January 22, 2014

Gordon Brown warns world leaders of global unrest over lack of education

Ewan Watt

Online Editor, Theirworld

A lack of education and opportunity for young people will lead to an outbreak of unrest and protest across the globe, Gordon Brown will warn world leaders.

Half of the world's population have not completed secondary education and new official figures out next week will reveal 500million of today's school-age girls will be forced to leave school early because of poverty. 

Mr Brown, the former UK prime minister and a UN Special Envoy for Global Education, will tell the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, on January 23 that this failure to act will create the conditions for waves of social unrest and political instability from frustrated and increasingly angry young people on all continents. 

He will say: "It is the sheer gap between the promise of globalisation and the reality young people experience every day that is creating not just a restlessness among youth who feel they have no future but also making their rebelliousness a new pressure point for even wider change.

 "Through mobiles and the internet they will become increasingly aware that they are poor and uneducated. And it is not because of who they are and what skills they have or how hard they work but because of where they are and who they are born to. 

"Young people in the developing world will no longer be prepared to accept a world where your birth determines your fate, your rights are what others ascribe to you and opportunities are what your father or grandfather decided you have."

Mr Brown will say it is "heartbreaking" that in 2014 there are 57million girls and boys across the world who will never even get a first day at primary school. 

And he will add: "Even in the year 2030, one billion men and women, denied a decent education, will be competing as part of a global labour force with no basic employment skills."

Picture: SLN Photography

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