For the past couple of decades, the world has made enormous progress in the field of education, most notably at the basic level (UN SDG, 2015). The basic level is considered the first stage of formal education and provides core literacy and numeracy skills and helps to establish a strong foundation for students’ future learning and career trajectories. While literacy rates and enrollment at the basic education level (and beyond) have improved globally, serious equity (income and gender) and quality concerns remain, especially in low income countries and those with fragile status.

Sustainable Development Goals (SDG 4) states, “Achieving inclusive and quality education for all reaffirms the belief that education is one of the most powerful and proven vehicles for sustainable development.” However, this goal cannot be achieved on time without significant resource allocations to the sector and the development of an ‘education agenda’ at the global, regional and national levels, including serious engagement by key education stakeholders at the local levels, including by non-state actors.

At the higher education level, while the numbers of those enrolled have been increasing globally, the overall higher education enrollment rates are still low and the quality of higher education programs sub-optimal, especially in South-Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa. Reaching middle income status by most of these low-income countries will require an increase in their highly skilled population and a shift in skills composition, which will require strategic and significant additional investment at the higher education level. Also, actualizing their development vision will require the effective and innovative contributions of high quality university graduates with expertise in science and technology, as well as management capacity to drive innovations in various economic growth sectors.

IDI aspires to play a role in helping to achieve SDG 4 and other education goals, with a focus on South Asia and Africa (two regions with lowest learning outcomes) through strong research, policy and advocacy and capacity building/ training. IDI offers a wide range of services through its Education practice. Our leadership acknowledges the importance of education quality, equity, and efficiency. IDI is driven by evidence and data-based decision making as we design and implement our education and training programs. IDI also has experience in research design as well as in conducting surveys and collecting and analyzing data at scale.

Our leadership in the Education Practice have years of experience working in the field of education.

In response to COVID-19, IDI rolled out a number of webinars and online training programs to highlight education challenges and opportunities and post-COVID-19 planning targeting stakeholders across the education spectrum from policymakers to school administrators and teachers. Over 1,000 critical stakeholders from 18 countries participated in these recently offered online programs.

Ongoing Projects

  • Global STEM Scholars Program for high school students
  • School Executives Leadership Program (SELP) in collaboration with George Mason University, Northern VA Community College Fairfax County Public School, and the Head Foundation, Singapore
  • Facilitating Kathmandu University (KU) and George Mason University for the capacity building in KU
  • Building capacity of public officials to better analyze education data for informed decision making will collaboration with faculty at Carnegie Mellon University and UNESCO
  • Consulting with Department of Education (DOE) and Biratnagar Municipality to build capacity in failing schools

Partnering Organziations

  • George Mason University, USA
  • Arizona State University, USA
  • Google
  • Singapore Consulting Group (SCG), Singapore
  • Open Development Education, UK
  • In2Impact and Research Stories, UK
  • LAN, Nepal

Our Team

Principal Consultant: Dr. Arun Raj Joshi, IIDS and LAN (Nepal)

Team Members

  1. Dr. Molly Teas, CEO, Annapurna Consulting (USA)
  2. Dr. Padmanabhan Seshaiyer, Professor & Associate Dean, School of Science, George Mason University (USA)
  3. Ms. Kerin Hilker-Balkisoon, Director, Educational & Career Pathways, George Mason University (USA)
  4. Dr. Ana Ferreras, Senior Program Officer, National Science Academy (USA)
  5. Mr. Mahashram Sharma, Former Secretary, Department of Eucation (Nepal)
  6. Mr. Asad Hossain, Country Coordinator, IDI (Bangladesh)
  7. Mr. Chandra Upadhdyay, Associate Professor, Tribhuwan University (Nepal)
  8. Ms. Sharmila Pradhananga, Teacher, St. Xaviers School (Nepal)