INNOVATION in education and developing sustainable models for imparting education in these post recession times (where funding has become a challenge) were some of the key concerns discussed at the second edition of the World Innovation Summit for Education (WISE) in Doha last week. The meet explored ways in which children across the globe can have access to quality education. The three-day event also showcased some of the sustainable models addressing access to education through innovation.
Addressing a gathering of over a thousand academics, thinkers and innovators across 100 countries, Sheikh Abdulla bin Ali Al-Thani, chairman of WISE, said that funding or investment in education has become a major challenge of recession hit economies. “Our objective is to bring together multiple stakeholders and connect theory with practice, as collaboration is critical in facing the most urgent and complex issue of our time - i.e. building the future of education.”Besides the plenary sessions that focused on improving education systems, exploring innovative trends and funding education, parallel workshops were conducted on education and reconciliation, learning through mobile devices and games, among others.
In her message to the participants, Nancy Pelosi, speaker of the United States House of Representatives, stressed that knowledge is the foundation of personal success, strong communities, thriving economies and progress for all nations. The summit awarded six projects that best fulfilled the theme of transforming education through innovation, investment and inclusion. Among these were the ‘citizens foundation’ project by Mushtaq Chhapra of Pakistan, ‘the mother child education’ programme by Ayla Goksel of Turkey, ‘the smallholders farmers rural radio’ project by Nnaemeka Ikegwuonu of Nigeria, ‘the MIT open courseware’ project by Cecilia d’Oliveira of the US, ‘rewrite the future’ project by Tove Romsaas Wang of the UK and the ‘AIMS Next Einstein Initiative’ project by Neil Turok of the Republic of South Africa.