Action Agendas

Achieving the Learning Generation and getting all young people into school and learning will require investment, commitment, leadership and advocacy from all stakeholders. From donors to business and civil society, everyone has a role to play and each must take action to make the Learning Generation a reality .

The Role of Business

Business has a major stake in the future of education. The success of the private sector and the economy depends greatly on the future skills of the workforce , which is critically linked to the expansion of quality education around the world. Businesses have a critical role to play in creating the Learning Generation – as employers and providers, as investors and innovators, as leaders and advocates. To achieve the Learning Generation, business leaders must consider:

  • Strengthening its voice in education, its leadership in advocating for educational reform and investment, and its role as a partner of government in helping to ensure that the design and delivery of education and training keep pace with changing labor market needs.
  • Encouraging increased business investment in education, including: the development and deployment of innovative financial instruments, financing mechanisms, and results-focused investment approaches; strengthening government procurement and partnering capacity; and action to encourage investment in educational infrastructure, technologies, platforms, and resources.
  • Supporting employer-led innovation in the design and delivery of education and training – in particular, to help support transitions into work through programs such as apprenticeships or employability training; improve the quality and status of vocational training; and help the existing workforce to adapt to changes in the workplace and new skill demands.
  • As employers, supporting and expanding innovation in the recognition and accreditation of skills, including through ”badging” or other new forms of recognition and qualification – vital for enabling the growth of new delivery models, such as online learning, which can radically expand access and lower costs of learning.
  • Pushing corporate philanthropy and corporate social responsibility to increase funding for education, including considering how core business practices or investment decisions can be ”pro-learning”; and a proposed “Education Giving Pledge,” encouraging business leaders and high net worth individuals to make a substantial and public commitment to education.

Download the full  brief: Achieving the Learning Generation: The Role of Business

The Role of Civil Society
Civil society — whether local community groups or global NGOs — is central to educational delivery and advocacy , and has been responsible for many of the breakthroughs that have opened up education to poor and disadvantaged children. With a critical role to play in creating the Learning Generation, civil society must consider:

  • Strengthening and sustaining a global advocacy movement for education to focus attention and build support for change. The movement would encompass high-level global leadership and grassroots action across sectors and geographies.
  • Advocating for educational reform and investment— locally, nationally, and internationally. This includes making the case for increased and more effective financing by domestic governments, donors, philanthropists, and investors. Advocacy priorities include reforms to domestic taxation including action to tackle tax avoidance; increasing domestic budget allocations for education and tackling corruption and inefficiencies in how resources get deployed; increasing international financing and improving the way it is allocated; and backing the establishment of a Multilateral Development Bank (MDB) investment mechanism for education.
  • Maximizing its potential to drive innovation in educational delivery. This includes recommendations to increase investment and support for innovation throughout education, such as expanding access to technology and improving research and evaluation; and ways in which governments can strengthen their capacity to partner with civil society in the delivery of education.
  • Advancing educational inclusion – from campaigning to tackle the factors that keep children out of school, such as child marriage or labor, to delivering education to the most excluded, such as children caught up in emergencies.
  • Ensuring active accountability, which is vital for delivering many of the Commission’s recommendations. Accountability recommendations include, for example, community action to help to reduce waste and tackle corruption; monitoring learning to help hold schools and leaders accountable for results; and holding governments accountable on the international stage through increased transparency and a new UN Special Representative for Education.

Download the full  brief: Achieving the Learning Generation: The Role of Civil Society

The Role of Donors

Achieving the Learning Generation will require total global spending on education to rise steadily from $1.2 trillion per year to $3 trillion by 2030, and it will require reforming education systems to improve results and efficiency so that every dollar delivers real learning . To make the Learning Generation a reality, donors must consider:

  • Proposals to increase international financing for education from today’s estimated $16 billion per year to $89 billion per year by 2030. While the vast majority of financing must come from developing countries themselves, international financing will still play an important role, particularly for low-income countries, covering on average half of their education costs, as well as for fragile states. International finance can also boost access to official loans in countries transitioning to middle-income status, and catalyze domestic investment and reforms in middle-income countries.
  • The proposed establishment of a Multilateral Development Bank (MDB) investment mechanism for education. This mechanism would ensure that education benefits from the unprecedented opportunity to increase MDB financing through much greater leveraging of their capital bases. The Commission estimates that establishing such a mechanism could potentially mobilize $20 billion or more annually from MDBs for education by 2030 (up from $3.5 billion today).
  • Recommendations to increase official development assistance, from $13 billion today to $49 billion in 2030, and improve its allocation and impact to ensure that more funding goes to those countries committed to investing in and reforming education; more goes to low-income and fragile states; more goes through multilateral institutions; and more goes on priority issues within education. Proposals include an education equivalent of the “Equitable Access Initiative” in health, to develop a shared and coordinated approach to allocation.
  • Recommendations to increase funding for education in humanitarian crises to a level of 4-6 percent of humanitarian assistance.
  • Proposals to expand the use of innovative financing instruments and results-focused investment approaches to help to strengthen the link between investment and outcomes, mobilize new sources of finance, and foster new collaborations.
  • Proposals to increase funding from philanthropists, corporations, and charitable organizations to $20 billion by 2030 – including the development of an “Education Giving Pledge,” encouraging high-net worth individuals to make a substantial and public commitment to education; new financing platforms and instruments to encourage new investors; and encouraging increased private giving through remittances.
  • Recommendations to increase funding for global public goods – such as globally comparable data on learning outcomes, and increased research and evaluation into educational innovations.
  • Proposals to cut waste and maximize the efficiency of all education financing. This includes a wide range of proposals for increasing accountability for results, shifting investment into the most effective practices, tackling corruption, and innovating to lower costs.

Download the full  brief: Achieving the Learning Generation: The Role of Donors