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Innovation in Education: Companies outside of USA?

Innovation in education is getting attention globally. Entrepreneurship may well be the force that finally brings structural change to higher education after 800 years. The epicentre of edtech innovation is the USA. At least, that’s the impression I get from the blogs and news sites that I follow. In particular, Audrey Watters is an excellent source for what’s happening in startups. EdSurge is helpful in detailing startups and funding.

But what’s happening globally? I travel frequently and have come to see education as a global practice with surprisingly similar concerns regardless of country and region. The problems in Ecuador are not that different from the problems in South Africa. Or Canada. New and innovative teaching models through the use of technology are a global focus.

In spite of the global interest in education reform, I don’t hear much about education startups internationally. What are the most innovative companies that you’ve come across that are NOT US-based?

4 Comments

  1. EdSurge is a Washington Post / Kaplan propaganda organ that bought a MOOC from Utah to publicize itself. Don’t help them.

    Tuesday, October 30, 2012 at 11:18 am | Permalink
  2. p.s. these companies are *not* innovative – what they do is find and commercialize innovation that is happening elsewhere. Surely you see that, don’t you…?

    Tuesday, October 30, 2012 at 11:19 am | Permalink
  3. gsiemens wrote:

    I agree, Stephen, that many of these companies are not innovative and that what they often do is commercialize what others have done (i.e. moocs). I still think, however, that entrepreneurship is influencing change in education and we need to be aware of/track it. Much of the coverage of startups in US-centric. I’m looking to get an understanding of what’s happening in other countries as well…

    Tuesday, October 30, 2012 at 12:12 pm | Permalink
  4. Hi George: I was very glad to see you raise this issue, as it is of great interest to me, and I am especially focused on mapping out what is happening on the EdTech/edupreneuring front in the Nordic region. I have a project–funded by Nordic Innovation–to do something on this front and we have a team of Nordic researchers at work right now. It appears that things are starting to happen and I was particularly pleased the other day when two young, women edupreneurs from Norway came to meet with me at SRI and tell me about their startup. Some time next year I hope to have a much clearer picture of the EdTech landscape in the Nordic region and will then be happy to report back to you and the readers of your excellent blog. And, yes, I am also an avid reader of EdSurge and wish we had something like this for the Nordic region, but not sure–at least right now–that we have a great deal to report on, and certainly nothing coming close to what I am seeing here in Silicon Valley these days.

    Friday, November 16, 2012 at 11:19 am | Permalink