Economist and Best-Selling Author Jean-Francois Rischard at ISTE 2010 Examines the Role Educators Can Play in Global Problem Solving

Jun 28, 2010, 20:36 ET from International Society for Technology in Education

DENVER, June 28 /PRNewswire/ -- Paris-based economist, former Vice President of the World Bank and bestselling author Jean-Francois Rischard delivered the opening keynote address – the first of a three-keynote series on exploring excellence in education – at ISTE 2010. The four-day conference for educators is being held June 27 through 30 at the Colorado Convention Center in Denver.  

Rischard opened his provocative keynote with a look at "the world's uncertain future," focusing on "20 global problems and 20 years to solve them." He analyzed the escalating threats from worldwide climate change, economic instability, water shortages and lack of education.

The exponential rate of change with regards to these problems over the past few decades has "overwhelmed human institutions such as the World Bank, IMF and UNESCO," he said.  "Institutions tend to be much more change-resistant when they should be the opposite."

Yet these problems are solvable, as long as we approach them globally, using new tools, skills, knowledge and especially a new mindset that puts global thinking first and local and national thinking second, Rischard said.

"Education is the biggest lever for solving our problems," he added. He challenged educators at ISTE 2010 to include a multi-disciplinary, multi-cultural approach in their classrooms and invited them to join a Global Issues Network.

Commenting on the opening keynote, ISTE CEO Don Knezek said, "This approach to global citizenship and authentic problem-based learning offers an excellent way forward and resonates with the work we've been doing with educators and governments all over the world around digital age learning, teaching and leadership. We know we must measure ourselves against global standards, not just local education benchmarks."

About ISTE

The International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE®) is the premier membership association for educators and education leaders engaged in improving teaching and learning by advancing the effective use of technology in PK-12 and teacher education.

SOURCE International Society for Technology in Education