Ash Hartwell

Ash Hartwell has fifty years of field experience working at community, national and international levels on educational policy analysis, planning and research. He has provided technical assistance and training for the establishment and strengthening of national educational planning divisions in Egypt, Botswana, Lesotho and Uganda. In his own words:


I believe in the innate human love and capacity for learning (and playing), and hold that every child - and potentially every adult – has the capacity for genius (Awe, curiosity, joy, inventiveness, creativity…). In my work I have sought to support individual and community learning - which can be a process of transformation that leads to greater capacity, and opportunity, to participate in and contribute to society.


He has provided leadership in establishing innovative designs for basic education reform in Egypt, Ghana and Malawi, and, with a CIE/UMass project, the development of a health-oriented rural women’s literacy program in Afghanistan. Ash has been the Team Leader for numerous program and project evaluations in fields of basic education, youth assessments, and higher education.


Ash Hartwell at a blackboardHe has also held regular and honorary teaching positions in several universities in Africa and the United States. Ash is currently an Adjunct Professor with CIE at UMass Amherst, where he has designed and conducted courses on education policy; education costs and financing; monitoring and evaluation in development; application of learning principles to program design; alternative and complementary basic education; and education in post-conflict regions.


From 2015 – 2019 Ash was the Principal Investigator and Monitoring and Evaluation Specialist for the CIE/UMass Project Education in Crisis and Conflict-Affected Environments Network – ECCN) Project, under a sub-contract with the Education Development Center (EDC). Representing ECCN, Ash played a central role on the inter-agency Accelerated Education Working Group.  There he worked with CIE research assistants to produce the Guide to Accelerated Education Principles, the AEWG Learning Agenda, and other Accelerated Education tools.


Since semi-retirement from the University of Massachusetts, Ash has been also been active with area organizations working to support social justice and racial equity, achieving greater global consciousness and unity: these include: the Amherst League of Women Voters Racial Justice Committee, Co-founder and Board Member of Citizens for Racial Amity Now!, the Amherst Baha’i Community; the Interfaith Opportunities Network, Hampshire County; and Board member of The Global Citizens Initiative.


In his spare time Ash is a professional ski instructor with twenty years of experience teaching at the Berkshire East ski area in Charlemont, MA, where he has worked with school groups – mostly junior and senior high school learners as well as weekend carvers and warriors. [11-23]


Ash has also had an active publishing career.  Recent publications include:


  • “Review of Local Institutional Capacity Development for Education in Crisis and Conflict-Affected Environments.” ECCN for USAID. (2019).   Available here.
  • “Adaptive Management Annotated Bibliography.” ECCN for USAID. (2016). Available here.
  • “Enhancing Girls’ Education through Community Schools.” USAID Girls’ and Women’s Education Opportunity. American Institutes for Research. Available here. (2016).




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CIE Graduate