Media Coverage
January 22, 2021

BBC News reports on Sesame Workshop using Rohingya muppets to help deliver educational and developmental messaging to refugee children in Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh. IPA worked with Sesame Workshop on research to inform the design of the two muppets, Aziz and Noor, and develop educational content that would resonate with kids and families in the world's largest refugee camp.

Media Coverage
January 05, 2021

NBC News reported from Sesame Street and from the world's largest refugee camp in Bangladesh on IPA's work with Sesame Workshop. Researchers helped develop two new muppets to speak to Rohingya refugee children and facilitate early childhood development efforts in the camp. Watch the story, which aired on the Today Show below, or read the text version from the button at the bottom.

Media Coverage
January 05, 2021

Variety covers IPA's work with Sesame Workshop designing Rohingya muppets to help refugee children with their cognitive and emotional development, with a focus on skills to respond to trauma.

Media Coverage
December 28, 2020

The New York Times reports on IPA's work with Sesame Workshop in Bangaldesh, creating Noor and Aziz, two new Rohingya muppets designed around the needs of children in the world's largest refugee camp.

Media Coverage
November 28, 2020

Researchers Elisabetta Aurino and Sharon Wolf write in The Conversation about the impact of food insecurity on early child development. Referencing their long term research with Edward Tsinigo and IPA Ghana, which shows how hunger is associated with worse cognitive performance years later, they explain the long term consequences of hunger during the COVID crisis for children around the world.


Mental health graphic
October 19, 2020

By Juan Manuel Hernández-Agramonte, Guisselle Alpizar, María Loreto Biehl, Laura Ochoa Foschini, Olga Namen, Emma Näslund-Hadley, and Brunilda Peña de Osorio 1

Editor's note: This is a cross-post of a blog that originally appeared on IDB's blog page in English and Spanish.

With the sudden halt to face-to-face education, parents across the world juggle distance and hybrid education models. In addition to being parents and often full-time employees, overnight they suddenly also became full-time educators and classroom managers. The additional burden on parents comes at the cost...

Press Release
September 29, 2020

Imperial College London announces a new study with IPA-Ghana and Dr Elisabetta Aurino, looking at how the COVID-19 pandemic and school closures have affected children's learning, health, and food security.

Education at home
September 03, 2020

By Luciana Debenedetti, Shahana Hirji, Samuel Kembou Nzale, Cyrille Gnalega, and Ben Anderson Koffi

Despite Côte d’Ivoire’s initial success in maintaining a relatively flat case count, COVID-19 cases have quintupled over the last two months, mostly in the Greater Abidjan area. Côte d’Ivoire is also in the middle of its rainy season and landslides and floods are affecting areas that were already exposed to COVID-19, further intensifying the crisis. These twin weather and health challenges stand to further imperil economic recovery efforts, for which policymakers need timely and...

Approximately 50% children.png
August 25, 2020

By Luciana Debenedetti, Shahana Hirji, Marius Ogoukonle Chabi, and Tessa Swigart 

In Burkina Faso, the COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated an already deteriorating security situation in the country. In a country of some 20 million people, more than 921,000 people have been uprooted from their homes, and almost three million people are in need of humanitarian assistance. Understanding the immediate effects of the crisis on people’s lives is critical for policymakers to plan for economic assistance and recovery.

IPA has developed the RECOVR survey to better understand such...

Proportion of households, time on education by income
August 19, 2020

By Cynthia Bosumtwi-Sam and Sarah Kabay

Ghana closed its schools on March 15, 2020, as part of the country’s lockdown to address the COVID-19 pandemic. When schools reopen, they cannot simply resume business as usual. Though the Ghanaian education system and education systems around the world are facing significant challenges, research and evidence can offer some guidance on how to address them. In this blog, we use insights from IPA’s recent RECOVR survey and the TCAI and STARS research projects to provide a few suggestions for how to approach reopening schools in Ghana. 

Photo of classroom in Uganda taken during Elevate project.
August 14, 2020


What kinds of interventions could help improve schools’ and communities’ response to the coronavirus pandemic?

Research during the Ebola epidemic found that a community monitoring intervention in Sierra Leone was able to save lives when the epidemic hit, apparently through building confidence and trust in government health clinics. People were more likely to overcome fear and stigma and report to clinics for testing and treatment, which lowered death rates.

Could a similar intervention be useful for the education sector in the context of the coronavirus pandemic?

Wellbeing of Children during COVID-19
August 12, 2020

By Juan M. Hernández-Agramonte (IPA), Claudia Paola Lisboa Vásquez (OSEE, Minedu), Carolina Méndez (IDB), Olga Namen (IPA), Emma Näslund-Hadley (IDB), and Luciana Velarde (OSEE, Minedu)

Editor's note: This is a cross-post of a blog that originally appeared on IDB's blog page (in Spanish).

Following school and workplace closures and layoffs throughout the world, mental health experts caution that lengthy shelter-in-place orders may have severe effects on our socioemotional wellbeing. With all of us separated from friends, everyday interactions, routines, and structures,...

Food security
July 10, 2020

By Charles Amoatey, Elliott Collins, and Madeleen Husselman

In March, Ghana, like much of the world, adopted social distancing measures to slow the spread of COVID-19. Measures included the closings of schools and universities, suspension of gatherings of over 25 people, and partial lockdowns in major urban areas. 

So far, like most West African countries, Ghana has avoided the worst of the virus’s health toll. However, in low- and middle-income countries like Ghana, the pandemic’s socio-economic consequences may exceed the immediate health ones and even cost more lives....

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June 29, 2020


By Sarah Kabay, Olga Namen, and Stephanie Wu

In response to the coronavirus pandemic, over 188 countries instituted country-wide school closures. As a result, countless education systems and educators are trying to find alternatives to the classroom. At IPA, we support and partner with several Ministries of Education and have been looking for research and evidence that could help inform our partners during these challenges, the scope of which nobody's ever encountered before.

We started by asking ourselves, what exactly are we looking for? “Distance learning” is one of...

Media Coverage
June 25, 2020

Burkina Faso's L'Economiste Du Faso profiles an IPA study in Côte d’Ivoire with Guilherme Lichand and Sharon Wolf on using SMS messages to improve outcomes in education.