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Global ed tech trends favour NZ with big opportunities

Global ed tech trends favour NZ with big opportunities for export growth, says design strategist

New Zealand has an incredible opportunity for export market growth with present trends in education technology, says Chris Meade, presenter at EdTech for Export 2014 (eT4e) conference in Wellington next week.

“Some of the major trends are now working in our favour,” says Mr Meade, Head of Strategy for Designworks in Wellington.

“We are no longer isolated from new markets and increasingly students and consumers prefer to interact remotely, on their terms. This all presents a great opportunity for market growth.”

The national EdTech event runs on June 19 and 20 and is organised by Grow Wellington and Education New Zealand. It aims to connect the education sector with tech businesses to ensure New Zealand enjoys growth in this sector – now worth $86 billion globally and forecast to grow to $257 billion by 2017.*

However, Mr Meade believes there are still major challenges facing Ed Tech companies. “Companies need to build an enduring business presence and value beyond a current product idea or need which may rapidly change or be copied. There are a plethora of businesses all diving into the same space and you need to define the end value you will have for your customers.”

Mr Meade says his team uses multi-disciplinary design practices geared at helping businesses solve challenges and grow, including export-led business. He will bring his expertise to the conference which will be his first.

“I’m definitely looking forward to the conference. The tech community in Wellington is already collaborative and our education sector has an excellent reputation. The cross-pollination of thinking across the sectors can only help power creation.”

Tickets are still available for the conference which will examine business growth and global opportunities for both local companies and individuals in the sector and include New Zealand speakers, workshops and showcases.

eT4e 2014 will feature international speakers including Jennifer Carolan, Head of NewSchools Seed Fund in California Jan Zawadzki the founder of Hapara, a company which has already attracted investment from NewSchools from its work in New Zealand. Also attending will be Lee Wilson, the CEO of Wisconsin-based Filament Games, and Dr Erkki Sutinen, head of the edTech Research Group at the University of Eastern Finland.

Speakers from New Zealand will include Chris Meade, Dr Sue Watson, the founding CEO of Summit Education Asia Pacific, a division of the Commonwealth Education Trust, Silvia Zuur from Chalkle, Chris Bulman from CustardSquare, Noeline Anderson, director of digital publishing company Pixelhouse; Adrian Sallis from Vital English, Maru Nihoniho from Metia Interactive, and Dave Moskovitz from WebFund.


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