RISE Annual Conference 2023


General information

We invite you to express your interest in attending the 2023 Research on Improving Systems of Education (RISE) Programme Annual Conference. Attendees can join the proceedings in Oxford (UK) or virtually.

The RISE Conference will cover a range of themes under the broad umbrella of education systems thinking. 

Follow the event on social media: #RISEConf2023

Registration information

The RISE Annual Conference 2023 will be held at the Blavatnik School of Government, University of Oxford, UK from 21-22 September 2023. Attendees can also join the proceedings virtually.

Spaces are limited at the venues, so please register your interest in attending the event as soon as possible. Confirmation of places will be sent out in mid-August.


Register your interest in attending

Conference themes and call for papers

The 2023 RISE Conference will cover a range of themes under the broad umbrella of education systems thinking. The Call for Papers has now closed and authors of accepted papers will be notified by 7 July 2023.

Call for Papers

The Call for Papers has now closed for the 2023 Conference.

While the RISE Programme is coming to a close, we are pleased to announce that the RISE conference will continue this September at the Blavatnik School of Government, in Oxford, UK. We invite you to submit a paper for the 2023 RISE Annual Conference.

The 2023 RISE Conference will cover a range of themes under the broad umbrella of education systems research. Submissions are invited in any area of research relating to education systems in low-middle-income countries, including all themes from past RISE Conferences. 


Full list of previous RISE Conference themes


RISE is keen to solicit academic papers presenting original research on these topics from across the social science disciplines/methodologies. We also welcome submissions based on evidence constituting experiential reflections that will directly inform the discussion of these topics.

Full papers should be submitted by Friday, 26 May 2023 via the submission form on the RISE website. Abstracts will be considered for inclusion. Authors of accepted papers will be notified no later than 7 July 2023.


Download the "Call for Papers" (PDF)


RISE Annual Conference Themes (2016-2022)

  • Accountability versus autonomy (e.g., What are the merits and demerits of top-down, highstakes accountability schemes in the education sector, and how do these schemes compare to initiatives that grant agents greater autonomy?)
  • Alternative Modalities of Provision (e.g., What role, if any, should non-state actors play in school finance and/or management? Can private schools, or public-private partnerships, be an effective alternative to conventional state schools, and if so, how should they be designed, governed, or regulated?)
  • Curriculum (e.g., Is teaching taking place at the right level? What is being taught in classrooms? Which curricula and teaching methods are proving in/effective?)
  • Demand for Education (e.g., What are stakeholders demanding from education systems? Can stakeholders provide demand-side accountability that drives up education quality?)
  • Distributed authority (e.g., Can education systems successfully distribute authority? What are the constraints, political or administrative, that undermine such attempts?)
  • Financing and Resources (e.g., Do schools lack access to credit and/or support services? What changes occur when any such constraints are relaxed? How are schools funded by government, parents, and communities?)
  • Generalisability (e.g., Papers documenting heterogeneity (or homogeneity) based on careful reviews of different interventions, replications of the same intervention; methodological papers exploring how best to answer the perennial ‘what works’ question)
  • Governance (e.g., How do system features such as the degree of school autonomy and stakeholder engagement affect teacher behaviour, and learning outcomes?)
  • Information and Assessment (e.g., What changes occur when key actors in the system—civil servants, principals, teachers, parents—are given better information about learning outcomes? What is measured, how well, and how is this information used?)
  • Innovation (e.g., Are education systems generating, evaluating, and scaling system-wide innovations in learning, and if not, why not?)
  • Instructional (in)coherence (e.g., In what ways and why is classroom instruction so often incoherent for learning? What additional challenges have been raised by the COVID-19 pandemic?)
  • Learning Inequalities and Social Mobility (e.g., How should we measure learning to draw meaningful comparisons across groups and countries, and over time? Where do learning inequalities exist, and why? How, and to what extent, can more equitable learning contribute to better life outcomes?)
  • Long-term trajectories of change (e.g., historical comparative education system performance, the impact of long-term interventions, or results from long-term follow-ups)
  • Management (e.g., Can management reforms, at any level of the system, realign relationships to be more coherent for learning?)
  • Positive/negative deviance and outliers (e.g., What do positive deviants do differently from negative deviants? Where, when, and why do strategies and behaviours cross-pollinate or get suppressed?)
  • Teachers (e.g., How can the education system support individuals to become effective teachers and ensure that the best teachers remain in the schools that need them? How are teachers recruited, and how are they trained and supported?)
  • The Political Economy of Reform (e.g., What are the key political obstacles to adopting learning- oriented education reforms, and how have some systems overcome them? What problems of implementation arise during piloting and at scale, and how can these challenges be tackled?)


  • Is there a minimum or maximum word count for submissions?
    • No, we do not have a word limit on submissions. 
  • What file format do you accept and what is the size limit?
    • We accept the following file formats: .txt, .pdf, .doc, .docx, .zip.
    • The file upload size limit is 32mb.
    • Only one file can be uploaded.
  • Can I submit multiple papers?
    • Yes, you can submit multiple papers, but this must be done individually.
  • Can I submit an abstract instead of a full paper?
    • Yes, you can submit an abstract but the expectation would be that a paper in 'working paper' condition will be ready in time for the conference.