A. & Peeters, J. (2011) Competence requirements in early childhood education and care. Research documents. European Commission, .
2011 Urban, M., Vandenbroeck, M., Van Laere, K., Lazzari, A. & Peeters, J. (2011) Competence requirements in early childhood education and care. Final report. European Commission, .

Book Chapter

Year Publication
2020 Urban, Mathias (2020) 'Common Good and Public Service. Crisis lessons for the future of early childhood education and care' In: Dublin : Education Matters.
2018 Urban, Mathias (2018) '(D)evaluation of early childhood education and care? A critique of the OECDs International Early Learning Study' In: Brussels : Alliance for Childhood.
2016 Urban, M. (2016) 'Starting Wrong? The trouble with a debate that just won’t go away' In: New York : Peter Lang.
2015 Urban, M. & Murray, C. (2015) 'Internationale samenwerking: onderlinge steun en solidariteit' In: Amsterdam : SWP.
2015 Urban, M. (2015) 'A pedagogy based on critical consciousness and democratic values' In: Florence : Istituto degli Innocenti.
2015 Urban, M. (2015) 'Starting wrong? A critical perspective on the latest permutation of the debate on the quality of early childhood provision' In: Brussels : Alliance for Childhood European Network Foundation.
2014 Urban, M. (2014) 'Learning from the Margins: Early Childhood Imaginaries, ‘Normal Science’, and the Case for a Radical Reconceptualisation of Research and Practice' In: New York : Peter Lang Publishers.
2013 Urban, M. (2013) 'Professionalitaet und Kompetenz in der fruehkindlichen Bildung, Betreuung und Erziehung: systemisch, politisch und dialogorientiert' In: Luxembourg : Caritas.
2013 Urban, M. (2013) 'Sistemas competentes en la educación de la primera infancia' In: Bogotá : Universidad Santo Tomás.
2012 Urban, M., & Dalli, C. (2012) 'A profession speaking - and thinking - for itself' In: Dordrecht and London : Springer.
2010 Urban, M. & Dalli, C. (2010) 'Conclusion: Towards new understandings of the early years' profession: the need for a critical ecology' In: London : Routledge.
2010 Urban, M. (2010) 'Zones of Professional Development: arguments for reclaiming practice-based evidence in early childhood practice and research' In: Newcastle-upon- Tyne : Cambridge Scholars.
2010 Urban, M. (2010) 'Duurzame verandering: professioneel leren in een kritische leergemeenschap' In: Amsterdam : SWP.
2008 Urban, M. (2008) 'Wissenschaftliche Begleitung in kommunalen Netzwerken' In: Gütersloh : Bertelsmann Stiftung.
2008 Urban, M. (2008) 'Critical Thinking in Forschung, Praxis und Politik: Der Joint European Master in Early Childhood Education and Care' In: Opladen : Budrich.
2005 Urban, M. (2005) 'Quality, Autonomy and the Profession' In: Dublin : Centre for Early Childhood Development & Education.

Online Article

Year Publication
2015 Urban, M. (2015) A Competent System?. ELEA
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