With rigorous economic research and practical policy solutions, we focus on the issues and institutions that are critical to global development. Explore our core themes and topics to learn more about our work.
In timely and incisive analysis, our experts parse the latest development news and devise practical solutions to new and emerging challenges. Our events convene the top thinkers and doers in global development.
CGD’s work in education focuses on the role education can play in building more equal and prosperous societies.
CGD’s education program focuses on broad welfare goals and seeks to understand the role education can play in addressing inequity. Despite the tremendous progress that has been made in getting girls and boys into school, education has not yet fulfilled its promise of being the great societal equalizer. Gender inequality remains acute and deeply rooted in the economic, political and social spheres in developing countries. Intergenerational mobility is declining, not increasing. Poor children get educated in bad schools where they do not acquire basic numeracy and literacy skills while rich children attend good schools.
Our research examines the mechanisms through which education can give children equal life opportunities and build the human capital that nations need to prosper.
David Evans, Senior Fellow at the Center for Global Development, will present new research which tests the impact of publicly providing day-care for children age 0-3 on children’s development, labour market participation for mothers, grandmothers, and others, and household well-being in Brazil. Following David’s presentation, Matthew Jukes will provide commentary and questions on the research and will position the findings within broader early childhood development policy and research.
Public spending on social sectors can play a crucial role in inclusive and sustained growth in low- and middle-income countries, and in delivering the health, education, and social protection outcomes to which governments and their partners have committed as part of the 2030 SDGs. Yet challenges are ahead. A large gap remains between the resources currently devoted to social sectors and the level needed to meet SDG targets. Each SDG has its own resource demands that require governments to weigh the costs and benefits of public spending across a range of uses. Finally, current and upcoming transitions in health and development aid, modest domestic resource mobilization gains, and rising debt service obligations put pressure on the fiscal envelope.
In this paper, Saugato Datta and non-resident fellow Sendhil Mullainathan explore the implications of behavioral economics in policy areas as diverse as health, education, agricultural policy, and the design of cash-transfer programs.
With abundant data, sound analysis, and first-hand experience, Lant Pritchett shows that the way to turn underperforming schools around is to allow functional systems to evolve locally out of an environment pressured for success. Schools systems need to be open to variety and experimentation, locally operated, and flexibly financed. The only main cost is ceding control; the reward would be the rebirth of education suited for today’s world.
We investigate heterogeneity across beneficiaries and implementers—in a randomized trial of contract teachers in Kenyan schools. The data show a stark contrast in success
between the government and NGO arm that can be traced back to implementation constraints and political economy forces put in motion as the program went to scale.