Supporting education sector analyses

IIEP-UNESCO Dakar provides technical support to African countries in conducting education and training sector analyses. An essential first step in deciding, planning and anticipating the future.

In Brief
  • An in-depth review of the current state of the education and training sector, taking into account the context and needs of each country. 
  • A reference methodology, co-developed by our partners, that has been proven successful for over 20 years on the continent and beyond.
  • An empirical and collaborative approach to strengthening education systems and stakeholders' capabilities. 
IIEP-UNESCO Dakar - Analyse sectorielle en éducation - Afrique
Pupil in a school in Enugu, south-eastern Nigeria © UNICEF/UN0270192/Knowles-Coursin

A decision-making tool

Sector analysis has been the core expertise of the office since its inception in 2001 and are the essence of our history and work. Based on factual information, this comprehensive diagnostic helps policy makers and ministry officials to:

  • understand the strengths and weaknesses of their national education and training system,
  • measure achievements and identify factors that determine or hinder the performance of the education system and the implementation of education policies.
  • provide food for thought on future reforms or to facilitate the preparation of a new education sector plan.
  • build a consensus on the state of affairs in the sector and promote the emergence of a shared vision with all stakeholders involved.
African countries have been supported in developing an analysis of the education and training sector since 2001.

A holistic vision

The sector studies carried out by IIEP-UNESCO Dakar provide a detailed analysis of a country's entire education system: from early childhood to higher education, including technical and vocational education and training (TVET) or non-formal education. Depending on the national context and the needs of each country, they may cover a wider or narrower spectrum of sub-sectors or focus on specific themes, with an à la carte approach. 

Find all our education sector analyses by country 

Our method

The IIEP-UNESCO approach to sector analysis is based on a methodology that has been developed and applied for two decades by our education economists and our network of experts. It has been developed in collaboration with the World Bank, UNICEF and the Global Partnership for Education. Regularly refined, this approach, recognised for its rigour and impartiality, now serves as a reference for assessing the education and training sector, including outside the African continent. This aproach is the subject of three complementary methodological guides, accessible to all as public goods. 

Access our methodological guides for education sector analysis

Education sector plan - Methodological guidelines - IIPE-UNESCO Dakar

Volume 1 - Volume 2 - Volume 3 

Taking into account the social, economic, humanitarian and demographic context of each country, our work examines both:

  • the strengths and limitations of education systems in terms of enrolment, quality of education, management or costs and financing;
  • their impacts on external efficiency.

To do this, we focus on collecting empirical data and looking for statistical evidence. Our analyses can thus make comparisons over time, between different comparable countries or between different geographical areas within the same country. The added value of our approach lies in this strong empirical dimension, guided by two central and complementary concerns: equity and efficiency. 

What sets us apart?

IIEP-UNESCO Dakar's technical support to countries is primarily aimed at strengthening the capabilities of national education systems and individual skills. 

Thus, education and training sector analyses are always carried out in conjunction with a national multi-sectoral team, set up at the beginning of the collaboration. It is generally composed of a person in charge of technical and scientific coordination, senior officials (education, vocational training, finance, civil service, family, etc.), technical and financial partners and members of civil society. 

“Working with the IIEP was a real learning experience. Each expert took the time to explain how things work and to respond to our questions. I come from the private sector and the academic world: this collaboration has been very instructive for me. We all learned a lot”. »

Sia Fasuluku
Director of Research, Planning and Development, Ministry of Technical and Higher Education, Sierra Leone

Areas of expertise