Built to Last: Sustainability of Early Childhood Education Services in Rural Indonesia

Nozomi Nakajima, Amer Hasan, Haeil Jung, Angela Kinnell, Amelia Maika, Menno Pradhan

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


This paper studies the sustainability of preschools established under a large-scale project in rural Indonesia. We returned to project villages three years after the project closed to understand why some preschools were able to sustain operations while others closed. We present four key findings. First, 92 per cent of preschools from the project remained open three years after project funding ended. Second, preschools planned for sustainability by taking into account six factors: preschool quality, finance, supplementary services, market condition, household wealth, and parental involvement. Third, each of these factors predicts sustainability after project closure. Finally, interviews with former teachers show that the few preschools that closed were those that struggled to find both the financial and human resources needed to continue operating. We discuss actionable lessons for the design and sustainability of future early childhood education projects.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1593-1612
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of Development Studies
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 2021

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the Strategic Impact Evaluation Fund (TF0A0234) at the World Bank. Haeil Jung acknowledges that this work was supported by the Ministry of Education of the Republic of Korea and the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF-2016S1A3A2924956). Dedy Junaedi, Upik Sabainingrum, Anas Sutisna, Lulus Kusbudiharjo and Mulyana were instrumental in managing the fieldwork. The findings, interpretations, and conclusions expressed in this paper are entirely those of the authors. They do not necessarily represent the views of the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development/World Bank and its affiliated organizations, or those of the Executive Directors of the World Bank or the governments they represent. Information on how to access the data and programs to reproduce this paper are available at https://nozominakajima.github.io/research.html

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 The World Bank. Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Development


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