Keynote Speech: Xavier Bonal, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona
Comments: Pier Paolo Pasqualoni (Universität Klagenfurt), Lydia Walter (Austrian UN Youth Delegate 2014), Nafisa Baboo (Light for the World)
The role of education in the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)
‘Education is a major catalyst for development’. This is one of the messages of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). However, for millions of children the promises made by the international community in the MGDs have delivered too little and too slowly. Inclusive and equitable quality education for all remains an unachieved goal.
This September, the UN General Assembly will adopt new Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) which will replace the MDGs. They will be much broader in scope and applicable to all countries worldwide, including Austria.
What role will the SDGs attribute to education? To what extent are their education goals an improvement to the MDGs and the Education for All (EFA) process? What relevance do the issues of educational equity and education quality have for the SDG agenda? And is it really true that ‘education is a major catalyst for development’?
Prof. Xavier Bonal, expert in international education, partly disagrees, contending that education can also be a powerful instrument to maintain social injustice. He will discuss these and other questions related to the future of education with other education experts. Apart from the global perspective there will also be time to discuss what the new education goals could mean for Austria.