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26 Nov 2018

3-4 December 2018, Geneva: kick-off meeting for the COFER Innovative Financing in Education and Development

On 3-4 December, NORRAG organised the kick-off meeting for the COFER Innovative Financing in Education and Development: Case Studies and Multi-Media Material for E­Learning project, which is partially funded by swissuniversities Development and Cooperation Network (SUDAC). NORRAG welcomed representatives from the six partner organizations from Switzerland, Argentina, China, India and South Africa of this project. The objective of the project is to develop eLearning materials based on research and field-based case studies on the various innovative financing mechanisms used to complement more traditional forms of financing from government tax revenues and international aid.

The meeting successfully built common understandings on critical aspects of the project. Discussions and workshops included the definition of the project approach, the potential target population of the course and the capacity gaps that shall be tackled. It was also an occasion to consolidate the consortium inputs on the course content, especially on the learning outcomes, issues and topics that will be addressed, including through a learning case studies approach. As next steps, participants agreed on what their roles and responsibilities shall be for a coordinated development of the course content.

Members of the COFER project from left to right (back row first): Ajay Singh (Tata Institute of Social Sciences), Marina Dreux Frotté (NORRAG), Teng Jun (Beijing Normal University), Arushi Terway (NORRAG), Gita Steiner-Khamsi (NORRAG), Marina Avelar (NORRAG), Aleesha Taylor (Herald Advisors), Aunnie Patton Power (University of Cape Town), Alexandra Draxler (NORRAG), Cathryn Magno (University of Fribourg), Anna Becker (University of Fribourg), Nicholas Burnett (Advisor), Archana Mehendale (Tata Institute of Social Sciences), Joost Monks (NORRAG), Felicitas Acosta (Universidad Nacional de General Sarmiento), and Markus Maurer (Zurich University of Teacher Education, excused).

This project, which contributes to NORRAG’s knowledge production and capacity building goals, assembles scholars who are experts in the field of innovative financing in education from around the globe. Together they will engage in research and develop real world analytical case studies on the various innovative financing mechanisms such as results-based financing, philanthropic giving, corporate social responsibility programs, remittances, Income Share Agreements diaspora bonds, and social impact bonds. These innovative financing mechanisms are used to complement more traditional forms of financing from government tax revenues and international aid.

The research and the blended-learning educational material developed through this project will address the existing knowledge and capacity gap for professionals working in the education financing space to develop a nuanced understanding within three spheres:

  • Technical aspects of financial design of innovative financing mechanisms
  • Analyse diverse perspectives, opportunities, and challenges in utilizing these mechanisms for SDG4
  • Examine the complexities that emerge in the conceptualization and application to the field of education.

Project partners:

  • NORRAG, an associate programme of the Graduate Institute, Geneva,
  • University of Fribourg (Switzerland)
  • Zurich University of Teacher Education (Switzerland)
  • Universidad Nacional de General Sarmiento in Buenos Aires (Argentina)
  • Beijing Normal University (China)
  • Tata Institute of Social Sciences in Mumbai (India)
  • the University of Cape Town (South Africa)

Project summary on COFER website

For more information about the project please contact: or

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