The WISE Prize for Education

WISE Prize for Education


Ms Ann Cotton, Founder and President of Camfed, has been awarded the 2014 WISE Prize for Education. The Prize was presented by Her Highness Sheikha Moza bint Nasser, Chairperson of Qatar Foundation, at the sixth World Innovation Summit for Education (WISE) in Doha, Qatar on 4 November 2014.  Ms Cotton spearheaded an internationally acclaimed model for girls’ education, which has transformed opportunities for millions of women in marginalised communities in Africa.


"It is our aim that this Prize should raise global awareness of the crucial role of education in all societies, and create a platform for innovative and practical solutions that might help alleviate some of the challenges which education faces around the world,” Her Highness Sheikha Moza bint Nasser, Chairperson of Qatar Foundation commented. 

Established in 2011 by Her Highness Sheikha Moza bint Nasser, the WISE Prize for Education is the first distinction of its kind to recognize an individual or a team of up to six people for an outstanding, world-class contribution to education. The WISE Prize for Education is enhancing the status of education by giving it similar prestige to other areas for which international prizes exist, such as literature, peace, and economics.

The inaugural WISE Prize for Education was awarded at WISE 2011 to Sir Fazle Hasan Abed, Founder and Chairman of BRAC, a Bangladesh-based initiative. BRAC has improved the lives of millions through education across three continents. The 2012 WISE Prize For Education was awarded to Dr. Madhav Chavan, co-founder and CEO of Pratham, the largest education NGO in India. Pratham provides education and literacy to millions at minimum cost. The 2013 WISE Prize was awarded to Ms. Vicky Colbert, Founder and Director of Fundación Escuela Nueva and co-creator of the Escuela Nueva education model. In 2014, Ms Ann Cotton, Founder and President of Camfed, was honored with the WISE Prize for Education. 

The WISE Prize for Education Laureates are inspiring role models for all those concerned with building the future of education as the foundation for a more secure, prosperous, and sustainable world. 

The nominations for the 2015 WISE Prize for Education will be open during the first quarter of 2015. 

Selecting The Laureate

Nominations for the WISE Prize for Education are invited from individuals and institutions with a demonstrable commitment to education, such as colleges, international organizations or private corporations. Eligible nominees will have demonstrated achievements that have had a lasting impact on education at any level, through inspiring and visionary approaches. Nominations for the WISE Prize for Education are made in the strictest confidence and the nominees are not made aware of their nominations. Self-nominations are not accepted and only the Laureate’s name is made public. 

Each year, The WISE Prize for Education Committee screens the nominations. An international Jury of distinguished individuals makes the final selection of the Laureate. 

The name of the Laureate is announced at the annual Summit’s Opening Plenary Session. The WISE Prize for Education is comprised of $500,000 (US) and a gold medal.