With 189 member countries, staff from more 170 countries, and offices in over 130 locations, the World Bank Group is a unique global partnership: five the education of children in Greece working for sustainable solutions that reduce poverty and build shared prosperity in developing countries. The World Bank Group works in every major area of development.
We provide a wide array of financial products and technical assistance, and we help countries share and apply innovative knowledge and solutions to the challenges they face. We face big challenges to help the world’s poorest people and ensure that everyone sees benefits from economic growth. Data and research help us understand these challenges and set priorities, share knowledge of what works, and measure progress. Education is fundamental to development and growth.
From encouraging higher enrollment to promoting learning for all, the World Bank Group plays a significant role in education globally. Education has large, consistent returns in terms of income and counters widening inequality. For individuals, it promotes employment, earnings, health, and poverty reduction. For societies, it drives long-term economic growth, spurs innovation, strengthens institutions, and fosters social cohesion. Mounting evidence shows that the skills acquired in school are what drive growth and equip individuals for work and life. Without learning, education fails to deliver fully on its promise as a central driver of poverty elimination and shared prosperity. Schooling without learning is not just a wasted opportunity, but an injustice to the children who need it most.
Developing countries have made tremendous progress in getting children into the classroom and primary school access has seen unprecedented expansion. The majority of children worldwide are now in school and the number of years of schooling completed by the average adult in the developing world has more than tripled in recent decades, from two years in 1950 to more than seven years in 2010. Quality education can only be achieved with excellent teachers. Support to girls and women is key to the WBG’s twin goals of eliminating extreme poverty by 2030 and boosting shared prosperity. In July 2017, the WBG reported that child marriage can cost developing countries billions of dollars by 2030 and recommended how this could be stemmed. To help increase labor market productivity, the WBG examines how education can play a role in addressing the skills mismatch present in many countries around the world. Achieving learning for all also means moving beyond financing the inputs that education systems need, to strengthening these systems to deliver results.
There is growing demand from countries for results-based financing, which is a set of tools to better align incentives and desired outcomes by making financing contingent on the achievement of pre-agreed results. This approach has shown promise and could help countries leverage the financial resources needed to achieve the SDGs. 5 billion over the next five years. The WBG conducts and supports rigorous impact evaluations to generate stronger evidence about what works in education under different conditions. In many countries, WBG funds are also helping to attract much larger resources from governments, as well as other development partners, resulting in streamlined education programs and lower transaction costs for governments. With WBG support, Cambodia conducted its first national assessment of the Khmer language for students in 2006 and again in 2009.