Centre for Effective Learning Environments (CELE)

CELE and EIB study investments in school buildings


The OECD Centre for Effective Learning Environments (CELE) and the European Investment Bank launch a joint project on strategic investment planning for educational infrastructure.


As governments and development banks are continuing to make significant investments in learning environments,* CELE and the European Investment Bank are renewing their co-operation through a new project that explores how countries can plan for and evaluate their educational infrastructure needs.


The purpose of the study is to assist national, regional and local authorities to improve the process by which decisions are made relating to large-scale investments in new and existing school building stock. These decisions are often based on a complex interplay of physical, cultural and economic factors such as the educational needs of the community or region, cost-benefit analysis, demographic profiles and forecasts, and age, condition and nature of existing building stock. In order to optimise the investment in and use of educational facilities, there should be a strategic, economic rationale behind the decisions. Two fundamental issues shape investment decisions:

  • Why are the facilities needed?
  • Is there a stronger case for rehabilitating existing facilities or for building new ones?


The study will be conducted in three phases:

  • Phase 1: Assessment of current practices and identification of best practices. This will involve gathering information on investment strategies in countries or regions/municipalities. Experts will then meet to draft a conceptual framework for implementing a strategic approach to educational facilities’ investment.
  • Phase 2: Analysis. This phase will involve visits to a small number of countries, the development of an evaluation methodology and a report.
  • Phase 3: Dissemination of results. In this phase, results from this study will be shared with other countries and development banks in an international forum.


Initial preparation for this project has commenced, and the first meeting of experts and country visits will take place in 2009.


For more information, contact Hannah.vonAhlefeld@oecd.org.


*See PEB Exchange articles “Campania, Italy, Launches Educational Quality Project”, June 2008, and “Modernising Portugal’s Secondary Schools”, February 2007.


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