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ERIC Number: EJ873569
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Feb
Pages: 20
Abstractor: ERIC
ISSN: ISSN-0010-4086
International Aid to Education
Benavot, Aaron
Comparative Education Review, v54 n1 p105-124 Feb 2010
Recent evidence highlights several worrisome trends regarding aid pledges and disbursements, which have been exacerbated by the global financial crisis. First, while overall development assistance rose in 2008, after 2 years of decline, the share of all sector aid going to the education sector has remained virtually unchanged at about 12 percent since 2000. By contrast, aid to the health sector increased in the 2000-2008 period from 11 percent to 17 percent. Second, members of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) Development Assistance Committee (DAC) disbursed approximately US$10.8 billion of overall aid to education in 2007, up from US$5.2 billion in 2002. However, the share of aid going to basic education declined from 41 percent to 38 percent during the same period. Third, the number of donors providing aid to education is concentrated among a small group of donors: only five donors account for over 60 percent of all aid commitments to basic education. This means that decisions to cut funds among certain donors can have major global reverberations. Fourth, during the recent recession some donors have sustained, or even increased, their aid commitments (e.g., the United Kingdom, the United States, Spain), while others have severely cut back (Ireland, Italy) on aid pledges. This unpredictability in future aid undermines sound educational planning. Fifth, overall aid from non-OECD countries (e.g., Saudi Arabia, Brazil, India, China) appears to be rising; so too are the contributions of private foundations and philanthropies. However, the share of this aid targeting educational frameworks varies considerably across countries and agencies, and it is inconsistent over time. Finally, aid allocation to conflict-affected countries, where educational challenges are acute, is highly concentrated (mostly to Afghanistan, Ethiopia, and Pakistan); many other conflict-affected countries receive insufficient aid relative to their educational needs. These trends underscore the concerns of many educational stakeholders: (1) an inadequate level and predictability of education aid; (2) an insufficient targeting of aid to basic education; (3) a high concentration of aid donors; and (4) aid flows not matching real educational need. This article presents a special moderated discussion on international aid to education participated by several experts--David Archer, Stephen Moseley, Karen Mundy, Felix Phiri, Liesbet Steer, and David Wiking. This group brings an unusually rich array of knowledge, perspectives, and experience to the discussion, as they represent bilateral donor agencies (Moseley, Wiking), nongovernmental organizations (Archer), educational planners in national education ministries (Phiri), as well as comparative education researchers (Mundy and Steer). (Contains 1 table and 4 footnotes.)
University of Chicago Press. Journals Division, P.O. Box 37005, Chicago, IL 60637. Tel: 877-705-1878; Tel: 773-753-3347; Fax: 877-705-1879; Fax: 773-753-0811; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Adult Basic Education; Elementary Secondary Education; Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A