The Future of Education: It's coming, but will it get here fast enough?

Class two students line up to enter a classroom at the start of school in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso. Photo by: Kelley Lynch / GPE / CC BY-NC-ND

DUBAI — Education has long been notoriously slow to change. Most classrooms around the world look scarcely different than they did a century ago. But as the World Bank’s education lead Harry Patrinos told Devex at the Global Education & Skills Forum in Dubai, "the race is now being led by technology, and education is having trouble keeping up.” With automation and artificial intelligence likely to cut off the traditional path to development for many countries, which has included employing large numbers of workers in low-skill manufacturing, education systems simply aren’t ready.

Take India, itself a global leader in advanced technologies. Between 50 and 80 percent of its young college graduates are literate and numerate — but still considered “unemployable.” With 1 million young people entering the workforce each month in India, the country will have a hard time developing and eradicating poverty without a fundamental transformation of its education system.

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About the author

  • Raj kumardevex

    Raj Kumar

    Raj Kumar is the Founding President and Editor-in-Chief at Devex, the media platform for the global development community. He is a media leader and former humanitarian council chair for the World Economic Forum and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. His work has led him to more than 50 countries, where he has had the honor to meet many of the aid workers and development professionals who make up the Devex community. He is the author of the book "The Business of Changing the World," a go-to primer on the ideas, people, and technology disrupting the aid industry.