The Raising Learning Outcomes in Education Systems Research Programme (RLO) was launched in 2014 to commission world-class and cutting-edge social science research that addresses key questions on learning outcomes within education systems in developing countries. Part of a broader strategic partnership between the UK’s Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO, formerly DFID) and ESRC, a total of £20 million will be awarded through three research calls, focused on effective teaching, challenging contexts and accountability, respectively.

The Programme aims to build the evidence on critical policy areas which currently constrain education systems in developing countries. To do this, the Programme will fund a Portfolio of research to increase understanding of how complex relationships between elements of the education system, the context in which they are embedded, and the dynamics operating within that system impact on efforts to raise learning outcomes for all.

The Impact Initiative

In addition to building high quality evidence, the Programme also aims to ensure that the research is used and provides policymakers and practitioners with concrete ideas on how to improve learning for all. The Impact Initiative was contracted in spring 2015 to support the uptake and impact of research funded under the Raising Learning Outcomes Programme and the Joint Fund. Visit the Impact Initiative for more information.

In addition, a Programme Research Lead was appointed in January 2017 to deliver three aims: to support and provide evidence of the programmes scientific, conceptual and methodological contributions; to maximise best practice between grants across calls and around cross-cutting themes; and to implement and strengthen cohort-building opportunities and activities.