IDELA: Using data to foster common solutions for young children

How can we leverage evidence to further the case for ECE at the national, regional, and global levels?

How can we better share what we learn about ECE programming, and which children it works for?

On September 6th we celebrated another milestone in early childhood policy and practice. The Save the Children team facilitated a discussion on how partners have used data from the International Development and Early Learning Assessment (IDELA) to address impact, equity, and advocacy efforts to change the lives of young children.

The team also officially launched the IDELA website featuring IDELA tools and resources from over 40 countries and 28 partners, as well as a report highlighting the strengths of collaborating around ECD data.

Fully videos of each speaker are now available here on our website.



Dr. Sharon Wolf is an Assistant Professor at the University of Pennsylvania Graduate School Of Education. She studies the social and environmental determinants of early childhood development, and develops and evaluates interventions to provide quality early childhood education as a pathway to reducing inequalities. She received her Ph.D. in Applied Psychology with a concentration in Quantitative Analysis from NYU. Dr. Wolf was a recipient of the American Psychological Foundation Elizabeth Munsterberg Koppitz Graduate Fellowship in Child Psychology, and the Institute of Education Sciences Predoctoral Interdisciplinary Research Training Fellowship. Dr. Wolf will speak about the adaptation, translation, and use of the IDELA in Ghana for the purpose of two early childhood education impact evaluations.


Dr. Angie Ponguta is the Associate Research Scientist at the Child Study Center at Yale University. Dr. Ponguta’s work centers on the advancement of ECD in low and middle-income countries with a focus on policy research, program evaluation, and advocacy. She obtained her PhD in Cellular and Molecular Pathology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and her Masters in Public Health at the Yale University School of Public Health. Dr. Ponguta has led and participated in ECD policy-making and policy analysis projects in over 10 countries in Africa, Southeast Asia, Eastern Europe, Latin America, and the Middle East. Recently Dr. Ponguta’s team at Yale University has partnered with researchers and organizations in Colombia, Pakistan, and Brazil to conduct impact evaluations of ECD programs. The goal is to empirically explore the impact of programs on children’s early learning and development. She will present on the diversity of evaluations in which IDELA can be used.


Katie Murphy is the Senior Technical Advisor for Early Childhood Development at the International Rescue Committee (IRC), and has over fifteen years of experience working in the field of ECD, education, and sustainable development. Currently a PhD candidate in Applied Psychology and Human Development at the University of Pennsylvania, Ms. Murphy has conducted research in ECD in Central America, Colombia, India, Kenya, Mexico, and Thailand. Ms. Murphy has an MPH from the University of Pennsylvania, an MEd in International Education Policy from Harvard, and a BA from Johns Hopkins University. Ms. Murphy will present on one of the IRC’s ECD programs: Preschool Healing Classrooms (PHC). IRC includes ECD as one of its core organizational objectives, recognizing that young children living in crisis and conflict face added disadvantages associated with the stress of exposure to violence, displacement, and family separation. PHC uses a multi-pronged approach, which includes an emphasis on support for parents and caregivers of young children, to improve children’s cognitive and social-emotional development and help them recover from experiences of trauma and displacement. This presentation will briefly highlight IRC’s use of IDELA in Lebanon and Ethiopia, how data can be used to inform advocacy efforts, and next steps for PHC program development.


Julieta Trias is Economist at the Social Protection and Jobs Global Practice at the World Bank and Cluster Coordinator for Early Childhood Development Cluster under the Strategic Impact Evaluation Fund (SIEF). She led 18 SIEF trainings on Impact Evaluation in all the regions to build capacity at country level. Her research focuses on building evidence on early childhood development interventions. She holds a Ph.D. in economics from University College London and MSc in Economics from the National University of La Plata (Buenos Aires). Before joining the World Bank, she worked at the Institute for Fiscal Studies (London) and the Inter-American Development Bank (Washington DC).