Abstract for: The Long-Term Effects of the COVID Pandemic on Human Capital

Education is central to achieving the World Bank Group's (WBG) goals: it is a reliable route out of poverty because it has large and consistent returns to income for individuals and because it can drive economic growth. The WBG and the broader education development community are increasingly shifting focus to learning outcomes. To understand the impact of the COVID pandemic on education, a system dynamics model was used is to complement the WGB's diagnostics work and international experience to provide a dynamic framework to help build a shared understanding on the critical elements required to achieve learning at early grade and at the end of primary, highlight the main interdependencies, and identify how they might reinforce or undermine one another. This tool is used to help inform some of the critical elements of a clear theory of change on how it can be reached. This simulation model is designed to generate a structured conversation among policymakers, World Bank team members, and development partners regarding the country's initial conditions, possible parameter values, and how those different assumptions interact as they generate distinct trajectories of the system's performance. These results and conversations should help strengthen the narrative on how countries can accelerate learning, and also provide feedback on how our theoretical framework can be improved.