Collective action and the deployment of teachers in Niger: a political economy analysis

Research reports and studies
February 2016
Clare Cummings and Ali Bako M. Tahirou with Hamissou Rhissa, Falmata Hamed, Hamadou Goumey, and Idi Mahamadou Mamane Noura

The deployment of teachers in Niger is not based on teachers' preferred location, so it is very common for teachers to request a transfer to a different school. Most teachers prefer to work in urban schools, where the facilities are better, it is easier to study whilst working and there are more opportunities for extra work in private schools.

This poses a significant problem for the education system as a whole and for the education of children in rural areas, in particular. Through a political economy analysis, this briefing paper explores the causes of the problem of inequitable teacher deployment, the power and motivations of different actors to address this problem, and whether collective action might play a role in its resolution.

The resulting study, involving both desk and field research, makes a number of key findings and recommendations about the problem of teacher deployment and the opportunity for using collective action:

  • The system of teacher deployment and distribution is undermined by the personal interest of teachers
  • There is a lack of incentives for administrators or political leaders to uphold the formal rules of teacher deployment and distribution
  • There is a lack of regulations, accountability mechanisms and sanctions governing the distribution of teachers