The Future of Education in Latin America and the Caribbean


Event Summary This event has passed.

In the past two decades, Latin America and the Caribbean has reached a turning point in its education performance. While coverage, particularly at the primary and secondary levels, has expanded significantly, the challenges of low education quality and relevance remain considerable. Although the region is rich in human capital, the lack of adequate education and skills training means that this resource remains largely underdeveloped. The economic and social costs of these learning deficits are felt in myriad ways and compound over time, leading to low productivity and growth in the region.

Throughout its history, the United States has long supported human capital development in Latin America and the Caribbean—both through foreign assistance via the US Agency for International Development (USAID) and other government programs, as well as through private sector and non-profit initiatives. The Dialogue is pleased to host a presentation and series of discussions considering what these efforts might look like going forward. What models of engagement and investment exist for US-based actors? What opportunities do education and skills development offer for promoting US foreign policy interests?

Follow this event on Twitter at #FutureOfLACEducation and @PrealEd.

Introductory Remarks

Opening Keynote

Presentation: The Future of Education in Latin America & the Caribbean: Possibilities for United States Investment and Engagement


  • Ariel Fiszbein, Director, Education Program, Inter-American Dialogue (@arielfiszbein)


  • Sarah Stanton, Program Associate, Education Program, Inter-American Dialogue

Panel I: U.S. Investment in Skills Development in Latin America & the Caribbean


  • Susan Bell, Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary, Bureau of Western Hemisphere, Department of State
  • Heather Ward, Associate Director, Center for Internationalization and Global Engagement, American Council on Education (@hh_ward)
  • Nichole Johnson, Head of Program Development, Private Sector and Government, Institute of International Education (@NicholeMJ)
  • Michael Lisman, Acting Education Team Leader, Bureau for Latin America and the Caribbean, USAID (@miguellisman)


  • Ariel Fiszbein, Director, Education Program, Inter-American Dialogue

Panel II: Maximizing Impact in the Region: Possibilities for Shared Engagement


  • Roberta Jacobson, Former US Ambassador to Mexico (@Jacobson_RS)
  • Luis Miguel Castilla, Former Peruvian Ambassador to the US, Former Minister of Economy and Finance, Peru


  • Michael Shifter, President, Inter-American Dialogue