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31 May – 1 June 2020: Philanthropy in Education: Reflections and Actions towards 2030

Confirmed Speakers
Call for Papers
Venue and travel grant
Practical information

About the Symposium

The symposium series Philanthropy in Education: Global Trends, Regional Differences and Diverse Perspectives is an initiative that was launched in 2016 by NORRAG, and the Sheikh Saud bin Saqr Al Qasimi Foundation. It seeks to facilitate greater understanding and collaboration between philanthropic organizations, national policymakers, representatives of international organizations and academics working in the field of education. To date, symposia have been held in Switzerland, South Africa, China, India and the United States. The final symposium of the series will be held in the United Arab Emirates on May 31st & June 1st 2020.

As the number and type of philanthropic organizations continue to grow across the world and they become more influential actors in the education and development sectors, there is a demand to deepen collective knowledge of the sector. Arguably, education and health are the two sectors that attract the largest amount of financial support by individuals, corporations, and foundations. Furthermore, international organizations tend to highlight the importance of cooperating with new partners to achieve the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals. While some studies have highlighted the complementary role that philanthropic institutions play in the distribution of public goods, such as education, other studies have raised concerns related to equity, accountability, neutrality, effectiveness, and efficiency. In addition, a major debate has emerged over the past few years concerning “new philanthropy,” notably the focus on results-based philanthropic giving, as well as the vision of “disruption” and innovation as promoted by technology-focused philanthropies. The final symposium will provide a forum to discuss empirical research on philanthropy and education, as well as to hear the experience of practitioners in the field, and address related themes throughout the symposium series. Similar to the regional symposiums, the final global symposium, which will be held in the UAE, invites presenters to discuss new trends in the field of philanthropic giving and analyse the new opportunities and new challenges associated with these trends. In addition, there will be several special speakers to open the sessions.

Confirmed Speakers

  1. Dr Antonio Olmedo, Professor at the College of Education, University of Bristol, UK
  2. Dr Alejandra Cardini, Education Program Director, CIPPEC, Argentina
  3. Dr Dana Brakman Reiser, Professor of Law at Brooklyn Law School, USA


Call for Papers

In addition to facilitating engagement between actors, the final symposium continues to seek to enrich the current body of research. It invites researchers, practitioners, and policymakers to submit papers that explore philanthropic activity in the education sectors. Perspectives from any education/philanthropy related discipline are encouraged, as are diverse methodologies. While not required to fall into one of these categories, papers may be related to:

  1. Datafication and results-based financing in philanthropy
  2. Philanthropy, partnerships and power
  3. Corporate philanthropy’s impact on education and development in the Global South
  4. Philanthropy’s role in disrupting the public sector and stimulating innovation
  5. Philanthropy and SDG 4

Submissions from both academic and philanthropic organizations are welcome. Accepted submissions will present in parallel sessions, with 15-20 minutes for each presentation followed by time for discussion. Papers presented at the final Symposium in Ras Al Khaimah, UAE will be published online and disseminated by the initiators of the series.

Download the call for paper

Abstract Details

Language: English

Length: 200-300 words (excluding title, author information, and references)

Format: Microsoft Word

Deadline: December 23, 2019

For academic submissions, please follow this structure:

  1. Title
  2. Background: Explains the purpose of the work and provides a brief description of the problem/research question addressed, and its importance and contribution to existing research
  3. Methods: Indicates the theoretical-methodological approach used and it limitations
  4. Results: Clearly presents primary findings of the study
  5. Conclusion: Briefly discusses the main outcome of the study in relation to the research question
  6. Relevance to philanthropy in education
  7. Incorporate implications for policymakers and future research

For submissions from philanthropic institutions, please follow this structure:

  1. Title
  2. Description
  3. Implications/Recommendations

Abstract proposals should be emailed to philanthropyineducation@gmail.com. Please also include paper title, author name(s), title(s), institution affiliation(s) and contact email(s) in a separate Word document. All abstracts will be compiled and sent to a committee for blind review.

Registration Fee

The registration fee is 350 AED ($95 USD) for all attendees, except for students who have a reduced fee of 200 AED ($55 USD). The registration fee for presenters must be paid by April 1, 2020. Failure to pay the registration fee by this date will result in cancellation of event participation. Registration will open on February 17, 2020.


Location and Dates

Hosted by the Sheikh Saud bin Saqr Foundation for Policy Research in Ras Al Khaimah, UAE at the

Hilton Garden Inn Ras Al Khaimah on May 31st – June 1st, 2020.

Travel & Accommodation

Participants will be responsible for their own travel expenses. However, the Hilton Garden Inn Ras Al Khaimah, has provided a special rate for attendees of the symposium at 246 AED (67 USD) per night, inclusive of all taxes and fees. This special rate will be shared after paying the registration fee for the event, registration will open in February with the acceptance notifications.

Travel Grant

In addition, a limited number of travel grants (up to USD 1,000 + registration fee waived) will be made available for selected presenters and participants (academics, practitioners, students) from the Global South. To apply for the grant, please complete this form and send any questions to philanthropyineducation@gmail.com


Key Deadlines

Abstract Deadline: December 23, 2019

Notification of Acceptance & Registration opens: February 17, 2020

First Draft of Paper & Registration Fee Deadline: April 1, 2020

Final Paper Deadline: June 30, 2020

Co-Sponsors

For more information about the co-sponsors, visit:

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