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Dr Gari Donn


Education, Community and Society (ECS)


Tel: +44 (0)131 651 6310


St John's Land


  • BSc (Hons) London University: Politics, Philosophy, Sociology
  • MSc Warwick University: Sociological Theory
  • PhD Strathclyde University: Nuclear Energy Policy Making
  • PGCE (Tertiary Education) Birmingham University

Having studied Sociology, Politics and Philosophy at London University, I undertook a one year PGCE qualification at Birmingham University for teaching in tertiary institutions. Thereafter I taught for two years in an FE college in Wolverhampton before returning to academic study, to read for an MSc in Sociological Theory at Warwick University. I then moved to Nottingham, where I taught Sociology of Education on the BEd degree and then to London where I lectured on Sociology and Politics. My PhD (Strathclyde University) emerged out of interests developed at this time: it focused upon the social and political context of rationales for Nuclear Energy Policy Making.

At Edinburgh University as Convenor of the MSc in Education, I have taught BSc (hons) and MSc programmes in the field of the Sociology of Education and International Education. In 2002-2005 I was seconded to the Higher Education desk of the Commonwealth Secretariat where I worked with Ministers of Education throughout the Commonwealth. On return to Edinburgh University and no longer Convenor, I continue to teach on the MSc and PhD programmes.

I have consultancies with a number Ministries, NGOs and individual clients, all in the field of international education.

I am active in the United Nations Association where, in Edinburgh, I am Convenor and represent Scotland on the UNA UK Board of Governors. I have been awarded Consular Status as Convenor of UNA Scotland. I am also on the UNESCO Scotland Committee and the Education Sub-Committee.

Principal interests

  • Education policy making processes in an international context
  • Education in difficulty circumstances and in post-conflict reconstruction
  • Higher Education institutional development and curriculum reform
  • Higher Education in the Gulf Arab States
  • Education in Sub-Saharan Africa

I am happy to supervise research under the headings above. I currently supervise doctoral students in the following areas:

  • Education Policy in Pakistan
  • PEPFAR and Policy Borrowing for HIV/AIDS in Uganda
  • INGOs, NGOs and Education in Zambia
  • Quality of Basic Education in post-Soviet Context
  • Concept of Tolerance in Islamic Curriculum in Oman
  • Education in Post Conflict in Rwanda
  • Quality Assurance Structures - Policy Borrowing in Oman
  • English Language Curriculum in Chinese Primary Schools
  • Gender Mainstreaming: South Africa as a policy entrepreneur
  • Education Policy in Japan
  • Early Childhood Education in Nigeria

Research supervision

Projects supervised by Dr Gari Donn

Current and recent research

I am currently involved in the following academic research:

  • Higher Education in the Gulf: Policy Borrowing and Institutional Development
  • International Education Policy: International Targets and Goals and National Policy Space
  • Privatisation of Education in Broader Middle East Countries
  • Career Guidance as a key to knowledge-based societies


Publications list for Dr Gari Donn

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