Pauline is a Professor of International Development having been awarded a Personal Chair at Newcastle. Over the last 20 years she has been researching how, in some of the poorest parts of the developing world, families make school choices for their children. She has directed research projects in India, Ghana, Nigeria, Kenya, Tanzania, Sierra Leone, Liberia, South Sudan and China. The research is of the utmost importance, owing to the misconceptions around the inabilities of illiterate and poor parents being able to make choices. Therefore my work focuses on dispelling myths and carrying out research that informs policy initiatives that are based on solutions from the grassroots and poor communities themselves. She has been instrumental in the implementation of an education voucher program in the slums of Delhi, India. The project also ran a randomized control trial (RCT) to consider the impact of the scheme and resulted in a longitudinal study lasting five years. Other areas of expertise include investigating children’s multiple intelligences and creativity in poor areas of Tanzania. She has also carried out research concerning the use of phonics in schools in India and China to improve reading.


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