Learning Poverty and Education Pluralism: The Global Catholic Education Report 2021

Feb 16, 2021
Back to Events

Quentin WodonInternational Office of Catholic Education

François MabilleInternational Federation of Catholic Universities

Augusta MuthiganiCommission for Education and Religious Education, Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops

Halsey RogersWorld Bank

Catholic schools serve close to 62 million students globally at the preschool, primary, and secondary levels, with in addition more than 6 million students enrolled at the post-secondary level. By managing the largest non-governmental network of schools and universities in the world, the Catholic Church plays an important role in efforts to achieve SDG4, especially in low-income countries. In 2020, OIEC released the first Global Catholic Education Report. The second edition of the report for 2021 under the new collaborative Global Catholic Education project ( focuses on learning poverty, education pluralism, and the implications of the COVID-19 Crisis. The report explores the impact of the crisis on educational attainment and learning across countries, as well as the issue of education pluralism, suggesting that education pluralism should be taken into account when considering state support for nonprofit faith-based schools and universities. The report also discusses regulatory framework for Catholic schools and universities, as well as interventions that could improve educational outcomes. Finally, the report includes an updated statistical annex on enrollment trends in Catholic schools and universities in more than 100 countries. After a presentation summarizing the main findings from the Global Catholic Education Report 2021, panelists will share their views on how Catholic schools and universities globally could improve the education they provide and confront some of the most pressing challenges they face. 

Free and open to the public. The event will be held online over Zoom and will be livestreamed on YouTube. This event is organized with the Catholic Research Economists Discussion Organization (CREDO), Global Catholic EducationGlobal Researchers Advancing Catholic Education (GRACE), the International Federation of Catholic Universities (IFCU), the National Catholic Educational Association (NCEA), and the International Office of Catholic Education (OIEC). This event is cosponsored by America Media, and the Roche Center for Catholic Education.



Quentin Wodon, International Office of Catholic Education


François Mabille, Secretary General, International Federation of Catholic Universities  

Augusta Muthigani, National Executive Secretary, Commission for Education and Religious Education, Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops 

Halsey Rogers, Lead Economist, World Bank, Washington, DC

Quentin Wodon is a lead economist with the World Bank’s Education Global Practice and a project manager (pro bono) with the International Office of Catholic Education. He previously managed the World Bank’s unit on faith and development, served as lead poverty specialist for Africa, and worked as an economist and senior economist for Latin America. He has taught at the University of Namur, American University, and Georgetown University, and served as Distinguished Research Affiliate with the University of Notre Dame. He holds PhDs in economics, environmental science, health sciences, and theology, and has authored more than 500 publications. He has served as associate editor for journals and as president of the Society of Government Economists and the Association for Social Economics. Trained in business engineering, he worked in marketing for Procter & Gamble before shifting career nearly 30 years ago to join ATD Fourth World, a nonprofit working with the extreme poor. He has tried to remain faithful to the cause of ending extreme poverty ever since.


François Mabille is Secretary General of the International Federation of Catholic Universities. He was previously Professor of political science at the Université Catholique de Lille (2010-2016) and statutory researcher of the Societies, Religion and Secularism Group of the National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS). He started his career at the Institut Catholique de Paris in 1998 where he founded the Research Centre on Peace with Joseph Maïla, and the master’s degree program in International Solidarity and Actions at the Faculty of Social Sciences and Economics. François Mabille was Dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences and Economics for five years during which were created amongst others: the master in economic intelligence, a master in political science, a master in social economics, a master in environmental sciences and also the first University Diploma for the training of religious dignitaries. In 2010, François Mabille joined the Université Catholique de Lille where he teaches international relations at the Faculty of Law. In 2011, he created the chair ‘social stakes and prospective’, of which he is the holder, and took part in the activities of the International Institute of prospective on innovative ecosystems created in 2014. He also provided expertise documents for the International Organisation of La Francophonie and the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs. He collaborated for many years with the Charles Leopold Mayer Foundation. He was appointed Secretary General of IFCU for a 3-years mandate effective September 2016, renewed in November 2019 for the same period.

Augusta Muthigani is National Executive Secretary of the Commission for Education and Religious Education, Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops. In this position, she oversees over 8000 Catholic private and sponsored public schools in Kenya, and has been involved in education policy development, management and implementation since 1990. She coordinates and supervises various skills building and values development programs targeting youth in Kenyan schools. At the national level she plays an integral role in planning and coordinating education activities for the Catholic schools. She is a member of the Committee on Child Protection and the National Committee coordinating Curriculum reforms in Kenya, a council member of Kenya Institute of Special Education, and a member of the Academic Committee at the Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development. As a representative of the Catholic Church, she works closely with the National Council of Churches of Kenya, Supreme Council of Muslims in Kenya and Hindu Council in Kenya on matters related to education. She is also a member of Kenya's COVID-19 Education Response Committee.

Halsey Rogers is Lead Economist with the World Bank’s Education Global Practice and served as Co-Director of the World Development Report 2018: Learning to Realize Education’s Promise.  He now helps lead initiatives that advance the WDR vision, including the global Learning Poverty estimates and the Global Education Policy Dashboard.  In the past, he represented the Bank in SDG negotiations on education, led the Bank’s global teacher-policy research, and co-authored the Bank’s Education Strategy 2020: Learning for All.  Rogers has published widely in peer-reviewed journals, including the Quarterly Journal of Economics and the Journal of Economic Perspectives, and has advised governments in every region of the world.  He works on the quality of service delivery in education, teacher effectiveness, outcome and process metrics, families’ education investments, aid effectiveness, and development strategy, among other topics.  He also co-authored Growth and Empowerment: Making Development Happen (MIT Press).  Previously, Rogers served as advisor to former World Bank chief economists Joseph Stiglitz and Nicholas Stern and as senior economist in the Bank’s research department.  Prior to joining the Bank, he served with the Council of Economic Advisors at the White House, UC Berkeley, the Indonesian Ministry of Finance (Jakarta), and the Korea Development Institute (Seoul).  He holds an AB from Princeton University, an MPP from the Harvard Kennedy School, and a PhD in Economics from UC Berkeley.