SR b7

Do programmes outside the formal education system improve children’s literacy in developing countries?

For a majority of children globally, the substantial increase in access to primary schooling has not led to a significant improvement in learning. To address this learning gap, numerous are being implemented outside the formal education system to improve children’s literacy. 

A recent 3ie-funded systematic review examined the effectiveness of that are aimed at parents, families and communities for improving children’s literacy in low- and middle-income countries. The reviewers assessed the effectiveness of educational television, interventions that show parents how to support their children’s readiness for school, and interventions that use a tutoring approach involving peers or adult community members. 

This review findings from 13 quantitative studies, which examined interventions implemented in Armenia, Bangladesh, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, India, Indonesia, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Turkey and Yemen.

Main findings: 

  • Educational television, when viewed three to five days a week over four months, had a positive effect on the literacy of children of pre-primary school age.
  • Interventions that showed parents how to develop their child’s readiness for school were found not to be effective overall.
  • There is no rigorous evidence available on the effectiveness of several kinds of supplementary interventions, such as community libraries, reading clubs, local , electronic readers and laptops intended for use outside school, religious instruction, and community . 

SR18 life-cycle WASH

Using a life-cycle approach to target WASH policies and programmes in South Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa

Systematic review Brief 3ie 2018
The brief summarises a systematic review on the effectiveness of two approaches to targeting populations in programmes and policies to reduce barriers to accessing WASH services and strategies during the MDGs.


Creating active labour markets: how to improve employment outcomes for young women and men

Systematic review Brief 3ie 2017
This brief is based on a systematic review which examines the effects of active labour market programmes for youth, including training and skills development, entrepreneurship promotion, employment services and subsidised employment.


Community-based health insurance: how to promote effective and equitable coverage?

Systematic review Brief 3ie 2017
The brief is based on a systematic review examining the demand and supply factors that affect uptake and renewal of community-based voluntary health insurance schemes in L&MICs.


Access to health: How to reduce child and maternal mortality?

Systematic review Brief 3ie 2010
Systematic reviews show that access to community-based health services reduces neonatal mortality and still births, but t he effect on maternal mortality is harder to detect.

SR b2

Focus on Female Genital Mutilation

Systematic review Brief 3ie 2013
Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting (FGM/C) has negative health consequences for women, ranging from pain, bleeding, and shock due to chronic infections. Around 140 million girls and women live with the risks caused by FGM/C, of which 92 million girls and women are in Africa.