These past three weeks have been so busy, filled with lots of work before most of my team left on holiday. I am now more than half way through my internship, and I only have a few more weeks in the beautiful city of Geneva. BUT there is still a lot to learn and many fun experiences to be had. Of that I am certain.
A few weeks ago, I had a unique opportunity to help with a manuscript review that is set to be published early next year from a partner office in Ethiopia. Two of my classmates from Penn are currently working at there (shout out to Tyler and Kathleen), so it was fun to see some of the ways in which our institutes support and connect with one another.
The manuscript will be about how the capabilities approach, a term coined by economist Amartya Sen, applies to and can be utilized in the context of inclusive education. When I first heard that I would get to help review the manuscript, I was so excited. And THEN when I realized it would be on this topic I was thrilled.
So, I realize for some of you my excitement on this might seem a little exaggerated. I can guarantee you that this isn’t the case. Let me explain. First, I really love the capabilities approach to international development. Sure, there are definitely some aspects that can not possibly work in all contexts (but what does?!), but overall, I think this framework for developnent is rather solid. You can read about it here.…let me know what you think!
What many people do know, however, is that I am extremely passionate about inclusive education, so anthing that seeks to further the field is something that I will gladly read. The combination of inclusive education and the capabilities approach is something that is just recently starting to garner the attention of some of the world’s top academics and practitioners, which is very encouraging to me since I had previously researched this topic thoroughly for my presentation at the Comparative and International Education Society (CIES) conference earlier this year in Vancouver, Canada. While my aim was to compare best practices in various South Asian contexts over the past few decades in light of Education for All and the new Sustainable Development Goals, this new manuscript applied the approach to specific case studies. It was a fascinating read and I am confident it will make waves in the field of inclusive education and development in the near future.
I’m grateful for that opportunity and this one, serving as yet another reminder how it sometimes pays to leave your comfort zone.
With Love from Geneva,