Appointments Made to New International Commission

New York, NY (September 22, 2015) – More than twenty world leaders, including five former presidents and prime ministers and three Nobel Prize recipients, have been appointed to a new International Commission on Financing Global Education Opportunity to reverse the lack of financing for education around the world.  The Commission, supported by the Government of Norway and Prime Minister Erna Solberg, will review the future of global education which currently leaves 124 million young people out of school.

The selection of this diverse group of individuals comes at a crucial time when more children are out of school than a year ago and increased conflict has forced millions of children out of the classrooms to become refugees with no prospects of education.  The Commission will explore how over the next 15 to 20 years, education could lead to greater economic growth, better health outcomes, and improved global security. 

The Commission is co-convened by the Norwegian Prime Minister alongside President Michelle Bachelet of Chile, President Joko Widodo of Indonesia, President Peter Mutharika of Malawi and the Director-General of UNESCO, Irina Bokova.

Gordon Brown, UN Special Envoy for Global Education, has been appointed Chair of the Commission.

Prime Minister Solberg said, “Education is key to fighting poverty, and I believe educating girls is the single most powerful investment for development. When you educate a girl, you educate a nation.  I am confident that the Commission will play an important role in mobilizing the resources needed to achieve education for development set out for 2030 and beyond.”

This Commission includes the following leaders:

Anant Agarwal, CEO, edX; Professor, MIT

José Manuel Barroso, Former President, European Commission

Felipe Calderón, Former President, Mexico

Kristin Clemet, Managing Director, Civita; Former Minister of Education and Research and Former Minister of Labour and Government Administration, Norway

Aliko Dangote, CEO, Dangote Group

Julia Gillard, Chair, Global Partnership for Education; Former Prime Minister, Australia

Baela Raza Jamil, Adviser/Trustee, Idara-e-Taleem-o-Aagahi (ITA)

Amel Karboul, Secretary-General of MEF (Maghreb Economic Forum); Founder and Chair of Change, Leadership & Partners (CLP); Former Minister of Tourism, Tunisia

Jakaya Kikwete, Former President, Tanzania

Jim Kim, President, World Bank Group

Yuriko Koike, Member of the House of Representatives, Former Minister of Defense, Japan

Anthony Lake, Executive Director, UNICEF

Ju-ho Lee , Professor, KDI School of Public Policy and Management; Former Korean Minister of Education

Jack Ma, Founder and Executive Chairman, Alibaba Group

Graça Machel, Founder, Graça Machel Trust

Strive Masiyiwa, CEO, Econet Wireless

Teopista Birungi Mayanja, Founder, Uganda National Teachers’ Union (UNATU); Deputy Director Education Services, Kampala Capital City Authority

Shakira Mebarak, International Artist; Founder, Fundación Pies Descalzos

Patricio Meller, Professor, University of Chile; President, Fundación Chile

Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Chair, GAVI; Former Minister of Finance, Nigeria

Sheikha Lubna Al Qasimi, Minister of International Cooperation and Development, United Arab Emirates

Kailash Satyarthi, Founder, Bachpan Bachao Andolan

Amartya Sen, Thomas W. Lamont University Professor and Professor of Economics and Philosophy, Harvard University

Theo Sowa, CEO, African Women’s Development Fund

Lawrence Summers, Charles W. Eliot University Professor and President Emeritus, Harvard University; 71st Secretary of the Treasury for President Clinton; Director of the National Economic Council for President Obama

Helle Thorning-Schmidt, Member of Parliament; Former Prime Minister, Denmark

Jeffrey Sachs, UN Secretary-General’s Special Advisor, will participate in the third meeting of the Commission. Additionally, Kennedy Odede (Kenya) and Rosemarie Ramitt (Guyana) will Co-Chair a Youth Panel. Malala Yousafzai will also serve on the Youth Panel.