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Prof Geeta Kingdon
UCL Institute of Education
20 Bedford Way
Tel: 02030738316
  • Chair of Education and International Development
  • IOE - Education, Practice & Society
  • UCL Institute of Education

Geeta Gandhi Kingdon is Professor at the UCL Institute of Education, University College London, where she holds the Chair of ‘Education Economics and International Development’.  Prior to this, she worked for 10 years at the Department of Economics, University of Oxford.

She has a BSc Hons. in Economics from the London School of Economics, and MSc and DPhil in Development Economics from the University of Oxford.

A believer in making public policy based on evidence of what works, rather than on hunch, ideology or political expediency, Professor Kingdon uses her research to advise donor agencies such as the World Bank, EU and the UK DFID on their education-related aid to developing countries.

She has also frequently been adviser to the Indian central and state governments. At the national level, she has been a member of the Human Resource Development Ministry’s ‘Joint Review Missions’ of Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan, the Universal Basic Education for All programme, and of the Secondary education programme.  She is a member of the Uttar Pradesh Secondary Education Board, and also serves on the Government of Uttar Pradesh’s Advisory Committee on Basic Education. She recently served on the High Level Committee for advising the Government of Uttar Pradesh on attracting private investment into Higher Education. 

To disseminate her policy-relevant research findings widely in order to influence policy thinking, Professor Kingdon frequently writes opinion editorials in newspapers, having published recently in the New York Times and in influential Indian dailies such as the Indian Express, The Hindu, Times of India, and Hindustan Times.

Professor Kingdon does extensive refereeing for academic journals and for research-grant applications, serves on the editorial board of several economics journals, and has raised or co-raised research grants from the DFID, the Spencer Foundation, the Nuffield Foundation, the Sutton Trust, the Rowntree Foundation, the Wellcome Trust, Ford Foundation, World Bank and the European Union.

In 2013, Professor Kingdon was awarded an Honorary Doctorate by Kingston University London for “her outstanding contributions to education and development”. 

Professor Kingdon is also President of the City Montessori School, Lucknow, a non-profit registered society.

Research Groups
Research Summary

Professor Kingdon’s interests are centred in Economics of Education, and her geographical area of research has been mostly the countries of South Asia, where she has researched school effectiveness, the determinants of student achievement; the role of private and public schools; the relative effectiveness of contract and regular teachers; gender bias in the within-household allocation of education expenditure; the labour market outcomes of education; and the political economy of education, including the role of teacher unions. Her research interests also encompass Labour Economics and the Economics of Happiness. 

Her research is based mostly on statistical analysis of datasets.  She has over 80 papers published in leading peer-reviewed journals such as the Journal of Development Economics, The Lancet, World Development, Economics of Education Review, Journal of Economic Behavior and Organisation, the British Education Research Journal, Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Applied Economics, Journal of Development Studies, Labour Economics, Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Review of Development Economics, and others, as well as book chapters and working papers. She has co-authored a book on the political economy of education and co-edited a volume on South African economic policy under democracy.

Based on her research, she writes publicly accessible, less technical, articles and opinion editorials for leading national newspapers and magazines, in order to influence policy-thinking. She has written recently in the New York Times, Hindustan Times, Indian Express, The Hindu, and Times of India, as well as for India Today, the Observer Research Foundation and the Education World magazines.
Teaching Summary

  •        MA in Education and International Development suite of Masters courses, specifically: 
    • MA in Economics, Education and Development 
    • MA in Gender, Education and Development
    • MA in Planning, Education and Development 
    • MA in Learning, Education and Development.      
  •       Economics of Education module on the MA in Education Economics
  •       Supervision of MA theses 
  •       Supervision of the Doctoral theses 
  •       Internal and External Examiner for PhD and DPhil theses at UCL, University of Warwick, LSE, and the University of Oxford 

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