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Education & Development
Education is essential in helping the lower developed countries strive [LL2]to catch up with the Western World. The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), a set of goals aimed at helping the worlds poorest, consists of eight goals that can be accomplished with the use of education. These goals were developed in 2000 and established after the Millennium Summit of the United Nations as a target for 2015. Not all of the goals were accomplished by 2015, but there has been a great amount of progress achieved. Education has had an extreme impact on some of these goals, and if it is used correctly will help to solve the problems of the world’s poorest places. My goal is to explain these issues and how they can be resolved with the use of education.
The first goal is to eradicate extreme poverty and hunger. This consists of a few sub-groups as well, but I will be more general with my explanation. Education promotes and inspires entrepreneurship, which helps to generate positive externalities like work, loans, businesses, ect. The United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) report that each additional year of schooling can increase an individual’s wages by 10% per year. This suggests after ten years an individual could be making one hundred times the amount they were a decade ago[LL3]! The use of education to teach the skills necessary to create complex markets has and will continue to help the less developed countries.
The second goal, achieve universal primary education, obviously relates directly to education. This goal means children should go to school young and complete an appropriate amount of education, similar to what we do in the U.S. The UESCO reports, “Education provides knowledge and skills, encourages new behavior and increases individual and collective empowerment, education is at the center of social and economic development.” There are still over 50 million children out of school, but significant progress has been accomplished since 2000 when the number was much higher. Another important factor is reaching equity in education because over half of the 50 plus million children out of school are girls. Educating the children can help these future generations from making poor choices later in life, and it can serve as a gateway to better decision-making. Several factors, however, hinder the world from achieving this goal. Cultural differences inhibit many women from continuing education because of lower marriage ages. Natural disasters also play a large part in preventing many places from providing education. It is critically important to solve this goal and help the poor “get on their feet.”
The third goal is to promote gender equality and empower women. Equal schooling for boys and girls is probably the most effective policy for achieving all of the MDGs. The UNESCO reports, “Evidence shows a strong correlation between educating women and girls and an increase in women’searnings, improved child and family health and nutrition, an increase in school enrolment, protection against HIV infection, higher maternal and child life expectancy, reduced fertility rates and delayed marriage.” Increasing women’s earning can help to eliminate poverty. Improved health will help to prevent diseases, which is another MDG. Basically all the results from equal education of girls and boys directly impacts at least one aspect of every MDG.
Goal four of the MDGs is to reduce child mortality. Research shows in numerous studies that education, specifically of women, significantly improves family health, nutrition, and reduces the number of children who die before the age of five. One study in the Philippines reveals that a mother with primary education lowers the child mortality rate by nearly fifty percent! Development is considered by many to be the key to solving all the problems. It is also said that reducing child fertility, by lowering child mortality, is the key to development, so one could say education is a key player in linking all of these factors together.
Goal five focuses on improving maternal health. As mentioned previously, education is linked to improving maternal health. Educating the women is one of the best ways to prevent them from dying. The UNESCO reports, “The world’s most dangerous place to give birth is Niger, where women face a 1 in 7 chance in fatality.” Over half of a million women die each year in childbirth. Prenatal education can tremendously combat the chances of women dying in childbirth. This also improves the lives of the children and future generations.
Goal six is to combat HIV/AIDS, malaria, and other diseases. Diseases like HIV/AIDS are responsible for multiple millions of deaths per year in lower developed countries. Educating the population about the diseases can help to prevent the chances of getting a disease or at least spreading the disease once contaminated. The example of the mosquito nets to protect inhabitants of malaria-infested locations is a prime example of how education can prevent the spread of diseases. In America public schools teaching sex education to the children has also been proven to lower the spread of diseases. Clearly education is essential in completing the spread of disease.
The seventh goal is to ensure environmental sustainability. This is often thought of as ensuring that the future generations have at least the same or better quality of life as we currently do. This goal has made significant progress over the recent years with the help of education. The United Nations website states, “Between 1990 and 2012, 2.3 billion people gained access to improved drinking water sources.” Educating countries on proper allocation of resources, environmental problems, positive regulations, and much more will contribute to accomplishing this goal. [LL4]
Goal eight was implemented to develop global partnerships for development. The UNESCO reports, “Aid for basic education in the world’s poorest countries came to only US$2.7 billion in 2007, a far cry from the $US16 billion needed annually to reach education-related development goals. Developing countries can also do more – by making education a priority. If low-income countries spent 0.7% of their GDP on education, it could make about US$7 billion available per year for basic education.” The United Nations countries do contribute aid to the developing countries, but only a few make their actual quota or above. Perhaps if all the nations would contribute the correct amount to education and the lower developed countries would correctly allocate their funds, the world would be on a faster pace of development[LL5].
Education will be a main driver in the forward progression of our planet, and it is imperative to the advancements of lower developed countries. The educated and more developed countries have a moral obligation to share the information with those who are less fortunate. If the worlds countries can communicate globally and effectively, the education necessary to develop, the planet will become a more advanced, safe, productive place to live.
[LL1]Analysis is a bit short… Had more room for critical/economic analysis of these solutions.
A few minor grammatical issues.
Organization is good.
Missing discussion of alternative perspectives and costs… Esp. worth discussing whether education along will be sufficient to propel developing nation’s economic growth upwards and whether this seems like a likely/practical solution to you (or other researchers).
Another issue is that this appears to stem essentially from a single article and after reviewing that article this feels very much like a book report style of paper… largely taking their ideas and reforming them… without as much of your own critical analysis and/or competing ideas brought to bear.
[LL2]Help countries strive, or help countries increase economic growth?
[LL3]Not sure about your math here… maybe it’s just the way you worded it. Gains after 10 years of schooling? Would be more like 100% (or 2-times as much) if the data is accurate.
[LL4]How to do this (how to education countries)? And what do you mean by these terms (e..g what is proper allocation of resrouces?)?
[LL5]Good point/nice wording.
But is this likely? Is there hope from any other avenue? Any other evidence that might suggest that growth will increase without this level of aid?
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