From Billions to Trillions: Investing in the Next Generation

Every year, GBC-Education holds its annual breakfast event around the IMF / World Bank Meetings. This year’s event, From Billions to Trillions: Investing in the Next Generation, focused on education financing and the potential for global education bonds to transform how investors approach Sustainable Development Goal 4 – quality education for all.

Date: April 11, 2019

Location: Washington, D.C.

Event Overview:

In order to generate the finance necessary to achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), major international financial institutions concluded that the global community must move the discussion from “billions” in development assistance to “trillions” in investments including public and private, national and global – in both capital and capacity. The vision to move from “billions to trillions” is particularly relevant for global education. To reach SDG 4 – equitable and inclusive quality education for all – the collective global investment in learning must increase from $1.2 trillion to nearly $3 trillion by 2030 in low- and lower-middle-income countries.

To address the challenge of financing SDG 4, the Global Business Coalition for Education (GBC-Education) will host its annual high-level breakfast eventon April 11, 2019 during the IMF-World Bank Spring Meetings. The event will focus on how the business investment community could mobilize additional funds for education through the issuing of global learning bonds.

The climate sector has benefited from similar bond financing, with the World Bank originally issuing $10 billion in “green bonds” to fund climate projects throughout the world. Today, green bond issuance has reached more than $250 billion globally.

With the new International Finance Facility for Education (IFFEd) slated to launch later in 2019 and greater engagement of the World Bank and regional development banks on education finance , there is an opportunity to work with the private sector to raise the profile of global education and harness new finance to invest in the skills and talents of the next generation.

From Billions to Trillions: Investing in the Next Generation will bring together governments, foundations, multilateral development banks, investment funds, and other actors to discuss the feasibility and next steps in issuing bonds and mobilizing private finance for public sector investment.


Gordon Brown

UN Special Envoy

for Global Education


Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala

Chair, GAVI

Former Minister of Finance, Nigeria


Hiro Mizuno

Executive Managing Director, Japanese Government Pension Investment Fund


Mark Haefele

Global Chief Investment Officer, UBS Wealth Management


Sir Ronald Cohen

Chairman of the Global Steering Group for Impact Investment and The Portland Trust


Liesbet Steer

Director, The Education Commission