The Atlantis Group is an exclusive international advisory group whose members are former ministers of education and heads of State.
To succeed in the future, we first need to learn the lessons of the past. That’s why the Varkey Foundation created the Atlantis Group, an invitation-only body which brings together former ministers of education and heads of government from countries and regions around the world.
Members of the Atlantis Group have decades of experience in running and reforming public education systems and have grappled with some of the biggest issues in education at the highest levels of State.
Today, as part of the Atlantis Group, their mission is to address the challenges in global education – and to inform a new generation of leaders and policy-makers.
Members of the Atlantis Group are:*
|Rosalía||Arteaga||Ecuador||President and Vice-President of Ecuador [1996-1998]|
|Elias||Bou Saab||Lebanon||Minister of Education and Higher Education [2014-2016]|
|Esteban||Bullrich||Argentina||Minister of Education and Sports [2015-2017] and Minister of Education of Buenos Aires [2010-2015]|
|David||Coltart||Zimbabwe||Minister of Education, Sport, Arts and Culture [2009-2013]|
|Claudia||Costin||Brazil||Secretary of Education for Rio de Janeiro [2009-2014]|
|Nuno||Crato||Portugal||Minister of Education and Science, Portugal [2011-2015]|
|Arne||Duncan||USA||Secretary of Education, USA [2009-2015]|
|Jorge||Ferrão||Mozambique||Minister of Education and Human Development, Mozambique [2015-2016]|
|Luis E.||Garcia de Brigard||Colombia||Deputy Minister of Education of Colombia [2014-2015]|
|Stefania||Giannini||Italy||Minister of Education, Universities and Research, Italy [2014-2016]|
|Justine||Greening||UK||Secretary of State for Education [2016-2018]|
|Zlatko||Lagumdžija||Bosnia and Herzegovina||Chairman of the Council of Ministers [2001-2002]|
|Ju-Ho||Lee||South Korea||Minister of Education, Science and Technology [2010-2013]|
|Armin||Luistro||Philippines||Secretary of the Department of Education [2010-2016]|
|Silas||Lwakabamba||Rwanda||Minister of Education [2014-2015]|
|Bálint||Magyar||Hungary||Minister of Education [1996-1998; 2002-2006]|
|Steve||Maharey||New Zealand||Minister of Education [2005-2007] [Hon. Maharey has also held other ministerial roles relevant to education]|
|Nicky||Morgan||UK||Secretary of State for Education [2014-2016]|
|George||Papandreou||Greece||Prime Minister [2009-2011] Minister of Education and Religious Affairs [1994-1996]|
|Remus||Pricopie||Romania||Minister of Education and Research of Romania [2012-2014] and State Secretary of Higher Education and Research [2007-2008]|
|Jo||Ritzen||The Netherlands||Minister of Education and Science and of Education, Culture and Science [1989-1998]|
|Jaime||Saavedra||Peru||Minister of Education [2013-2016]|
|Maia||Sandu||Moldova||Minister of Education [2012-2015]|
|Najat||Vallaud-Belkacem||France||Minister of Education, Higher Education and Research [2014-2017]|
|Androulla||Vassiliou||European Commission||European Commissioner for Education, Culture, Multilingualism and Youth [2010-2014]|
|Srdjan||Verbić||Serbia||Minister of Education, Science and Technological Development [2014-2016]|
|George||Werner||Liberia||Minister of Education [2015-2018]|
Atlantis Group summit, London – 21-22 October 2017
In October 2017, 15 members of the Atlantis Group came together for a two day event in London to discuss the role of political leadership in education. The Group were delighted to be joined by Lord Andrew Adonis, Andreas Schleicher from the OECD, Maria-Elena Aguero from the Club De Madrid, Professor Fernando Reimers from Harvard, Vijita Patel the Principal of Swiss Cottage School, John Bangs from Education International and Professor Becky Francis from the Institute of Education.
At the culmination of their discussions, they published an open letter to the governments of the G20, which can be read here.