Forum on World Class IT - 342 Interviews and Podcasts

Welcome to the Forum on World Class IT podcast series, a collection of exclusive interviews with Chief Information Officers and other IT industry thought leaders. Learn from the experts on how best to establish a truly World Class IT organization.

Podcast tags Archives: Education Technology Innovation

Salman Khan, Executive Director and Founder of Khan Academy

In this interview, Salman Khan, Executive Director and Founder of Khan Academy, a leader in online education, discusses World Class IT principle four, IT-Business Partnerships, with Metis Strategy. Some of the topics discussed include:

  • The genesis of the idea behind Khan Academy
  • Khan Academy’s aim to fill skill and knowledge gaps but not to compete with or replace the physical classroom
  • Khan Academy’s revenue model and examples of performance metrics used
  • How Khan Academy scales and develops its team
  • Eye on the Trends: Khan Academy, like other MOOCs, will further enable access to the best education and push for a competency based education and hiring system – a departure from the current setup that give excessive importance to an institute’s brand name

Anant Agarwal, President of edX

In this interview, Anant Agarwal, President of edX, a prominent MOOC, discusses World Class IT principle four, IT-Business Partnerships, with Metis Strategy. Some of the topics discussed include:

  • The genesis of the idea behind edX
  • Four aspects that make edX different from the other MOOCs
  • How edX benefits both its university partners and other universities unaffiliated with edX
  • edX’s KPIs
  • edX’s new strategic forays in to content for Advanced Placement (AP) tests and corporate training
  • Eye on the Trends: Increasing focus on research at MOOC-partner universities, blended courses at universities that combine online and traditional learning

Daniel Huttenlocher, Dean and Vice Provost of the Cornell NYC Tech Campus

In this interview, Dan Huttenlocher, Dean and Vice Provost of Cornell’s new NYC tech campus, discusses World Class IT principle one, People and principle four, IT-Business Partnerships, with Metis Strategy. Some of the topics discussed include:

  • Cornell Tech NYC’s mission
  • Why Cornell chose to locate the school in New York City
  • The school’s matrixed learning structure and three organizing themes, which focus on customer-centric technology
  • How the school is building a culture that equally values real-world engagement and academic accomplishments
  • Dan’s definition of success for the school
  • Eye on the Trends:Innovation in educational content delivery, MOOCs, IT as an increasingly user-centric field

Umar Saif, Vice Chancellor of Information Technology University, Pakistan

In this interview, Umar Saif, Vice-Chancellor of Information Technology University in Pakistan, discusses World Class IT principle four, IT-Business Partnerships, with Metis Strategy. Some of the topics discussed include:

  • How he leveraged experiences at Cambridge and MIT to bring back lessons to Pakistan
  • How LUMS first responded to the entrepreneurial ethos that Umar brought to the table
  • Umar’s innovations and projects that have had real social and private sector impact in Pakistan
  • Cultural and logistical constraints faced by tech entrepreneurs in Pakistan, including a murky intellectual property legal space
  • The rise of citizen journalism
  • Eye on the Trends: Fundamental changes occurring in the education and media fields, which create great opportunities for entrepreneurs like Umar in Pakistan

Nic Borg, Chief Product Officer and Co-Founder of Edmodo

In this interview, Nic Borg, Chief Product Officer and Co-Founder of Edmodo, a privake K-12 classroom communication tool, discusses World Class IT principle one, People, and principle four, IT & Business Partnerships with Metis Strategy. Some of the topics discussed include:

  • Revolution of the distribution model utilized by Edmodo and other virtual education platforms
  • The significance of focusing exclusively on as pre-K to grade 12 audience, and the challenges of reaching those of a younger age
  • The need for a digital platform in education
  • How Edmodo is designed primarily from the teacher’s point of view
  • Eye on the Trends:The growing importance and power of a global education network

Peretz Lavie, President of the Technion - Israel Institute of Technology

In this interview, Peretz Lavie, President of the Technion – Israel Institute of Technology, discusses World Class IT principle one, People, and principle four, IT & Business Partnerships, with Metis Strategy. Some of the topics discussed include:

  • The Technion’s mission and its role in driving entrepreneurship and engineering success in Israel
  • The innate entrepreneurial nature of Israelis as an immigrant nation and their unique geo-political context
  • What degree entrepreneurship can be taught to students, and what innate traits future entrepreneurs bring with them to the Technion
  • How alumni contribute in the classroom and providing business opportunities to Technion students
  • The Technion’s successful partnership with Cornell University to establish the Jacobs Technion-Cornell Institute in New York City and the contribution of JTCI to the city
  • Faculty’s involvement in the companies that Technion’s students develop, and how the Technion financially encourages faculty’s start-ups
  • Lavie’s own research on sleep and an individual’s peak creativity and alertness
  • Eye on the Trends: Nanotechnology’s role in monitoring health and automatic translations capacity to globalize education

Anne Margulies, University CIO of Harvard

In this interview, Anne Margulies, University Chief Information Officer of Harvard discusses World Class IT Principle One, People, and Principle Four, IT & Business Partnerships. Some of the topics discussed include:

  • Her role as the CIO of Harvard University
  • The strategic plans and future priorities of the IT organization
  • The IT Academy and how she builds new skills for her staff
  • How the IT Academy is administered, and how it functions
  • The toolkit of every IT professional and how she determines what skills are necessary within IT teams
  • Her history with massive open online courses (MOOCs) including edX and HarvardX
  • Eye on the Trends: The Internet of Things, Online Learning

Andrew Ng, Co-Founder & Co-Chairman of Coursera

In this interview, Andrew Ng discusses World Class IT Principle One, People, and World Class IT Principle Five, External Partnerships. Some of the topics discussed include:

  • Andrew’s unique, evolving, and passion-driven career path
  • The impact of AI on existing industries
  • Recommendations for CIOs and CEOs starting their AI journey
  • Advantages of implementing a centralized AI org structure
  • Opportunities for smaller organizations to leverage AI
  • How lifelong learning can minimize jobs displaced through AI
  • The importance of building strong teams and cultures
  • Key cultural components for success: work ethic and lifelong leaning
  • Chinese verses US business culture

Toomas Hendrick Ilves, Former President of Estonia

In this interview, President Ilves discussed World Class IT Principle Two, Infrastructure, and Principle Five, External Partnerships, among other topics including:

  • How President Ilves’ international upbringing shaped his worldview, including the influences of growing up bilingual, being a child of refugee parents, and learning to program at a young age
  • The role that President Ilves played in pushing the digitization narrative, both before he was President as part of the underground Communist resistance, as well as during his presidency
  • The impact that becoming a newly independent nation around the time that the internet was exploding had on Estonia’s ability to recognize the power of a digital society, and Estonia’s early digitization efforts such as e-identity and the X-Roads distributed architecture which was implemented in 2001
  • The collaboration required between the government, the private sector, and the public that was required to digitize the nation, why the private sector and general public have been more enthusiastic than the government due to the business efficiencies and personal conveniences, and how thee digital system is decoupled from politics in the mind of the Estonian people
  • Estonia’s cyber-war with Russia, which was the first of its kind, and how it resulted in the creation of the NATO Center for excellence in Cyber Security, which is located in Estonia
  • The features of Estonia’s e-residency program, such as being able to become an e-citizen and set up an online business registered in the European Union, and how that helps Estonia’s economy compensate despite its small geography and population
  • President Ilves’ focus since leaving office, including his academic focus on threats to democracy in the digital era, and work with other nations that are interesting in emulating Estonia’s digital society

Daphne Koller, Co-Founder and Co-Chief Executive Officer of Coursera

In this interview, Daphe Koller,co-founder and co-CEO of Coursera, discusses World Class IT principle four, IT & Business Partnerships, with Metis Strategy. Some of the topics discussed include:

  • The genesis of the idea behind Coursera
  • How Coursera differentiates itself from other MOOCs by facilitating a “social” aspect to learning
  • The competitive landscape, business strategy, and KPIs for Coursera
  • The promise that education technology and MOOCs have in transforming education around the world
  • Eye on the Trends: Internationalization of content and enabling of mobile solutions so students have access to the material even if they are not in class 24/7. Coursera intends to expand internationally, given only a third of its current students are from the US