The Slush 2014 EdTech track united key influencers from the international education technology communities to present a variety of ideas addressing the K-12 industry, fun learning platforms, the future of universities, and professional learning opportunities.
There were 20 presentations over the course of three hours allowing attendees to think, learn, and debate the topics and solutions offered by the speakers. The EdTech Europe team was honoured to be one of these featured presentations, but we were only one of many dynamic speakers showcasing innovative ideas about education technology.
Two speeches in particular, one by Abel Caine and John Martin, truly piqued our interest because the key insights from these thought leaders demonstrated how their organizations are addressing EdTech opportunities.
Abel Caine from UNESCO CEO John Martin from Sanoma Learning
Abel Caine: Director of Learning, UNESCO: "Empowering Young Creators"
Abel Caine was the first presentor within the EdTech track and he aptly set the stage for the following speeches. He adopted a positive, optimistic tone about the potential of global EdTech opportunities and shared details about UNESCO's future goals.
As seen in the photo above, UNESCO aims by 2017 to "empower 25,000 young people, particularly young women in developing countries with high-level skills and confidence to develop, promote, or sell at least 5,000 smart mobile apps for sustainable development and employment."
This ambitious goal is of course no small feat. Yet, the partnerships that UNESCO has fostered with leading startups in the developing world demonstrate that this benchmark is obtainable and the global EdTech community should continuously support this objective. Through UNESCO's YouthMobile programme, Abel and his co-organizer Davide Storti hope to provide training materials and instruct teachers on helping young leaders learn to code and develop skills to create their own mobile apps.
Hearing the perspective and goals of a leading international organization like UNESCO was a wonderful opportunity for all participants of Slush. Abel's open invitation to support the UNESCO 2017 goal underscored the need for a wide coalition of support across all industries of the greater EdTech community.
To get involved with YouthMobile visit: http://en.unesco.org/youthmobile
John Martin: CEO of Sanoma Learning: "EdTech Transforming the Way We Learn"
John immediately followed Abel by presenting key facts about the larger international EdTech market and as seen in the photo above, illustrated that the European industry has vast potential to continue to grow at a rapid rate. Educational spending is the highest in the K-12 sector and John believes that his company, Sanoma, can truly help make a 'positive impact on learning.' Specifically, the Sanoma team maintains that there are 3 cornerstones facilitating excellence in education:
A. The teacher is the killer app
B. Motivated pupils engage to learn
C. Learning solutions are high impact enablers
John continued by succinctly summarizing 7 major trends that he believed would 'enable the transformation of education' from:
- Input to impact
- Mass to personal
- Workload to workflow
- Data to insight
- Classroom to borderless
- 20th Century to 21st Century Learning
- From scarcity to abundance
These 7 trends are very similar to the 12 EdTech predictions that we released for our 2014 summit, and we thoroughly enjoyed hearing John describe why he also prioritized these ideas as well.
Thanks to an upload from Sanoma, you can watch his full speech here.
These two insightful presentations presented ideas that all EdTech leaders can learn from and were honoured to be involved in helping power this dynamic EdTech track at Slush.