Originally from Japan, Yayoi is a trained education policy and planning specialist. She studied International Education Policy and Development and Bilingual and Multicultural Education at Columbia University and Boston University, respectively. Currently, Yayoi is the Chief of Section of Migration, Displacement, Emergencies, and Education at UNESCO HQ. Yayoi started working for UNESCO in 1998 at the Regional Bureau for Education in Latin America and the Caribbean. She has since worked in all aspects of education and intersectoral initiatives including youth and culture in Vietnam, the Pacific States based in Apia, Samoa, Eastern Africa based in Nairobi, and the Arab region based in Beirut. Prior to UNESCO, Yayoi had worked for ILO in Geneva on an international program to combat child labor through education. In the area of Education in Emergencies, Yayoi has headed UNESCO’s operations in Syria, Lebanon, Yemen, and Somalia, and served as the representative of GPE Coordinating Agency / co-chair of Local Education Group in Yemen.