Professor Caroline Dyer

Professor Caroline Dyer


I began my career as a modern linguist and have a first degree in German with Dutch from the University of Liverpool. After graduating I worked as an English language teacher and then as an education journalist in Hong Kong. I returned to the UK to complete a doctoral thesis at the University of Edinburgh, funded by the ESRC, on educational policy implementation in India.

I held academic posts at the University of Edinburgh, as PI of the ESRC-funded project Literacy for Nomads, and at the University of Manchester as Senior Research Fellow in International Education before joining the University of Leeds in 2004. 

I served two terms as Chair of the British Association for International and Comparative Education, three terms as Chair of the Editorial Board of the journal Compare, and was Chair of the WUN’s Global Challenge in Higher Education and Research (GHEAR) from 2017-2019. I am currently PI on three GCRF-funded research projects in India.


Livelihoods and Learning, by Caroline Dyer.

Operation Blackboard: policy implementation in Indian elementary education

Research interests

My research explores how various forms of education intersect with social inclusion and further or undermine social justice; and policy development. I work with communities who engage in livelihood-related mobility and are widely excluded from formal education systems – the 'left behind' in SDG parlance. I have investigated learning and livelihoods among mobile pastoralists in India, Afghanistan, Kenya, Ethiopia and Mongolia via externally funded research projects and as a consultant. At present I’m PI on a GCRF/British Academy funded project investigating dignity and heritage among mobile pastoralist women in India. I am interested in accountability towards disadvantaged learners in education systems, particularly in India, and am PI on a DFID-ESRC funded research project (RAISE), which is a cross-scalar comparative study of accountability relations in Indian elementary education, and PI on a GCRF-ESRC project investigating early years numeracy in India. My interest in education policy formulation and implementation began with my doctoral research on Operation Blackboard in India in the 1990s and I have just completed an Education Sector Policy Review in Mongolia with UNESCO. 

<h4>Research projects</h4> <p>Any research projects I'm currently working on will be listed below. Our list of all <a href="">research projects</a> allows you to view and search the full list of projects in the faculty.</p>


  • PhD
  • BA Hons
  • TEFL preparatory certificate

Professional memberships

  • BAICE - British Association for International and Comparative Education

Student education

I lead our teaching of education in development and contribute to our teaching of social justice and global inequalities in the MA Global Development programme. My teaching is research-led, delivered through interactive approaches designed to maximise student opportunities to reflect on and share critical insights.

Research groups and institutes

  • Centre for Global Development

Current postgraduate researchers

<h4>Postgraduate research opportunities</h4> <p>The school welcomes enquiries from motivated and qualified applicants from all around the world who are interested in PhD study. Our <a href="">research opportunities</a> allow you to search for projects and scholarships.</p>