Like every Friday, from Raj Nallari and Breda Griffith's lecture notes on Economic Policies for Poverty Reduction.
Educational attainment has a positive impact on economic growth and poverty reduction. The microeconomic literature has also established a clear relationship between educational attainment and individual income. Educational attainment is positively linked with technological adaptation, innovation, and increased productivity, generating positive spin-off and growth effects for the economy. Non-economic factors also posit a positive role for education: it is a basic human development capability. Yet for many of the world’s poor, access to education remains out of reach. Improvements have taken place in school attainment but many challenges remain.
Achieving universal primary education (UPE) by 2015 is a Millennium Development Goal. The failure to achieve UPE and reduced illiteracy rates by 2000 that was agreed by the global community at the World Conference on Education for all at Jomtien, Thailand, was again adopted by 180 nations at the World Education Forum at Dakar in 2000. Education helps in the achievement of all of the other Millennium Development Goals such as poverty reduction, gender equity, child and maternal health, lower HIV/AIDS and other communicable diseases, and environmental stability.
In upcoming weeks we will examine the progress being made by developing economies in achieving educational attainment, chiefly at the primary level and the challenges that confront these economies. We will also examine the initiatives aimed at achieving universal education and in particular universal primary completion, as well as the financial resources needed at the domestic and international donor level, the main challenge facing low income countries today.