Education and conflict
Norway has identified education as a priority in its humanitarian policy, allocating at least half of its aid to education in fragile situations. OPM presented its analysis of Norway’s investment, together with recommendations, at an Education and Conflict seminar in Oslo on 31 October 2013.
Some of the main findings from OPM’s study include:
- Norway distributed a total of 4.74 billion NOK (6% of total ODA) to education over the period 2010-12. Of this, an estimated1.28 billion NOK (27%) of Norwegian development aid to education was spent on education in fragile situations. This is a very conservative estimate based on official DAC coding. A more realistic estimate is that at least 50% of Norway’s ODA to education went to fragile situations. The main difference between the official statistics and this estimate is due to estimates for unearmarked funding to UNICEF and GPE that goes to education in fragile situations.
- At least 2% of Norway’s humanitarian aid goes to education in fragile situations. This is double the officially recorded amount
- Almost half of Norwegian education aid to multilateral organisations goes to fragile situations. According to the official statistics 9% of funding to education in fragile situations was channelled through multilateral organisations. However, this is undoubtedly an underestimate as the three largest multilateral recipients (UNICEF, GPE and UNESCO) receive between 90‐98% of funds as ‘global unspecified’ core and thematic funding.
- Nearly half of development aid to education in fragile situations was provided as support to governments but there appears to be no formal criteria for why these countries receive support directly;
Key recommendations include:
- Develop an Education Strategy that prioritises Education for All and defines Norway’s commitments to education in fragile situations
- Make clearer agreements with multilaterals about education priorities in fragile situations
- Ensure the amount of humanitarian aid to education meets a target of 4%
- Encourage the allocation of more funds to the education of refugees and IDPs
- Bridge the humanitarian – development gap in fragile and conflict affected situations
- Support the development of conflict sensitive education plans
- Clarify Norway’s position on the role of education in peacebuilding
- Continue funding the GMR and maintain a focus on education inequalities in fragile situations
- Clarify the added-value of channelling support through governments in fragile situations
- Channel more funding towards secondary education and teacher quality in fragile situations
- Increase funding to civil society organisations to work with youth in fragile situations
- Introduce a marker that tags education more clearly in the monitoring system