Professor James Tooley

Professor of Educational Entrepreneurship and Policy

James TooleyJames Tooley is professor of educational entrepreneurship and policy at the University of Buckingham, with previous academic appointments at the Universities of Oxford, Manchester and Newcastle. His ground-breaking research on low-cost private education in developing countries has won numerous awards, including a gold prize in the first International Finance Corporation/Financial Times Private Sector Development Competition, the Templeton Prize for Free Market Solutions to Poverty, and the IEA’s National Free Enterprise Award. His book based on this research, The Beautiful Tree (Penguin and Cato Institute), was a best-seller in India and won the Sir Antony Fisher Memorial Prize. Other of his books include Education, War and Peace and Liberty to Learn.

Building on his research, Tooley has pioneered models of innovation in low-cost private education. He has co-founded chains of low-cost schools in Ghana (Omega Schools), India (Cadmus Education), Honduras (Cadmus Academies) and, most recently, in England (Independent Grammar Schools). He is also involved with large associations of low-cost private schools, including as Patron of the Association of Formidable Educational Development (Nigeria) and Chief Mentor of the National Independent Schools Alliance (India).

Prof Tooley is available for postgraduate supervision with students interested in areas related to educational entrepreneurship, education policy, private education, education and development, the role of government in education, comparative education, and philosophy of education. Other areas for supervision will also be considered. Please contact: or phone +44 (0)1280 820227.

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