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The 10 Trillion-Dollar Question for EdTech

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The EdTech global market is booming, and education is big business, but what are the challenges facing the industry?

For Benjamin Vedrenne-Cloquette, the Co-Founder of EdTechXGlobal, cracking this vast market is all about figuring out what 21stCentury skills and education will look like.

The education technology market has changed dramatically over the past five years, specially due to the expansion of mobile in the sector. With the number of worldwide students expected to hit 2.7bn by 2035, online platforms, mobile applications and new learning formats are massively improving access to education and bringing with them exciting standardisation possibilities for content, regardless of geographical location.



“Digital for education is not just about reformatting books and training manuals; it is about applying digital technology to deliver a new form of learning architecture,” explains Vedrenne-Cloquette. “People have always had the capability of re-inventing themselves for their environment and adjusting their skills accordingly. However, the challenge we currently face in the education market is using technology to ensure we can meet the pace in which these changes need to happen and respond to growing market needs. Without changing the way we learn and acquire relevant skills for this new era, we risk creating an unattractive dystopia of rising unemployment and inequality that will inevitably lead to increasing social unrest.”

The education technology market has changed dramatically over the past five years Share on X

Despite the growth in global education market spend, the European EdTech sector still suffers from under-investment and fragmentation when compared to other global markets such as Asia and the US. In fact, since 2007 Europe has invested less than 10% of the $6bn invested by the US into e-learning. There are still huge opportunities, however, with a burgeoning European start-up market filled with ingenious tech solutions to some of the education market’s biggest challenges.



EdTechXGlobal events provide a platform to showcase the impact that the knowledge economy has on society, and to showcase the sector’s innovation. The latest in the series – the inaugural edition of EdTechXAsia 2016 Summit and Expo – took place on the 8th and 9th of November in Singapore, with the remit of powering conversations around 21st Century Education and Skills amongst over 600 global EdTech experts, investors, educators and innovators.

“As a learning technologist, I need one foot in the industry and the other in academia.  Events like EdTechXAsia are perfect places to discuss the development and practical applications of technology in education.”

Eric Hawkinson, Associate Professor of Learning Design and Technology, Seibi University, Japan

Europe has invested less than 10% of the $6bn invested by the US into e-learning Share on X

Charles McIntyre, CEO of IBIS Capital and Co-Founder of EdTechXGlobal, firmly believes that the future of education lies with Asia, as more than US$2.3bn is being invested into the region’s EdTech start-ups.


General Manager of SingEx Exhibitions, Adrian Sng added, “We have chosen Singapore as the inaugural launch location because of her long-standing reputation as a regional educational hub, and the vast education community here.  And we aim to be the platform for the community in Asia to generate ideas and business collaboration opportunities through the conference and exhibition.”

More than US$2.3bn is being invested into Asian EdTech start-ups Share on X

“It’s a great platform for sharing knowledge and gaining fresh insight into education technology advancement from other thought leaders and innovators.”

Dr. Teddy Tjandra, Founder & CEO, Sukawu, Indonesia


Tech Trends is an official media partner of EdTechXEurope and EdTechXAsia



Alice Bonasio is a VR Consultant and Tech Trends’ Editor in Chief. She also regularly writes for Fast Company, Ars Technica, Quartz, Wired and others. Connect with her on LinkedIn and follow @alicebonasio and @techtrends_tech on Twitter.