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Tom Schuller, PhD

Tom Schuller, PhD

Hall of Fame Class of 2006 - European

Tom Schuller, PhD, is an international scholar, earning his master’s degree from Oxford University, a post-graduate certificate in education from the University of London, and his doctorate from Bremen University in Germany.

Currently he serves as director of the Centre for Educational Research and Innovation (CERI) a department within the Organisation for Economic and Cultural Development (OECD) in Paris, France.

He started his career in OECD as a researcher and then moved to England where he held positions at the universities of Warwick, Glasgow, Edinburgh and London. Schuller was professor at both Edinburgh and London, where he was dean of faculty for continuing education at Birkbeck College and where he also established and co-directed the Centre for Research into the Wider Benefits of Learning – a centre sponsored by the English government. The Centre is the first in the world which has endeavored to understand the wider significance of learning to human beings.

His research areas of adult education and lifelong learning include education and work, third age education, higher education, social capital and lifelong learning, comparative education and lifelong learning, and the hidden benefits of learning. 

Schuller has been an advisor to governments on lifelong learning policy both in the United Kingdom and elsewhere in Europe and recently was invited by the French government to serve on a committee looking at the future of schooling in France. It is rare for a British scholar to be asked to sit on a French government committee, and now in his position as director of CERI, Schuller is in a position to affect government policy on adult education and lifelong learning world wide.

An author of 14 books, Schuller also has published more than 100 papers on research, theory and policy. Many of these papers have appeared in leading refereed journals and illustrate his position at the forefront of issues confronting adult education and lifelong learning. 

In his position at OECD, he is often asked to address ministerial conferences, including the European Ministers Conference on the Bologna Agreement for Higher Education (conference at Bergen in Norway in 2005). He is also frequently invited to speak at conferences throughout the world. In addition, Schuller serves on the executive committee of the European Society for the Research into the Education of Adults (ESREA).

He is widely respected by the academic community for his research expertise and expert understanding of the issues in the wide field of his interests and, he is also trusted by governments as a policy advisor.

Schuller is considered among the leading and most highly respected academics in this field at the present time, both as an academic researcher and policy specialist in adult education and lifelong learning.