Cláudio Pondé Avena has a PhD degree in Education (Economics of Education) from the Federal University of Bahia (UFBA); also, he holds Master´s and Specialization degrees in Economics (UFBA and Getulio Vargas Foundation, Brazilian School of Economics in Rio de Janeiro). Cláudio has been a Professor in Economics, Finance and Quantitative Methods for the last 25 years. Now, he is a Professor in MBA Programs at Universidade Salvador (UNIFACS). Furthermore, he is a Financial Analyst at Desenbahia, the State of Bahia Development Bank, where he has also acted as a researcher.
His research on education has focused on returns to education using the Human Capital approach and alternative theories, educational production functions, higher education access, and quality of higher and basic education in Brazil. As a Lemann Fellow, he has had the opportunity to go back to do quantitative research on the Economics of Education, which is the field he likes to do research on the most. He also passionately advocates that Brazilian leaders of education need to create a social movement that instills, in each of its citizens, the importance of the value of education for human, social, and economic development. He also voluntarily coordinates Sri Sathya Sai Education in Human Values workshops and teacher training sessions with a group in Salvador (his hometown).