Smarter Education: A Catalyst for Ireland's Economic Recovery and Prosperity


Dr Mary Keeling - IBM

Smarter education has the potential to be a critical catalyst for our economic recovery and help lay the foundation for our future prosperity. Since the Irish education system was founded in 1831, our education system has undergone tremendous evolution, expansion and transformation. In today’s global economy, talent, knowledge and innovation are becoming increasingly important drivers of economic growth and activity – all underpinned by education. To ensure that our education system is fit for purpose in the 21st Century, we need to continue this transformation and evolution and focus our efforts now on taking advantage of the unprecedented opportunity presented by significant and intensifying global technological, social and economic trends. In essence, we need to leverage these trends to make our education system smarter.

Areas that will be covered in the presentation include:
1. Why education matters for growth and development This session will focus on the key trends in the global economy that are resulting in an increasingly important role for the education system in driving growth and prosperity in the Irish economy.
2. Challenges facing the Irish education system This will examine the key challenges facing education systems globally and show how these global challenges are manifest in the Irish education system and how they are constraining the ability of the system to support economic growth and development in the Irish economy.
3. How smarter education can help address these challenges This section will outline the key technological, social and other trends that are creating an unprecedented opportunity for Irish education providers to generate growth in the face of these challenges by making education ‘smarter’. Finally, the presentation will outline several areas that key stakeholders in the education system can focus on to take action now to help to deliver growth for the Irish economy in the short term, while at the same time laying the foundation to support growth in the medium to longer term.