Transcending Disciplinary Realms in Exploring the Role of Education in Socioeconomic Development
At IOE, we have ploughed more and more effort in recent years in expanding and invigorating the program of learning & networking that we offer early-career scholars from multiple corners of the globe and with diverse perspectives in educational research. Proudly inaugurated this year in association with the World Bank, the First International Summer School ‘The Role of Education in National and Regional Socioeconomic Development’ has become an enriching and timely addition to IOE’s summer academic agenda of 2019.
I would honestly say that of various summer schools I’ve had a chance to attend so far, this one definitely stands out as a unique venue to synthesize very focused conceptual, methodological and applied insights that have cut across multiple disciplinary dimensions that are important for advancing our understanding about different facets in the nexus between education and other domains of socio-economic life. The School’s five-day program of learning and debate has combined intensive exposures to lectures and workshops by distinguished academics and experts of international renown, ensuring the participants could learn firsthand about the latest and most important perspectives in the economics of education, education policy, and so on.
Of the broad and engaging academic agenda that was featured by the debut Summer School of 2019, one event that deserves a special mention is a lecture by Suhas Parandekar (World Bank) where he gave a comprehensive account of the BART advanced framework for data analysis. As the World Bank boasts unrivalled expertise in educational analytics and advisory, which cuts across the entire global landscape and covers various stakeholder groups and all levels of education, insights and reflections that Mr. Parandekar shared during his presentation have become a valuable experience for everyone who participated.
Hands-on workshops were another essential format of the Summer School program where the participants worked on their independent projects that could be broadly classified along the following three streams:
- Econometric analysis, which is a framework that can solve multiple tasks across a broad variety of research areas. As part of the School’s very focused and intensive agenda, the participants tried their hand at using EA methods to address specific applied research questions in education that they first formulated in drawing on guidance and feedback by the World Bank faculty on how one should best proceed to narrow down and elucidate the subject of their research. Specifically, these projects focused on areas such as developing forecasts of global participation in higher education, projecting skills supply/demand trends, and so on.
- Exploratory projects that primarily sought to unlock new scholarly vistas and dimensions in education. Examples here include, inter alia, a study of the market for higher education in Uzbekistan, a profile analysis of university rectors in Kazakhstan, etc.
- Pioneer projects that aimed to trailblaze insights into areas and domains transcending individual disciplines and national landscapes, such as a study of the global sustainability agenda through the prism of international law.
Overall, the School has become an edifying and rewarding experience to be cherished by everyone who attended as they embark on their further research pursuits in education and beyond.