The Global Education Platform: Harnessing Technology to Deliver Universal Education and Skills Training to the New Global Economy
Our world is afflicted by a global skills gap. The need for skilled individuals is growing rapidly while the young and marginalised lack access to the education that would allow them to meet this need. While the 2025-generation will be the first in which the majority of workers will require formal skills, over one billion people in the workforce will still lack a secondary education. In its current form, the global education system cannot supply the quantity and quality of education needed to meet this demand. Without change, the undereducated will be further marginalised, and the divide between poor and rich will continue to grow, undermining global growth.
An online Global Education Platform (GEP) could bridge this gap. Based on a careful analysis of the needs of potential students and employers, the GEP will aggregate educational contents from diverse providers and certify learning success. Without charging students, the GEP will sustain a healthy competition among content providers by rewarding them on the basis of the student achievement each of them facilitates in terms of learning and employment — taking account of the value of certifiable skills actually acquired and of the number of students so benefitted.
On the 17th and 18th of December 2013, the Office of the UN Special Envoy for Global Education co-hosted an event in London with Purpose Capital, Incentives for Global Health, Functional Imperative, A World at School and the Global Business Coalition convening 30 CEOs, technology entrepreneurs and academics working on online education and massive open online courses (MOOCS) to explore the feasibility and way forward for such an initiative. The purpose of the two-day meeting was to discuss how to best develop the GEP while forging a consensus regarding the necessity, logistics, financing, and delivery models for its development. A special thanks to the Fred Mulder Charitable Trust whose generous support made this event possible.
The Global Business Coalition for Education has advanced the outcomes from this initial meeting. For additional updates on Global Education Platform progress, visit: gbc-education.org/gep
Some of the participating and partner organizations include: