Key findings from analyses on the relationship between education and peace

Existing research indicates that education has a positive correlation with peace and development, and a negative correlation with conflict; indeed, the detrimental effects of conflicts and protracted crises on education are well documented. However, though gaining attention in the 2000s, the nuances of the relationship between education and more peaceful societies remain underexplored, providing only a partial picture for governments and donors when making critical investment decisions.

This report, a collaboration between the Institute for Economics & Peace (IEP) and the Global Partnership for Education (GPE), shares some of the high-level findings from comprehensive research undertaken by IEP to better understand the relationships between education and levels of peacefulness. The research involved regression analyses between education outcomes (as measured by six key indicators) and both negative peace (as measured by the Global Peace Index, or GPI) and positive peace (as measured by the Positive Peace Index, or PPI).

The IEP analyses consistently showed correlation between education and peace across most indicators; that is, in most instances, better education outcomes coincided with fewer conflicts and higher levels of peace. While the results of this exploratory study cannot be interpreted causally, they do offer a number of notable correlations that associate better education outcomes with more peaceful and stable societies.