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Bertha Centre for Social Innovation & Entrepreneurship

Bertha Centre

Education Innovation


Our Education Initiative is working to improve education outcomes in low-income communities from ‘cradle to career’. The initiative collaborates with global partner Results 4 Development, local research institutes, funders and practitioners to identify sustainable and innovative models.

The goal is to advance the education sector in Africa by sharing knowledge and supporting collective action.

Our Work


We have identified and come to understand what works through compiling over 130 case studies demonstrating innovative program design, successful scaling, robust monitoring and evaluation, cost efficiency and systemic collaboration.

The initiative knows the community of education change makers and links these practitioners, NGOs, government officials and funders in order to share knowledge, ignite and advance innovative thinking and facilitate collective impact.

Examples of focus areas include: Early Childhood Development, Literacy & Numeracy, Teacher Development, Inclusive and Thriving School Communities, Curriculum Development, Productive Partnerships with Government, Investigating Market-based Solutions and Narrowing the Gap Between Education and Employment.

In 2015, the initiative will publish its, and South Africa's first Education Innovator's Review.


The first South African Education Innovator’s Review

This Review is a showcase of the outstanding innovations the Bertha Education Innovation Initiative has uncovered in the South African education space.

This year, upon reflection of our work over the last three years, we were inspired to compile the first South African Education Innovator’s Review, in partnership with the Results for Development Institute’s Center for Education Innovations.

Through this Review we want to celebrate a selection of the innovations we have uncovered. These innovations have proven impact, and have scaled to increase the reach of this impact. We spent time with the implementers to move beyond a clinical analysis, to extract and understand their practical learnings gathered through implementation, and to identify what works and why.

The education ecosystem is reflected in the chapters of this Review, with the learner at the centre, surrounded by the vital stakeholders needed for successful systems change: teachers, parents and caregivers, school leadership, Government and the private sector. Along with the in-depth look at specific programmes, each chapter features a local expert’s opinion, outlining the current state of – and challenges in – the particular field, and highlighting the need for innovation and the likely components of a viable solution. We have also highlighted some innovations to watch, which are meeting a need in this ecosystem through sustainable and thoughtful implementation.

This Review shines a spotlight on the sometimes under-recognised role that frontline actors can play in systemic change in education, and the hope that lies in the all-too-often untold narrative of their positive work.

We hope that you are inspired to embark on your own journey to support education in our country.

Please click here to download your free copy.

Our Partners

The initiative partners with Results for Development Institute (R4D) and Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab. 


Join and follow our journey

The initiative can be reached via its direct email address, which is: