Implementation science

Leveraging existing research on what policies work to understand how they should be implemented in practice, and at a scale necessary for transformative outcomes

There is an urgent need to get all children learning. Finding out what works through controlled studies has been a critical first step. Now, the challenge is implementation: putting effective approaches into practice, when theory meets all the messiness of politics, bureaucracy, varying contexts, varying delivery models, differing incentives, and the shift from small trials to large-scale practice. Finding out how to put evidence-based ideas into widespread practice, all the way into millions of individual classrooms, is the next frontier.

We will generate evidence about effective implementation of education reforms by working alongside governments undertaking such reforms in low- and middle-income countries. In an unprecedented example of undertaking world-leading research and real-world reform simultaneously, we will be studying how to implement education reforms at scale while supporting governments in real time to do it. The work will directly affect up to 3 million children, and reach up to 17 million more through its influence.

This effort will generate evidence about the ingredients of successful implementation, and catalyse a new academic focus on implementation science within education, while concurrently having real-world impact.

The three pillars of the What Works Hub for Global Education

Evidence translation

We are making the best existing evidence clear and available to governments and other implementers so they can use it effectively, through synthesising, curating and translating evidence on improving foundational learning.

Evidence use

We are supporting evidence generation and use by governments for policy design and implementation in a range of ways, including evidence labs embedded within governments, networks, and support for individuals and institutions to gather and use evidence​.

Implementation science

By working alongside governments as they put in place reforms, we will generate evidence about the ingredients of successful implementation. This effort will catalyse a new focus on implementation science within education, concurrently having real-world impact.