Making science work for development

Sustainable development

Sustainable development is essential if basic human needs are to be met without compromising global resources and the quality of life for future generations.

UKCDS member organisations fund research that addresses the underpinning requirements of sustainable development, from predicting climate change and protecting natural resources for food and water security to developing low carbon energy.

The UKCDS Secretariat works with UK funders to share information, showcase their work and facilitate multidisciplinary approaches to address the complex challenges of sustainable development.

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Education systems

In summer 2013, DFID and ESRC approached the UKCDS Secretariat to help them scope a potential research call on education systems for international development.

Despite increasing numbers of children at school across the developing world, at least 250 million children cannot read or count, even if they have spent four years in school. We know that inputs like more teachers or textbooks matter in improving learning, but there is surprisingly little research on the education system: organisation, financing, and delivery of education services at scale and the impact of these services on learning, skills development and well-being.

DFID invest heavily in education, and the majority of this work takes place in partnership with national governments. Better understanding education systems in developing countries is therefore crucial to inform the design and delivery of interventions aimed to improve education at scale.

If you have any questions about Education systems, then please feel free to contact Robin Toomey
12 March 2015
There has been a lot going on in education systems research over the last year, all geared towards catalysing the growth of a community. The joint ESRC-DFID programme UKCDS helped to design -...
18 March 2014
Major programmes into education research for international development have been launched, with funders such as DFID and ESRC calling for world-class and cutting-edge policy-relevant research that...
  • Education systems
Education Systems Town Hall
23 January 2014
On Thursday 23 January 2014, UKCDS hosted an 'Education Systems Town Hall' which saw five leading research funders unpack their strategies for education research in international development. Senior...
1 August 2013
This rapid review, commissioned by DFID, was produced in May 2013 to inform the shape of a potential research programme on education systems