The posting points to a number of prominent academics and business people who recently, or in the past, made predictions about how emerging technology will radically impact our education system. Signs are now that significant changes is now approaching, bringing new opportunities to entrepreneurs who understand the industry and the needs of both educators and students.
In 1997, one of the smartest business strategy gurus in the world, Peter Drucker, said the following (in a Forbes Magazine article): “Thirty years from now the big university campuses will be relics. Universities won't survive. It's as large a change as when we first got the printed book.” We still have many years before we will know whether Peter Drucker will be right, but there are certainly growing signs of major change already starting to take place and in an earlier posting I referred to some of the changes, including MOOCs (in posting on “Beyond Courses and New Courses”).
Over the last week I have found three other very smart observers of the technology and business scene making predictions that major changes are around the corner for education:
- Peter Diamond gave a webinar last week as part of Singularity University’s series on “Which Way Next?” (http://bit.ly/v5op8e) :Peter talked about a number of major changes that are happening, and embraces the “exponential change” school of thought that Singularity University has long promoted. And one of the industries that Peter referred to as likely to see major disruption soon is education.
- Marc Andreesen--who first gained prominence with his work on the Netscape browser many years ago, and has since become a prominent venture capitalist in Silicon Valley (among various things)—recently wrote an article in New York Times: “Why Software Is Eating the World.” (http://on.wsj.com/o6yIeE). In the article, Andreesen noted “Health care and education, in my view, are next up for fundamental software-based transformation. My venture capital firm is backing aggressive start-ups in both of these gigantic and critical industries. We believe both of these industries, which historically have been highly resistant to entrepreneurial change, are primed for tipping by great new software-centric entrepreneurs.”
- Clayton Christensen—one of the most well-known Harvard Business School professors and authors of numerous books, including The Innovator’s Dilemma—gave a seminar at PARC in Palo Alto recently (http://bit.ly/x5FpWZ) and spent a good deal of his time in his presentation discussing how (Web) technology will help disrupt higher education in a major way.
It is interesting to see the growing attention to education, both Higher Education and K-12, and especially focusing on how technology will play a role in disrupting current systems and institutions. As we now move into the Post-PC era, with smartphones taking an ever greater role, who are the entrepreneurs who will lead the revolution? In future postings we will refer to some of the growing number of interesting EdTech startups in the Bay Area.