Financing Education in Sub Saharan Africa: Meeting the Challenge of Expansion, Equity and Quality

This report presents a series of data highlighting the tremendous financial commitment of African governments and the international community to achieve Education for All (EFA). Since 2001, real expenditure on education has risen by 6% annually across sub-Saharan Africa (SSA), according to the report. As a result of these investments, remarkable progress has been made in educational… Read more


Governance reforms in higher education: A study of institutional autonomy in Asian countries

This study focuses on institutional autonomy and the role it plays in governance and management towards enhancing the overall effectiveness of higher education systems. It addresses in particular the effect of autonomy on academic programmes, staff appointments, student admissions, administration, and financing. The study is based on case studies taken from five countries in Asia:… Read more


Public-Private Partnerships in Education

Recent years have seen an expansion and broadening of the private sector‘s role in the financing and provision of education services in many countries. A key trend has been the emergence of more sophisticated forms of non-state involvement in education through Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs). These PPPs – or multi-stakeholder partnerships for education (MSPEs) – pull… Read more


Capability Traps? The Mechanisms of Persistent Implementation Failure

Many countries remain stuck in conditions of low productivity that many call “poverty traps.” Economic growth is only one aspect of development; another key dimension of development is the expansion of the administrative capability of the state, the capability of governments to affect the course of events by implementing policies and programs. In this paper,… Read more


Learning assessments

This helpdesk report provides a rapid analysis of evidence of the role of large-scale learning assessments (LSEAs) in education systems in low- and middle-income countries. It is divided into five principal sections, each associated with one of the 5 sub-queries set out above. The information and analysis is supplemented by a number of Annexes detailing… Read more


Global Trends in University Governance

This paper is concerned with the way that governments plan and direct their tertiary education sectors. The term “governance” is used to describe all those structures, processes and activities that are involved in the planning and direction of the institutions and people working in tertiary education. It also looks at some aspects of the internal governance of… Read more


Financing Higher Education in Africa

This report is a follow-up to the 2008 study published by the World Bank, Accelerating Catch Up—Tertiary Education for Growth in Sub-Saharan Africa, which spelled out the case for more knowledge-intensive growth in Africa and described the critical role of higher education in this endeavor.  It examines current practices in financing higher education in Sub-Saharan Africa, taking… Read more


Critical thinking at Rwanda’s public universities: Emerging evidence of a crucial development priority

Rwanda’s national development strategy relies heavily on expanding access to higher education, largely due to an assumption that a university education encourages the ability to think critically about problems and to use evidence when making decisions. This study empirically investigated this assumption by administering a performance-task-based test of critical thinking, adapted for use in Rwanda,… Read more


Higher education and economic development: Literature review

This review explores the importance of higher education as a driver of economic competitiveness in both industralised and developing countries. As pointed out by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development in 2008, tertiary education contributes to the formation of human capital, the building of knowledge bases, the dissemination and use of knowledge, and the… Read more


Higher Education Aid: Setting Priorities and Improving Effectiveness

Higher education aid, initially, was primarily used to provide graduate training in donor countries. Later, aid money was invested to establish new institutions or to strengthen existing institutions in the developing world. With criticisms of brain drain, mounting unemployment of the educated, and the emerging priority of Education for All programs, donor support to higher… Read more


Good practice in cost sharing and financing in higher education

This good practice guide focuses on the importance of cost sharing and partnerships with stakeholders in higher education, including with the private sector. The guide supports Asian Development Bank’s (ADB) education sector staff in their policy dialogue with governments and other stakeholders, and during project processing. The guide discusses the debate and evolution of cost… Read more


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