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Symposium 2012

Background Paper - Effective Investments in Education

The Challenge

Education is a fundamental right for everyone and key to the future of any country. Education has its price everywhere—but the only thing more expensive than investing in education is not investing ...

Education is a fundamental right for everyone and key to the future of any country. Education has its price everywhere—but the only thing more expensive than investing in education is not investing in education. Inadequate education produces high costs for society in terms of public spending, crime, health, and economic growth. No country can afford to leave too many of its children behind and not to help them achieve the competencies needed for a self-fulfilled life in economic independence.

Identifying the main challenges in the field of education is not complicated as they have been the same for years: “raising the bar and closing the gap” has become a common slogan almost everywhere in the world. In this paper, we will try to give some background information on effective education investments. The paper should pave the way for finding new strategies to a not-so-new challenge in the context of this year’s Global Economic Symposium2. We first give a short overview on why investments in education are one of the most important governmental tasks. Then, we would like to discuss what “effective investments in education” are characterized by. Thirdly, we present some strategies how to implement reforms so that resources are utilized effectively and discuss financing mechanisms to support effective investing. As a concluding paragraph, we draw together some main aspects of possible solutions.