My colleague Sharon Bamford was moderating the plenary session on this theme at the Education Innovation conference in London last week.

Sharon has written previously about her strongly held belief in the importance of investing in entrepreneurial skills so that graduates can make jobs, rather than just take jobs.

The conference showcased some intriguing ed tech innovations which are adding to the educational landscape, but there was also great support for the value of teachers and lecturers in developing the entrepreneurial, creative skills graduates will need.

For example, plenary speakers examined the implications of innovation, automation and disintermediation on education and the future employment market. On the one hand, up to half the world’s jobs are at risk of disappearing over the coming decades and yet on the other, young people need to be prepared for careers that don’t even exist yet.

Delivering the entrepreneurially-based education that Sharon and our Sannam S4 colleagues believe in depends on the inspiration and leadership of people.

Justine Van Fleet (the Education Commission) quoted findings from the ‘Learning Generation’ report, stating “Already today, 40 percent of employers globally are finding it difficult to recruit people with the skills they need. The ability to acquire new skills throughout life, to adapt and to work flexibly will be at a premium, as will technical, social, and critical thinking skills.”

Andreas Schleicher’s OECD data supported this with a compelling picture of how the quality of teaching vis a vis the class size impacts on educational outcomes.

In the end, the consensus was that although ed tech definitely has a role to play, particularly when we are looking at volume in countries such as India, there is an ever increasing need for the entrepreneurial aptitudes that universities can impart.

The article is written by Zoe Marlow, Head of Client Relations (Education).

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