The Education Commission, chaired by Gordon Brown, and the Global Steering Group for Impact Investment have come together under the chairmanship of Sir Ronald Cohen to establish a $1 billion Education Outcomes Fund, for Africa and the Middle East (‘the Fund’).

The Fund aims to help transform educational attainment in the region and achieve SDG 4, by pooling grant funds from official aid donors, foundations, and private philanthropic funders, to deploy into pay-for-success programs, with impact investors providing working capital at risk through development impact bonds (DIBs).

There is a growing body of evidence that this approach has huge potential to address many historic challenges with aid delivery, by aligning incentives around outcomes, fostering innovation and flexibility in service delivery, and bringing in new sources of private capital.

The fund will seek to rapidly scale up proven and / or innovative services from non-state actors in areas such as Early Childhood Development (ECD) or ed-tech, that can bring much needed capacity and capabilities to strengthen state education systems, and help low income countries ‘leapfrog’ their level and quality of provision.

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