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International Bureau of Education
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Strategy to make the UNESCO International Bureau of Education (IBE) UNESCO's centre of excellence for curricula



The International Bureau of Education (IBE) is the oldest of the UNESCO Institutes, founded in 1925 and fully integrated into the Organization in 1969. It is UNESCO’s institute specializing in the field of curriculum. Its global and comparative perspectives on curriculum, combined with its reach, networks and experience, make the IBE unique in the world among institutions in this field. As recognized in recent resolution of the General Conference and decision of the IBE Council, UNESCO and its Member States and partners require the IBE to be a more forward-looking and cutting-edge Institute, referred to as a “Centre of Excellence” (CoE).

The purposes of this paper are to:
  • provide a rationale for why the IBE should become UNESCO’s CoE in curriculum;
  • describe the essential characteristics and functions of such a CoE; and
  • outline a strategy that will enable the IBE to be recognized as a leading global institution on curriculum and curriculum-related matters, and, in so doing, become a critical contributor to UNESCO’s strategy for the achievement of its priorities in the field of education, most notably quality Education for All (EFA).