Learning for All Initiative

Children raising their hands in a classroom.
Photo Credit: Shutterstock
J-PAL's Learning for All Initiative (LAI) supports randomized evaluations and scale-focused projects that aim to improve student learning outcomes by addressing foundational literacy and numeracy, pedagogy, holistic skills, and barriers to equity and inclusion, particularly for girls.

Pre-pandemic, more than half of children in low- and middle-income countries were unable to read a simple story by age 10. In the poorest countries, this figure was as high as 80 percent. School closures, which affected over one billion children during the pandemic, have exacerbated low learning and inequity in education systems. In response to the current crisis in education and increasing demand for actionable evidence, LAI will fund randomized evaluations (full and pilot evaluations and travel/proposal development grants) and scale projects to improve children’s foundational learning, especially related to literacy, numeracy, and breadth of skills. Additional focus areas include girls’ education, the intersections of climate and education, and the long-term economic and health impacts of education interventions.

LAI aims to improve global learning outcomes by identifying the next generation of promising evidence-based approaches that can be tested, replicated, and adapted by policymakers to their local contexts. In addition to evaluating innovations, the Initiative also funds evidence-based interventions at a larger scale and in new contexts to better understand their generalizability, mechanisms of change, and pathways to scale.

Key Facts

J-PAL Global
  • Research RFP: Open
J-PAL affiliates, post-doctoral fellows, invited researchers, a J-PAL or IPA office working in collaboration with a J-PAL affiliate or invited researcher, or an eligible African Scholar. See RFP materials for full eligibility requirements.

Initiative Staff

Anushka Bansal - Initiative Manager, Senior Policy Associate, J-PAL Global

Madeline Brancel - Policy Manager, J-PAL Global

Nicah Santos - Senior Policy Associate, J-PAL Global

Dakota Wyne - Grant Manager, Senior Finance and Operations Associate, J-PAL Global

Demitria Wack - Initiative Manager, Senior Policy Associate, J-PAL Global 

Jessica Williams - Policy Associate, J-PAL Global


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For Researchers

Request for Proposals

LAI's third funding round will open on April 17, 2024. Please visit our RFP page for full information and instructions on how to apply for future rounds. 

On Scaling

Guide to Path-to-Scale Awards

How does LAI think about "scaling"? What are the three types of awards in this category? Read this new resource on how to understand and propose these types of projects in the LAI RFP. 

Foundations of Learning Initiative

J-PAL’s Foundations of Learning (FoL) Initiative invites teams of economists and cognitive psychologists to apply for funds to develop and test innovative solutions to improve learning.  To be eligible for FOL funds, teams must include at least one economist and at least one cognitive psychologist with the ultimate aim of improving children’s learning. At least one of the team’s PIs must be a J-PAL affiliate or invited researcher and eligible for J-PAL funding. FOL funds can be used for research conducted in an LMIC or for small-scale lab work, often done by psychologists in a controlled setting, in an HIC as long as there are tangible plans to expand this work elsewhere to “in-the-field” randomized evaluations in an LMIC.


Cultivating Curiosity in Science Education: Lessons from a Teacher Training Program

Location: Sant Kabir Nagar in the state of Uttar Pradesh

Providing Remote Education to Afghan Girls

Location: Kandahar, Mazar, Jalabad, and Kabul

Shaping Minds: The Transformative Effects of Theater-Based Learning

Location: Champawat in the state of Uttarakhand

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