Thousands attend a 3-day summit on education that sheds light on youth and refugees in a post-pandemic world.
Doha, Qatar – Some of the world’s leading experts in the fields of education, technology and economic development were convened in the Qatari capital for the 10th World Innovation Summit for Education (WISE).
The global education conference, organized by the Qatar Foundation, began on Tuesday under the banner of “Generations Unmute: Reclaiming our future through education” and is attended by more than 300 speakers from the region and around the world.
He was in Doha to share his views in over 200 panel sessions over the three-day event.
Since its inception in 2009, the summit has become one of the most important international gatherings on the future of education. This year, it managed to attract over 10,000 participants through a mix of in-person and online sessions.
One of the plenary sessions on Wednesday addressed a pressing issue in the Middle East and North Africa: the gap between education and employment among marginalized youth in conflict-torn regions.
The region hosts the largest population of refugees globally. From proxy wars to civil unrest, long-running humanitarian crises have forced millions from their homes and many sought refuge in neighboring countries already facing economic regression and political turmoil. Were.
The Middle East and North Africa region already had the highest rates of youth unemployment in the world at 25 percent according to the International Labor Organization (ILO), and speakers at the plenary session highlighted how the situation of marginalized youth and refugees The corona virus epidemic has further increased.
According to the ILO, COVID-19 has cost the global economy more than 100 million jobs, and job recovery is expected to be short.
Additionally, while many students around the world readily migrated to a virtual learning model during the pandemic, access to education for marginalized youth has stalled, leaving some to seek low-income jobs after secondary studies. Gave.
Filippo Grandi, the head of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, stressed the need for higher education and the inclusion of refugees in national programs, saying that access is a key element in “self-reliance”.
He said it is important that displaced youth have equal opportunities to “learn, grow and develop”.
Spark founder and CEO Yannick du Pont agreed, saying the link between higher education and employment is “very important” and is a “means to an end”.
But innumerable challenges stand in the way of marginalized youth in this field. For example, some host countries do not provide formal work or education to refugee communities.
Tehmina Akhtar of the United Nations Development Program said refugees also needed “additional and targeted support” to overcome adversity and succeed in the economy.
Sessions include discussions on education in the post-pandemic world, as well as “individualized” learning, which provides instruction to meet the diverse needs of students, and digital learning.
Wendy Kopp won the WISE Award for Education at this year’s summit. Coop is the CEO of Teach for All, a global network of independent organizations in 61 countries that work with marginalized children.
The award is the first of its kind global honor to honor an individual for his outstanding contribution to education.
“We see this award as an endorsement and recognition of our principle of change. Collective leadership is essential to solving the most pressing inequalities in education and reshaping the system so that it helps our youth navigate uncertainty. And prepare to shape a better future,” said Kopp, commenting on the win.
“Complex problems can only be solved through the collective efforts of many people, working together at all levels of the system.”