Conference on Education and Health: Special Focus on Uttar Pradesh, The Glocal University campus – Saharanpur, UP 25 and 26 October, 2013

The state of Uttar Pradesh (UP), the most populous in India with 200 million people, is characterized by some of poorest socio-economic indicators anywhere in the world. While enrollment in primary education has improved to 95 percent in 2011, dropouts at the secondary level are upwards of 70 percent and the Gross Enrollment Ratio (GER) for higher education is among the poorest in India, the country itself being a laggard in this aspect compared to the rest of the world (i.e. 13 percent vis-a-vis 22 percent in China and 28 percent in the US).

The health sector does not do too well either. Routine immunization rates are only worse in Bihar and MP. Infant mortality rate at 71 percent is really high, maternal mortality has improved but at 345 is only better than in Bihar. Malnutrition is high and disease burden on account of Tuberculosis, Malaria and Diarrhea is the highest in the country. Most people do not have access to toilets or to clean drinking water. The state has a large network of nearly 25000 primary and sub health centers but a majority of those just don’t work even at the required minimum standard.

To discuss these issues in depth with experts on education and health sector and policy makers, E&H Foundation and the Glocal University organized a conference focusing on Education and Health in UP on 25th and 26th October, 2013. We sought papers from experts on what ails in the two critical development issues of education and health in UP, the policy challenges, success stories from other states and from UP, and what could be done to speed up the development process. These papers and ideas were presented and discussed extensively in the conference. Glocal University, based at Mirzapur in Sahranpur district hosted the conference and the participants at its campus. A select group of academics, policy makers, grassroots workers, donors and representatives from NGOs were invited to the conference.

The E&H Foundation works on education and health for the poor and marginalized in UP. E&H facilitates running of primary schools and uses them to increase the access to education to a large population. The Glocal University has been established to provide access to higher education to the large numbers of youth from the region.