The RISE Podcast: Manos Antoninis on the First GEM Spotlight Series Report on Africa

Manos Antoninis talks about the first report in the Spotlight Series, a new initiative by the GEM Report and its partners to shine a spotlight on primary completion and the state of foundational learning in Africa.


Image of Manos Antoninis

Manos Antoninis

Global Education Monitoring (GEM) Report

Image of Jason Silberstein

Jason Silberstein

RISE Directorate

Blavatnik School of Government, University of Oxford

In the latest episode of the RISE Podcast, the Director of UNESCO's Global Education Monitoring (GEM) Report, Manos Antoninis, talks to RISE Research Fellow Jason Silberstein about the first report in the Spotlight Series.  The Spotlight is a new initiative by the GEM Report and its partners to shine a spotlight on primary completion and the state of foundational learning in Africa. They discuss the report’s original research and clear recommendations for how to improve learning, with a focus on what the Spotlight has to say about politics, measurement, supporting teachers, and balancing investment in student-level inputs with systems-level reform.


Guest biographies

Manos Antoninis

Manos Antoninis is the Director of the Global Education Monitoring (GEM) Report since 2017. He was previously responsible for the monitoring section of the report. He coordinated the financing gap estimates for the 2030 education targets, the projections on the achievement of universal primary and secondary education completion, and the World Inequality Database on Education. He has been representing the report team in the Technical Cooperation Group on SDG 4 indicators, which he is currently co-chairing.  

Prior to joining the team he worked for 10 years on public finance, monitoring and evaluation projects in education including: a public expenditure tracking and service delivery survey of secondary education provision in Bangladesh; the evaluation of a basic education project in the western provinces of China; the mid-term evaluation of the Education For All Fast Track Initiative; the annual reporting of progress in the implementation of the Second Primary Education Development Project in Bangladesh; a basic education capacity building programme in six states in Nigeria; the evaluation of an in-service, cluster-based teacher training programme in Pakistan; and the country study of the Out of School Children Global Initiative in Indonesia. He holds a DPhil in Economics for a study of technical education and the labour market in Egypt, completed at the Centre for the Study of African Economies of the University of Oxford.

Jason Silberstein

Jason Silberstein is a Research Fellow for RISE at the Blavatnik School of Government. His research explores the relationship between schools and the communities they serve.

Before joining RISE, he worked as a consultant to the governments of Ethiopia and Ghana on reforms aimed at strengthening accountability in their education systems, and spent 18 months as a policy advisor in the Myanmar Ministry of Education. His understanding of international development was shaped by 3 years at Seva Mandir, a grassroots nonprofit in India. His first job was as a secondary school English literature teacher. Jason holds a Masters in Public Administration in International Development (MPA/ID) from the Harvard Kennedy School. 


RISE is funded by the UK’s Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office; Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade; and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. The Programme is implemented through a partnership between Oxford Policy Management and the Blavatnik School of Government at the University of Oxford. The Blavatnik School of Government at the University of Oxford supports the production of the RISE Podcast.

Producers: Joseph Bullough and Katie Cooper

Audio Editing: James Morris

RISE blog posts and podcasts reflect the views of the authors and do not necessarily represent the views of the organisation or our funders.