Press Releases


Brigid Janssen
Phone: (202) 458-4698
Fax: (202) 974-4384

WASHINGTON, D.C., May 3, 1999 – Private schools in developing countries provide innovative alternative education that bolsters development rather than introducing social inequality, according to a new book published jointly by the International Finance Corporation and the Institute of Economic Affairs, The Global Education Industry: Lessons from Private Education in Developing Countries.
Author James Tooley uses examples from Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, India, Indonesia, Peru, Romania, Russia, South Africa, Zimbabwe and other countries to conclude that changes in private education in the developing world could have a dramatic impact on the lives of millions of people.
He finds that, contrary to some expectations, the private education sector is large and growing, it is innovative, and it is not the exclusive domain of the wealthy. Professor Tooley challenges the conventional wisdom that private education in developing countries creates social and economic rifts, citing evidence that private schools equalize by providing creative programs for social responsibility, subsidized attendance, and student loan programs.
The book focuses on the regulatory regime as one of the key factors that can hamper or facilitate the private education sector. It outlines how innovative private education sector can influence the education policy of international agencies and national governments and considers how for-profit education enterprises can promote equitable development.
James Tooley is professor of education policy at the University of Newcastle, Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom. He publishes widely in scholarly journals and in such periodicals as the Times Higher Education Supplement Guardian Education, DailyTelegraph, Wall Street Journal, and Sunday Times. His other publications include Education without the State (1996) and Reclaiming Education: Challenging the Policy Agenda, which will be published this year. He holds a Ph.D. in education from the Institute of Education, University of London.
The International Finance Corporation, part of the World Bank Group, fosters economic growth in the developing world by financing private sector investments, mobilizing capital in the international financial markets, and providing technical assistance and advice to governments and businesses. A significant amount of the funding for the original study upon which this book was based was provided by the government of Japan, through a trust fund that it maintains with IFC.
To obtain a copy of this publication, please contact the IFC Corporate Relations at (202) 473-7711 or send an e-mail request to Vincent Yemoh at