Why girls’ education is the world’s best investment

Rebecca Winthrop, senior fellow and director of the Center for Universal Education at Brookings, discusses her new book (co-authored with Gene Sperling and Christina Kwauk) “What Works in Girls’ Education: Evidence for the World’s Best Investment” (Brookings Institution Press, 2015).

“Girls’ education really is quite unique in terms of interventions you can do,” she says. “Not because it’s a silver bullet; there are no such things as silver bullets. But, certainly in developing country contexts, it has so many high returns across such a wide variety of areas important for society.”

In this podcast, Winthrop walks us through the evolution of girls’ education and how “Twenty-five years ago, girls’ education was an issue in every single country in the world.” She reminds us that there’s a reason to be optimistic: “There are a lot of huge gains in girls’ education. There is a lot to celebrate. Over the last twenty years, the number of girls who have been out of school have been cut in half.”

Also in this podcast: Listen to Bill Frey, senior fellow in the Metropolitan Policy program and author of the book “Diversity Explosion,” answer a question from one of our listeners on how we define post-baby boom generations. And also stay tuned for the next installment of “Steve Hess Stories,” in which Senior Fellow Emeritus Stephen Hess discusses his childhood in New York City and his first memories of the presidency.

Show Notes:

What Works in Girls’ Education: Evidence for the World’s Best Investment

Diversity Explosion: How New Racial Demographics are Remaking America

America’s Political Dynasties

Also listen to our other podcast episodes about global education:

Education challenges in the Arab world, with Maysa Jalbout

The power of universal education, with Julia Gillard

A bleak picture for children’s education in the Arab world, with Hafex Ghanem and Liesbet Steer

Educating Children Worldwide: Access Plus Learning, with Rebecca Winthrop


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