Rethinking Education: Towards a global common good?”, was launched at a special ceremony at UNESCO Headquarters, Paris on 4 November following a High-Level Meeting to adopt the Education 2030 Framework for Action.
The publication is the fruit of the work of a Senior Experts’ Group established by UNESCO’s Director-General Irina Bokova to rethink education in a new global context of learning.
Opening the ceremony which took place during the 38th UNESCO General Conference Assistant Director-General for Education Mr Qian Tang said both Rethinking Education and the publication which inspired it, the Delors Report, Learning: the treasure within, served as timely reminders of the breadth of UNESCO’s role.
“UNESCO is not only a technical organization but also an intellectual organization whose role is to stimulate debate. Both these reports stimulate debate, and Rethinking Education stimulates debate relevant in today’s context” he said.
Co-chair of the Senior Experts’ Group Professor John Morgan said: “This is a short book on a big topic.”
He said Rethinking Education broadens thinking on education from a Eurocentric to a global view and reiterated the fact that education is a basic right and a public good.
Professor Georges Haddad, member of the senior experts’ group, said: “UNESCO is the place to devise the world of tomorrow. This publication exists to be debated and analyzed at all levels of education. The mission of UNESCO is to evaluate knowledge and competencies.
“Education is at the heart of human adventure but in the new global context the relationship between education and knowledge has changed with all knowledge available to all people 24/7”.
The publication is a call for policy dialogue on the principles that govern education in the current context of change, complexity and uncertainty. It is also a call for public debate on the purpose and organization of education as a collective endeavour and responsibility.
In light of the adoption of the Education 2030 Agenda, encapsulated in the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, Rethinking Education can be used as a normative reference to contextualize the Education 2030 goal to ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and lifelong learning for all by 2030.
In the foreword to the publication Director-General Irina Bokova states: “There is no more powerful transformative force than education – to promote human rights and dignity, to eradicate poverty and deepen sustainability, to build a better future for all... This is why we must think big again and re-vision education in a changing world. For this, we need debate and dialogue across the board, and that is the goal of this publication – to be both aspirational and inspirational, to speak to new times”,