For related information, see Industry Partnerships.
“The investing community believes that the Internet is hitting edu¬cation, that education is having its Internet moment.”
-Jose Ferriera, Founder and CEO, Knewton
The worlds of business, government, and education are becoming increasingly focused on several interconnected themes: innovation, productivity, digital, and knowledge. Thanks to analytics (data mining) and other emergent tools and practices, our economy and society are tied to these concepts like never before - driving both economic and academic activities in new directions.
Private and public sector organizations and citizens alike, are expressing ever increasing needs for products and services to help them innovate, increase their productivity, build digital skills, and – together with K-12 and post-secondary institutions - continuously facilitate learning (knowing) more. Alberta has additional demands driven by economic growth, pushing everything from universities to the energy sector to seek new solutions.
The global elearning industry is projected to grow 23% by 2015, to a $166 billion dollar industry (GSV EDU Education Sector Factbook 2012). This does not include learning analytics, game based activities, etextbooks, virtual labs, or the biggest market of all – tools for blended/online learning environments. As illustrated by the March 18th Chronicle of Education’s A Boom Time for Education Start-Ups chart at right, EdTech investment in the US alone is large and growing.
Alberta has the resources it needs with the capacity to provide, or work with partners to leverage, local and international needs; and pathways to global markets. These include an entrepreneurial culture, talent, world-class education and research systems, ICT infrastructure, innovation supports, EdTech and analytics SMEs, and - at 40,000 - Canada’s primary digital education provision, expertise, and research team; Athabasca University.
As the next page will demonstrate, the University is moving into a number of areas with internal resources and initial partners. The potential for much more – from education, research, and commercial perspectives – is high. With the right partners, resources, and collaboration supports, Alberta has tremendous potential to be an innovation, productivity, digital, and knowledge growth leader.
As an online institution, Athabasca University was impacted by the internet more completely and immediately than most education providers, making it the core of academic, service, research, and capital planning well before most institutions. At the same time, as a provincially-funded institution with a national population, growing pressure to achieve efficiencies, innovate, and employ entrepreneurial approaches to resource provision affected AU faster than average. The resulting combination – leveraging digital resources to increase productivity, with the goal of improving knowledge provision and increasing innovation – was initially driven by the need for new business models and solutions; it is now helping to further our capacity, service, and reach.
Internal Partners: AVP Research, Deans
External Partners: AITF, TEC Edmonton, granting Councils, Cybera, government pilot programs
Internal Partners: VP IT, Computing Services
External Partners: Enterprise and Advanced Education, Post-secondary institutions, BCcampus
Internal Partners: VP IT, Computing Services, Centre for Learning Design and Development, TEKRI
External Partners: NRC, EdTech SMES, start-up/ICT networks, innovation supports, user groups
Internal Partners: Faculty of Business, Project Management Research Institute (PMRI), Pro SolO
External Partners: Corporate and government productivity support initiatives
To explore the above ideas, review areas for collaboration, or identify specific initiative leads, please contact Kelvin Cole, Industry Liaison Officer at firstname.lastname@example.org / 780-919-1354.
Updated December 15 2015 by Student & Academic Services