The basic premise of the paper is secondary and higher education do
contribute to development; they have poverty-alleviating effect as well.
The paper reviews the available research evidence to show that much of
the research on the role of secondary and higher education concentrated
on its effect on economic growth and ignored its relation to poverty
reduction and with human development indicators, which led many policy
makers to argue that secondary and more specifically higher education do
not reduce poverty; and it is only literacy and primary education that
are related to poverty and human development. However, the limited
research evidence shows that secondary and higher education contributes
not only to economic growth, but also to reduction in poverty and
improvement in human development indicators.
Using most recent international statistics on poverty and development
indictors, it is attempted to further show with simple regression
equations that the general presumption on the weak or negligible role of
secondary and higher education in development is not valid and that post
elementary education is important for reduction in poverty, in improving
infant mortality and life expectancy, and for economic growth.
Accordingly, it also pleads for sound and comprehensive education
policies that recognise the importance of not just elementary education,
but also of secondary and higher education and for integration of
educational planning with development planning.
Centre of African Studies, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, UK, 87 pp.
The role of post-basic education in alleviation of poverty and development. Post-Basic Education and Training Working Paper Series - Nº 7