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article imageMadhav Chavan wins WISE Prize

By Steve Hayes     Nov 13, 2012 in World
Doha - Dr Madhav Chavan has been awarded the 2012 WISE Prize, the world's major prize for education. Chavan was awarded the prize in recognition of his innovative work in bringing literacy and numeracy to India's children.
At the opening of the World Innovation Summit for Education (WISE), Dr Madhav Chavan was awarded the prestigious prize, which has been called the Nobel Prize for Education. According to WISE's press room, Chavan was awarded the prize in recognition of his innovation in bringing education to millions of India's children. Indeed, his low cost model has been replicated in other countries in Asia and Africa.
Congratulating Dr Chavan on winning the prize, WISE Chairman, Dr Abdulla bin Ali Al-Thani said:
Madhav Chavan serves as an inspiration to all of us. His story combines the passion of a social entrepreneur with the patience and method of a scientist. His approach shows that the most important resources for successful innovation are a clear vision, determination and the ability to apply unrecognized capacities to a shared cause. Madhav Chavan has brought light into the lives of many millions of people and I congratulate him on his remarkable achievement.
BBC News reports that on receiving the prize, Dr Chavan said:
Much more remains to be done.
A comment that reveals both modesty and realism, as can be seen from the achievements and ambitions of the institute he has created.
Dr Chavan spoke of his motivation. He said:
I had friends working for women’s liberation. I had friends working for popularisation of science. I said to them – none of these things you want to do are possible if people cannot read and write.
The prize, which includes $500,000 and a gold medal, was decided by a jury which comprises:
Dr. James H. Billington, Librarian of Congress, USA.
H.E. Naledi Pandor, Minister of Home Affairs, MP, South Africa.
Prof. Zhou Qifeng, President of Peking University, Deputy of the National People’s Congress of the People’s Republic of China.
Mrs. Mary Robinson, President of the Mary Robinson Foundation – Climate Justice; Honorary President of Oxfam International; President of Ireland (1990 to 1997); Ireland.
Prof. Jeffrey D. Sachs, Director of the Earth Institute, Columbia University, USA.
Mrs. Fatma Rafiq Zakaria, Chairman of the Maulana Azad Educational Trust, India.
Dr. Abdulla bin Ali Al-Thani, Chairman of WISE, Qatar Foundation, Chairman of the Jury, Qatar.
A major theme of the WISE summit in Doha is the search for ways to reach the world's 61 million children who do not receive even basic, primary education.
More about Wise, Education, Nobel prize, Development, India
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