Technology and Education for the most marginalised Post-COVID-19

Malawi classroom bright
School Classroom in Malawi

Members of the UNECSO Chair in ICT4D are involved in an exciting new collaborative initiative to develop a Report by September 2020 on practical guidance for governments on using digital technologies to enhance their education systems once the immediate crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic has passed (see Summary).  This Report will be short, succinct and practical, and will also include a series of brief Guidance Notes addressing the most important actvities that governments need to address to ensure the inclusion of some of the world’s poorest and most marginalised people.  The work is being funded by DFID and the World Bank through their EdTech Hub.


Core team

This initiative is being led and crafted by a core team consisting of (listed in alphabetical order):

  • Alicja Pawluczuk (UNU Institute in Macau)
  • Azra Naseem (Aga Khan University, Pakistan)
  • Christopher Yoo (Univeristy of Pennsylvania, USA)
  • Mohamed Shareef (Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Communication, Science and Technology, Maldives)
  • Paul Spiesberger (Chair of, Co-Head of BRIC at INSOTU Wien, Austria)
  • Paul West (Creative Commons Chapter, South Africa)
  • Tim Unwin (UNESCO Chair in ICT4D, UK)


The core team is supported by a distinguished panel of advisors:

  • Alex Wong (ITU, Switzerland)
  • Bitange Ndemo (ICT Champion and University of Nairobi, Kenya)
  • Caroline Wright (DG BESA, UK)
  • John Nasasira (Head of 4thIR Task Force, Uganda)
  • Keith Krueger (CEO Consortium for School Networking, USA)
  • Mike Trucano (World Bank, USA)
  • Vanessa Dreier (GIZ, Germany)
  • Waleed Al Ali (Mohammed Bin Rashid Global Initiatives, UAE)

EdTech Hub Liaison

Our two key liaison people in the EdTech Hub are:

  • David Hollow (Jigsaw Consult and Director, EdTech Hub)
  • Jamie Procter (DFID and EdTech Hub)


The following colleagues working with members of our core team or advisers have also contributed very usefully to our deliberations:

  • Leon Gwaka (Univeristy of Pennsylvania, USA)
  • Müge Haseki (Univeristy of Pennsylvania, USA)


Boys at school in Tharparkar, Pakistan
Boys at school in Tharparkar, Pakistan

Our work began in June 2020 and draws largely on an extensive consultation process to identify the main priorities on which our Report should concentrate.  We are working with groups from Civil Society and International Organisations, the Private Sector, Governments, UN Agencies and Academics, as well as regional consultations from Africa, Asia/Pacific/Middle East and the Americas to help shape our recommended priorties.  We would very much like to thank those who have contributed to these consultations and crafted the mind-maps available below.

Consultation output mind-maps

Example of mind-map

The outputs of our consultations were in the form of co-created mind-maps produced by  the participants, and these were made available here on 7th July 2020 under a Creative Commons CC BY Licence through the links below.  Each group was asked to identify their top priority recommendations to governments for using digital technologies to enhance learning by the most marginalised in a post-COVID-19 context:

These mind-maps can be summarised in the word map below prepared by Paul Spiesberger  which represents the frequency of words included in all of these mind-maps.

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As well as these consultations, we also interviewed a small number of people who provided us with additional specific insights.  In total, 43 women and 44 men from 34 countries have contributed to our thoughts in crafting the Report and Guidance Notes.

The Report and Guidance Notes

Our final Report and Guidance Notes will be made freely available through a Creative Commons CC BY license, and we will also be sharing our evolving outputs here for comment, feedback and use.  The initial Report will be published in both English and French, but we are also seeking support to make it available in other languages.  We will also be making available relevant infographics and slide-deck templates relating to the guidance notes and core themes.  We are very grateful to all of the individuals and organisations who have contributed to and co-authored parts of these outputs.

The pre-print draft of the full Report in Three Acts is available below:

A final summary of the recommendations is also shown below:

Draft documents for consultation and review

An earlier final draft of the Report is available through the link below:

Earlier draft versions of different parts of the Report were also made available through the links below, and many of the comments received from people who read them have been incorporated into the final draft above:

Examples of the initial drafts of Guidance Notes can also be found below (comments received were also included in the final draft of the full report avalable above):

Please share your thoughts with us about how these materials can be improved so that they are more valuable to governments that are committed to using digital technologies to ensure that they have resilient education systems in place that serve all of their citizens, and especially the poorest and most marginalised.

Once the final report is published, new links to each of the final Guidance Notes will replace these drafts (the pre-print draft of the Report available above contains the latest versions of all of these Guidance Notes).


We are delighted to have had contributions and support from the following organisations in crafting some of these Guidance Notes, and are very grateful to all of the individuals within them who have drafted material for us:

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Contact us

Please use our Contact Page to get in touch, or if you know our e- mail addresses do just send us an e-mail.

Please use #Emmpostcovid19 (Education for the Most Marginalised post-COVID-19) to refer to and share our work on social media.


This work is licensed under a Creative Commons – Attribution 4.0 International License.

Any part of this document may be reproduced without permission, but with attribution to The EdTech Hub and the authors. Our work is based on existing good practices, and more details on these principles can be found at Please feel free to use and share this information, but kindly respect the copyright of all included works and share any adapted versions of this work.