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Archive for the 'International development' Category

Climate change education: what happened at COP27 and what happens next?

Blog Editor, IOE Digital23 November 2022

Photo: UNFCC via Creative Commons

Kate Greer and Nicola Walshe, Centre for Climate Change and Sustainability Education (CCCSE).

So, how was COP?

Good…? Exhausting…? Productive…? Challenging…?

It is difficult to sum up the experience of attending the annual UN Climate Change Conference of the Parties, or COP. COP can be heartwarming and heartbreaking. It can leave you feeling determined and despairing. Motivated and overwhelmed. Fearful and hopeful. All at the same time. Intertwined with the tangle of feelings that we bring home from our experience at COP27 in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt, one thing is (relatively) clear. This year, COP27 resulted in good news for education. Through an immense collaborative effort of Member Parties and Observers, progress was made towards implementing an internationally coordinated educational response to climate change. Here, we briefly reflect on this achievement and its implications for climate change education in England and further afield.

Of foremost importance for education is that at COP27 countries agreed to a new global Action Plan on Action for Climate Empowerment, or ACE. ACE is the term used to describe a broad area of work set out in the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (1992) and the Paris Agreement (2015) which includes education alongside five other elements: (more…)

We need more research about the South, from the South

Blog Editor, IOE Digital4 August 2022

Colombian vice-president Francia Márquez, justiceforcolombia.com

Mainstream media barely reported the election of Francia Márquez, an Afro-Colombian woman from the bottom of the economic hierarchy, as Colombian vice-president.

Leda Kamenopoulou.

If we are serious about decolonising education, we must prioritise research from the South, and fund it properly.

Decolonising’ academia means challenging the dominance of knowledge produced by historically privileged contexts and groups, and it is a trend that has taken higher education by storm. In the last year alone, I noticed numerous conferences, workshops, seminars, projects and reading groups, all focused on decolonising education, psychology, curricula and reading lists, research methods and ethics, teaching and learning.

At IOE’s Department of Psychology and Human Development, we have just set up an ‘epistemic justice working group’ to help us address the power imbalances between North and South in knowledge production and sharing, by reflecting on our curricula, teaching practice, and research. It is important to clarify that ‘North’ and ‘South’ do not necessarily denote geographical location. Instead, the ‘South’ is a metaphor for spaces historically characterised by inequality, poverty, and economic, political and cultural disadvantage.

In this post, I argue that these decolonisation-themed activities will remain empty rhetoric until we are prepared to see the South as of equal value (more…)

IOE at 120: Empire, decolonisation, modernisation and dislocation – 1952-1962

Blog Editor, IOE Digital24 June 2022

Beryl Gilroy with her pupils; she was given an honorary fellowship in 2000

Beryl Gilroy at Beckford primary school in north London in 1971. Photograph: Beryl Gilroy Estate

This blog is the sixth in a series of 12 exploring each decade in IOE’s history in the context of the education and society of the times. Find out more about our 120th anniversary celebrations on our website, and follow us on TwitterInstagramFacebook and LinkedIn to keep up with everything that’s happening.

Elaine Unterhalter.

Many historical strands weave through the 1950s, but the end of Empire and grappling with what colonial education and decolonisation entailed were key themes at IOE.

Understanding the 1950s at IOE requires trying to bring together two threads: inclusive education for modernising societies and the relationships of colonialism, built on economic and political dispossession associated with slavery, land seizure, economic exploitation, racial discrimination and cultural hierarchy.

The involvement of IOE with Britain’s colonial projects stretches back to the 1920s. A Colonial Department was formally established in 1927, aiming to train teachers and support education policy work for the Colonial Office. In 1952, as part of a series of lectures organised to mark the Golden Jubilee anniversary of IOE, Sir Christopher Cox, educational adviser to the Colonial Office, delivered a lecture celebrating the ‘increasing importance’ of (more…)

Refugee Week: How can we improve the Asylum system?

Blog Editor, IOE Digital21 June 2022

In Doncaster, much of the dispersal housing lies in outlying areas with few services

Mette Louise Berg

Photo by Rasha Kotaiche

This is Refugee Week – a celebration of ‘the contributions, creativity and resilience of refugees and people seeking sanctuary’ around the world.

These are difficult times for those seeking sanctuary across the Global North. In the UK specifically, asylum is a contentious and politicised issue, and we only rarely hear and listen to the voices of people who seek asylum. In research for the report we are launching this week, we worked with a group of people with personal experience of the asylum system and organisations supporting them in Doncaster and Halifax in Yorkshire, two dispersal towns. We asked questions about housing, and the way they are being (more…)

How do we make sure the most disadvantaged children get a good education during public health emergencies?

Blog Editor, IOE Digital7 February 2022

Kendra Pyne, Yi Shi and Mukdarut Bangpan.

School support to build children’s resilience and boost their analytical skills could help to mitigate the inequalities that have increased during the pandemic. This is one of the broad range of interventions highlighted by our analysis of 52 research projects from around the world published in the International Journal of Educational Research.

As schools shut their doors during the Covid-19 pandemic, educational systems around the world have been struggling to provide continuity of teaching and uphold the quality and inclusiveness of education. While school disruption has affected all communities in terms of livelihoods, learning and economic opportunities, and psychological health, people living in disadvantaged situations are more likely to suffer from the most detrimental consequences.

Such disparity has led to a series of unanswered questions in the context of public health emergencies: what action has been (more…)

How better education for health professionals can help curb antimicrobial resistance in poorer countries and save lives

Blog Editor, IOE Digital16 June 2021

Three unfocused overlapping petri dishes containing bacteria seen through a microscopeAllison Littlejohn.

While the world’s attention is focused on Covid-19, many other serious international health concerns still need urgent attention. Few public health problems are of greater global importance today than Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR).

In 2019 the UN Ad hoc Interagency Coordinating Group on AMR warned that, if no action is taken, drug-resistant diseases could cause 10 million additional deaths each year by 2050 and cause catastrophic damage to the global economy, forcing up to 24 million people into extreme poverty.

Over the past three years I have been the Academic Director of the ‘Tackling AntiMicrobial Resistance’, a project aimed at reducing AMR in low and middle income countries by improving healthcare practice in the use and monitoring of antibiotics. Funded by the Department of Health and Social Care (more…)

Measuring children’s development in low and middle income countries: getting it right

Blog Editor, IOE Digital21 May 2021

Bernie Munoz, Julie Dockrell, Lynn Ang and Jessica Massonnié.

How do we measure young children’s development and the quality of their learning environments in low and middle income countries (LMICs)? This answer is key for researchers, practitioners, field workers and NGOs working with children as there is a pressing need to prevent childhood ‘stunting’ in these countries.

Childhood stunting is the impaired growth and development that children experience because of poor nutrition, repeated infection, and inadequate psychosocial stimulation.

Through a systematic review (SR) soon to be published in the Journal of Early Childhood Research, we identified 43 current tools: 34 for assessing children’s (more…)

International Women’s Day: what now for girls’ access to education around the world?

Blog Editor, IOE Digital5 March 2021

IOE Events.

For our latest public debate we returned to the matter of Covid-19, this time the pandemic’s impact on girls’ access to education in the developing world. To assess that impact and the immense task of ‘building back better’, we were joined by an international panel of leading figures from the development community: Alice Albright, CEO of the Global Partnership for Education; Marelize Gorgens, Senior Specialist at the World Bank; Girish Menon, CEO of STiR Education; and Elaine Unterhalter, Professor of Education and International Development, and Co-Director of the Centre for Education and International Development (CEID), at the IOE.  You can find out more about our speakers here.

The task is a profound and urgent one, with estimates that around 24 million girls will never return to school following the pandemic, with marked and long-term consequences. This is in addition to those who were already outside education. As with much else, the pandemic has exposed existing fault lines in relation to girls’ education around the world. What was striking from the discussion was how much had previously been placed (more…)

Global learning: is ‘Teaching at the Right Level’ a good buy?

Blog Editor, IOE Digital23 November 2020

Angela W Little, Republished from UKFIET, the education and development forum.

In 1900, the comparative educationist Michael Sadler wrote:

“We cannot wander at pleasure among the educational systems of the world, like a child strolling through a garden and pick a off a flower from one bush and some leaves from another, and then expect that if we stick what we have gathered into the soil at home, we shall have a living plant.”

Nowadays, the ‘children’ who wander the garden include philanthropists, NGOs, trade unions, international and comparative educationists, international businessmen and businesswomen, as well as the all important country policymakers and politicians.

Through their recently-released report ‘Cost Effective Approaches to Improve Global Learning’, the Global Education Evidence Advisory Panel (GEEAP) offers some education ‘great buys’, ‘good buys’ , ‘promising buys with low evidence’ and ‘bad buys’. In short, they offer a ‘great buy’ flower here and a ‘bad buy’ leaf there.

Teaching at the Right Level (TaRL)

Among the ‘good buys’ are ‘interventions to target teaching instruction by learning level, not grade (in or out of school). This is known as ‘Teaching at the Right Level’ (TaRL). The essential idea is that students should be grouped for teaching, based (more…)

Universities enrich communities, as well as educating students – new research

Blog Editor, IOE Digital29 October 2020

Gorodenkoff/Shutterstock

Elaine Unterhalter.

Education helps us share knowledge, develop understanding, and supports our connection with each other. As the COVID-19 pandemic has continued, governments have been preoccupied with how to re-open schools.

However, there has been more doubt about universities. Discussions about the rise in COVID-19 infections in student populations have often raised the question as to why students are at university at all, running risks for themselves and local populations. These questions often link with views of universities as expensive, elitist – and perhaps not worth it at all.

Together with colleagues, I have conducted research commissioned by the British Council to assess the value provided by higher education. We reviewed 170 research studies published since 2010 (more…)