Tuesday 23 May 2017 -
16:15 to 17:30

Watch this short summary video of the session


Listen to the entire session through the audio podcast.


This session will look at the recent research into higher education for Syrian refugees in Jordan, Turkey and Lebanon.  

The research was commissioned by the British Council in partnership with UNHCR, and provides a comprehensive picture of Syrian youths’ perceptions of education opportunities that are available to them in those countries. It uses a qualitative methodology providing insights into the barriers and social roles that education plays in the lives of young people who have now been outside their own system for a number of years.  It begins with an overview of Syrian higher education – which once provided broad access to university education, although the system was deeply flawed. It considers the social and gender barriers which students experience in trying to further their studies and it specifically focusses on issues that impact on the accessibility, availability, acceptability and adaptability of the higher education that is currently on offer for Syrians in Jordan, Turkey and Lebanon.

The research will be of interest both to universities wanting to engage with the issue of Syrian refugees, and to humanitarian players working in the region and in this specific field. The report concludes with lessons learnt and makes specific recommendations for the university sector and for other actors working in the field.


  • Professor Jo Beall, Director - Education and Society, British Council, UK (Chair)
  • Dr Kathleen Fincham, Senior Lecturer, St Mary's University, UK  
  • Vick Ikobwa, Education Offficer, UNHCR, Jordan
  • Dr Carsten Walbiner, Programme Director – HOPES, German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD), Germany
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