Gita Steiner-Khamsi


Professor and UNESCO Chair in Comparative Education Policy
Senior Advisor, NORRAG
Spoken languages
German, English, French, Farsi
Areas of expertise
  • Policy transfer and policy brokerage
  • Comparative policy studies in education
  • Globalisation and global governance in education
  • Public-private partnership, privatization in education


Dr. Phil., University of Zurich

Gita Steiner-Khamsi is Professor at Columbia University and UNESCO Chair in Comparative Education Policy at the Geneva Graduate Institute. She serves as the Senior Adviser for NORRAG (Network for International Policies and Cooperation in Education and Training), based at the Geneva Graduate Institute. 

A graduate from the University of Zurich (1983, Dr. Phil. in social psychology with minors in sociology and anthropology), she worked for the first ten years of her career at the Ministry of Education of the Canton of Zurich. Following the example of the Republic of Geneva, she built the first policy research unit at a Swiss cantonal ministry of education that dealt specifically with multicultural education. A three-year postdoc research grant enabled her to go to the Universities of London, Toronto and UC-Berkeley to examine education policies for immigrants, asylum seekers and ethnic minorities in the United Kingdom, Canada and the United States from an international comparative perspective. 

Her academic appointment at Columbia University, first as untenured Associate Professor, then as tenured Full Professor and Department Chair, started in 1995. In New York, she is based at the Department of International and Transcultural Studies in the graduate school of education, health and psychology of Columbia University (called Teachers College). In addition, she is board member of the Harriman Institute for Russian, Eurasian, and East European Studies of Columbia University. A past president of the Comparative and International Education Society (CIES), she published thirteen books and numerous articles on topics related to comparative policy studies, policy borrowing, and policy transfer in education. She was Visiting Professor at Aarhus University in Copenhagen, Humboldt University in Berlin, Stanford University, and the University of Oslo. Her geographic focus is Mongolia and Central Asia. 



Personal website
NORRAG website

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