In light of contemporary and emerging challenges such as climate change, violent and hateful ideologies, conflicts and risks of global pandemics, education must teach young people the knowledge, skills, values and attitudes to live cooperatively, be flexible, think critically, respect diversity, care for the environment, and be actively involved in finding solutions, both locally and globally.
Transformative education – as enshrined in Target 4.7 of Sustainable Development Goal 4 – is critical in supporting individuals to develop these competencies. Transformative education involves teaching and learning that motivates and empowers learners to make informed decisions and actions at the individual, community and global levels. With a focus on sustainability, global citizenship, health and well-being for all, transformative education implies ensuring that curriculum, pedagogy, learning materials, schools and learning environments are meaningful for the social, political, economic, cultural and environmental contexts.
To better understand concrete progress in transformative education, UNESCO and the Asia Pacific Centre of Education for International Understanding (APCEIU) co-organized the 5th UNESCO Forum on Transformative Education for Sustainable Development, Global Citizenship, Health and Well-being (29 November – 1 December 2021).
The conference enabled a productive dialogue among a diverse range of actors from the fields of education for sustainable development (ESD), global citizenship education (GCED), education for health and wellbeing under the broader “banner” of transformative education.