Innovating Education and Educating for Innovation

The Power of Digital Technologies and Skills

image of Innovating Education and Educating for Innovation

OECD’s Innovation Strategy calls upon all sectors in the economy and society to innovate in order to foster productivity, growth and well-being. Education systems are critically important for innovation through the development of skills that nurture new ideas and technologies. However, whereas digital technologies are profoundly changing the way we work, communicate and enjoy ourselves, the world of education and learning is not yet going through the same technology-driven innovation process as other sectors.

This report served as the background report to the second Global Education Industry Summit which was held on 26-27 September 2016. It discusses the available evidence on innovation in education, the impact of digital technologies on teaching and learning, the role of digital skills and the role of educational industries in the process of innovation. The report argues for smarter policies, involving all stakeholders, for innovation in education.



Business-driven innovation in education

Innovation should offer the education sector the means to close the productivity gap by disseminating new tools as well as new practices, organisations and technology. This chapter considers why educational scientific research has done little to create a body of practical technical teaching know-how or improve practices in the classroom. It then uses patent data to analyse the state of technical innovation in the educational support market, and identifies the emergence of a specialised educational tools industry which may help to disseminate the results of scientific research into education. Although there are barriers to small innovative firms in the educational market, and patents can have a damaging effect on innovation within the classroom, it appears that the most promising markets for new educational tools lie outside the public school system – in tertiary education, corporate training and individuals undertaking lifelong learning.


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