Rethinking Education: Towards a global common good? Former UKNC Chair co-authors new UNESCO report

This month, UNESCO published its latest education report: Rethinking Education: Towards a global common good? The Report is intended to stimulate public policy debate about the purpose of education and the organisation of learning. It is the work of a Senior Experts’ Group established by the Director-General of UNESCO, Irina Bokova, which was co-Chaired by former UKNC Chair, Professor W. John Morgan.

The Group of international experts was tasked with preparing a succinct document that identified issues likely to affect the organisation of learning and to stimulate debate about a 21st century vision for education. It was co-chaired by Ms Amina J. Mohammed, Special Advisor to the United Nations Secretary-General on Post-2015 Development Planning and Assistant Secretary-General, and Professor W. John Morgan, UNESCO Chair at the University of Nottingham.

Professor Morgan said, “The Report is intended as an opportunity to renew the influential UNESCO reports, Learning to Be: The world of education today and tomorrow (1972) and Learning: The treasure within (1996), which did so much to develop the concept and practice of lifelong learning and of mass participation in education. This new Report highlights the urgent need to consider education as a global common good, in the interests of humanity’s sustainable development and welfare. It is intended also as a stimulus to dialogue about the fundamental purposes of education, rather than as a technical blue-print”.

Mrs Irina Bokova described the Report as: “[…] a humanist vision of education as an essential common good.” She wrote in the Foreword that she believed this vision to renew ‘…the inspiration of the UNESCO Constitution, agreed 70 years ago, while reflecting new times and demands”.