India Education Investment Conclave
India Inc, in association with Deloitte and EPG, put together a two day conference which brought together leaders from the UK’s and India’s education sectors. Go Enrol’s CEO, Stephen Parkes, was in attendance. Here are some of his notes.
– India government wants to ensure that 500 million people in India are skilled labour by 2022.
– Patricia Hewitt, Chair of UKIBC and former Secretary of State for Trade and Industry, said that some of the major trends included Indian universities coming to the UK and British students going to India to study.
– Scaling up with quality continues to be a major challenge, so companies and organisations which can successfully execute “massification” will be well placed.
– India’s tertiary education growth is expected to be higher than anywhere else in the world. (Daniel Shah, The UK Higher Education International Unit)
– Any entity looking to do training in India needs to be specific about which sector they are training.
– Remember local motivations. A recurring theme was that a degree was often not about getting a job but about being eligible to marry.
– Companies will be playing a greater role in the courses being put onto MOOCs. Rajay Naik from the Open University explained how BT would be putting courses on Future Learn.
– Sandeep Aneja, Kaizen Private Equity, noted that with the proliferation of people relying on Google for facts instead of remembering them, we’re in danger of rewiring our brains, a process which has taken millions of years to achieve.
Unusual takeaway – courtesy of Atul Bhatnager COO, National Skills Development Coordination
– In banking you don’t need to know any more than 30 questions.
– UK has 1% of global population, does 3% of global R&D spend and accounts for 14% of research citations.
– Annual growth of additional 70,000 Indian student going to study overseas is expected by the UK Higher Education International Unit.
– BRAC are delivering a primary school education for USD36/annum/child
– India has 33,000 higher education colleges but only average 600 students at each
– 73% of Facebook logins are now done on mobile
The Role of Technology
A unifying theme found during the conference was that the focus was on the delivery efficiencies which technology can drive and the gaps it could fill. The impact technology had on learning outcomes, however, was one which is yet to be tested and explored, seemingly, by many in the sector. Much of this is driven by the fact that they are filling a void where there is currently nothing, for example, with skills training. This means there is plenty of experimentation of blended learning, online only learning etc but seemingly little accountability or assessment to help prospective students understand their options.
As expected this conference helped confirm that India will be an important part of Go Enrol’s student base and that we can play an important role. India is already our number 5 market, but with the expected growth in domestic and international students at different levels it’s reasonable to expect that position will strengthen.