Following the success of the Learning Metrics Task Force meeting hosted by Dubai Cares in 2013, Dubai Cares hosted the Building Evidence in Education Donor Working Group Meeting on 2-3 November 2014 at the Al Murooj Rotana Hotel in Dubai. The group, launched in 2012, works towards engaging bilateral and multi-lateral organizations committed to increasing the quality of education research by promoting the use of evidence in education programming and strengthening donor-research collaboration.
Dubai Cares hosted the fourth meeting of the working group, which attracted technical experts and academics from various institutions, representatives from humanitarian development organizations in addition to a respected steering committee composed of the Department of International Development (DFID) from the UK; UNICEF, the UN Children's Rights and Emergency Relief organization, United States Agency for International Development (USAID), and The World Bank.
Speaking on Dubai Cares involvement in convening international forums that promote conversations around evaluation and learning, Tariq Al Gurg, Chief Executive Officer Dubai Cares said: "Dubai Cares is part of a global movement working towards the achievement of universal primary education through catalytic and innovative programs. In tandem with designing these programs, we also focus on measuring the impact of these interventions, and adding to the global body of evidence in the field. By studying the practices of evidence-gathering and analysis, we are refining the ways of putting these programs under the microscope - studying their multiple facets, fine-tuning the way they are designed and scaling up their implementation – so that we create optimum and pertinent impact."
The discussions focused on educational research findings and methodological issues, as well as new opportunities for collaboration. In addition, the group also explored research centered on post-primary education for girls، early childhood care and education, and the challenges of turning research into action and policy.
Panel sessions at the meeting focused on a number of topics including what is needed to increase the uptake of evidence in policy making, and how policy makers can best leverage and incorporate findings in their decision making.
"This is in line with our aim to be a technical convener on educational issues and foster cross-learning opportunities at the regional and global levels. Impact studies and other research have provided more and better evidence on what works in education. As a community, we need to jointly identify and develop evidence-based models that can support policy makers in their efforts to provide equal access to quality education," said Al Gurg.
"We are seeing a positive trend in education with a marked increase in the number of children in schools. In the developing world, where the presence of an educated and skilled workforce can prompt economic growth and social reforms, this can have a tangible impact on key issues such as gender equality and child rights. However, in order to sustain the momentum, we have to be forward thinking by constantly studying new efficiencies, expanding capabilities and establishing higher goals. It is the only way to manage the complexity of social and economic problems of our times," concluded Al Gurg.