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Thematic reports

A/HRC/50/32: Impact of the digitalization of education on the right to education


19 April 2022

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In this report, the Special Rapporteur on the right to education addresses the risks and opportunities of the digitalization of education for the right to education.

She calls for discussions relating to the introduction of digital technologies in education to be framed around the right of every person to public, free, quality education and the commitments of States in this regard both under international human rights law and Sustainable Development Goal 4.

In particular, the implementation of the right to education must respond to the needs of all persons to access, master and use technology as an empowering tool for being active members of society.

The digitalization of education should be geared towards a better implementation of the right to education for all, where it is demonstrated that it brings a significant added value. In this regard, it is important to understand the profit-driven agenda of digital technology lobbyists and companies. In addition, the digitalization of education should not increase inequalities and benefit already privileged segments of societies only, nor lead to violations of other human rights within education, in particular the right to privacy.


The Special Rapporteur organized, in cooperation with the Network for international policies and cooperation in education and training from the Geneva Graduate Institute (NORRAG), six online experts’ meetings to discuss various aspects of the impact of the digitalization of education on the right to education. Experts from various backgrounds and parts of the world, including from UNESCO, participated in these meetings.

  1. The role of technology in face-to-face and/or distance education. 6 May 2021
  2. The health impacts of the digitalization of education. 3 June 2021
  3. Citizenship: what should be the scope of a true digital education? 5 July 2021
  4. Data and the digitalization of education: datafication, evaluation and the issue of surveillance. 14 September 2021
  5. Privatisation and the digitalisation of education. 12 October 2021
  6. Diversity and the digitalisation of education. 9 November 2021

Please click here to see list of participating experts for all meetings.

Inputs received

The following spontaneous contributions have been received:

  1. European Council for Steiner Waldorf Education
  2. Handicap International / Humanity and Inclusion
  3. New Humanity for a United World (English / French)

Issued By:

Special Rapporteur on the right to education

Delivered To:

50th session of the Human Rights Council