Open seminar: "How Can Education Promote Social Progress?"

Discussing the work of the International Panel on Social Progress in the area of education.

Speaker is Professor Nico Cloete, University of Western Cape, South Africa, Center for Higher Education Transformation, South Africa, and University of Oslo.

Professor Nico Cloete

Professor Nico Cloete, University of Western Cape, South Africa. Photo: Shane Colvin/UiO

About the seminar

What can social science tell us about social change? To address this issue in 2014/15 the International Panel on Social Progress (IPSP) was established. The organizational structure and functioning of IPSP are similar to the well-known International Climate Panel.  IPSP is guided by an Advisory Committee chaired by Nobel prize winner Amartya Sen, and managed by a distinguished Steering Committee which is advised by an international Scientific Council co-chaired by Nancy Fraser, Ravi Kanbur and Helga Nowotny.

The Panel’s aim is to contribute to focusing attention to the policy and research questions having to do with the promotion of social justice in the world for the coming generations. While substantial progress has been made in a few domains, there are setbacks, challenges and dangers, and a strong message from the academic community on what can be done could be an important contribution. For that purpose the Panel will deliver in the fall of 2017 a global report on the perspectives for social progress in the various regions of the world in the coming decades. Each chapter of the report will be led by two Coordinating Lead Authors who will supervise the preparation of a chapter co-signed by about ten Lead Authors from various disciplines and with different regional experiences.

The Panel’s work and its 2017 report will cover a large number of areas, including Education. The ‘education chapter’ of the 2017 report will be entitled “How Can Education Promote Social Progress?” One of the Lead Authors of the chapter, professor Nico Cloete, University of Western Cape and CHET, South Africa, has recently been appointed as Professor II at the University of Oslo. He will present in this seminar the main debates, agreements and disagreements of IPSP’s working group on Education, bringing insights from the group’s second meeting, 10-12 February 2016, in Vienna. 

For more information about IPSP’s aims, scope, and involved scholars, see the Panel’s website:

Published Feb. 17, 2016 2:13 PM - Last modified Feb. 17, 2016 2:32 PM