Date
05 Dec 2021
Time
2:30pm - 6:30pm
Location
Hong Kong & Virtual (GMT+8)
2021 Yidan Prize Summit: Creating a better future through education

This December, we’re welcoming our 2021 laureates and shining a spotlight on their work. And we’re inviting fellow education leaders to discuss the most pressing issues in education.

Creating connections across the global education community is one of the things we’re most proud of. We know it sparks new ideas and moves projects forward, and we can’t wait to see what follows our discussions.

Hear from our laureates and expert guests on the big issues in education

Our 2021 education research laureate, Professor Eric A. Hanushek, draws on his wealth of influential research in our panel on putting effective policy into action today. While Dr Rukmini Banerji, our 2021 education development laureate, brings decades of work closing learning gaps in India to our panel on child-centered learning.

Speakers from the worlds of academia, policy, and philanthropy also join us for sessions on creating a better future through education and the power of learning through play at the Summit.

Register now to join us

Program
Resources
Please find the biography of our speakers in this PDF file.
2:30–2:35pm – Opening
2:35–2:40pm – Welcome remarks
  • Dr Charles CHEN Yidan, Founder, Yidan Prize
2:40–3:30pm – Panel 1: Putting Effective Education Policy into Action Today
  • Professor Eric A. Hanushek, 2021 Yidan Prize for Education Research Laureate, and Paul and Jean Hanna Senior Fellow, Hoover Institution of Stanford University
  • Dr Jaime Saavedra, Senior Director, Education Global Practice, World Bank Group
  • Professor Ludger Woessmann, Professor of Economics, University of Munich, and Director, ifo Center for the Economics of Education
  • Moderated by Ms Barbara Bruns, Adjunct Professor, Georgetown University, and Non-Resident Fellow, Center for Global Development

In conversation with:

  • The Hon. Bernard Charnwut Chan, GBM, GBS, JP, Convenor of the Non-Official Members of the Executive Council, HKSAR
3:30–3:40pm – Break
3:40–4:30pm – Panel 2: Placing Children at the Heart of Teaching and Learning
  • Dr Rukmini Banerji, 2021 Yidan Prize for Education Development Laureate, and CEO, Pratham Education Foundation
  • Professor Abhijit Banerjee, 2019 Nobel Prize Laureate in Economics, and Ford Foundation International Professor of Economics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • Professor Esther Duflo, 2019 Nobel Prize Laureate in Economics, and Abdul Latif Jameel Professor of Poverty Alleviation and Development Economics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • Moderated by Mr Ronnie C. Chan, Co-Founder and Chair, Centre for Asian Philanthropy and Society, and Chair, Hang Lung Properties Limited
4:30–5:25pm – Panel 3: Creating Better Futures through Education
  • Mr Leong Cheung, Executive Director, Charities & Community, The Hong Kong Jockey Club, and Co-Chair, Council, United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN), Hong Kong Chapter
  • Mr Andreas Schleicher, Director for the Directorate of Education and Skills, OECD
  • Dr Sobhi Tawil, Director, Future of Learning and Innovation, UNESCO
  • Professor Rocky S. Tuan, Vice-Chancellor and President, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, and Co-Chair, Council, United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN), Hong Kong Chapter
  • Moderated by Dr Christopher Thomas, Director of Partnerships, Yidan Prize Foundation
5:25–5:35pm – Break
5:35–6:25pm – Panel 4: Learning through Play: Global and China Perspectives
  • Professor Kathy Hirsh-Pasek, Stanley and Deborah Lefkowitz Professor of Psychology, Temple University, and Senior Fellow, Brookings Institution
  • Dr Junjie Shang, Associate Professor, Graduate School of Education, Peking University
  • Professor Yang Rui, Associate Dean, Faculty of Education, The University of Hong Kong
  • Dr Bo Stjerne Thomsen, Chair of Learning through Play, and Vice-President, The LEGO Foundation
  • Moderated by Dr Zhaoli Meng, Research Advisor, Chen Yidan Foundation
6:25–6:30pm – Closing remarks
  • Professor Cheng Kai-ming, Convenor, Advisory Committee, Yidan Prize Foundation

Please find the biography of our speakers in this PDF file.

SPEAKERS’ BIOGRAPHY

Panel 1—Putting Effective Education Policy into Action Today

Professor Eric A. Hanushek
2021 Yidan Prize for Education Research Laureate
Paul and Jean Hanna Senior Fellow, Hoover Institution of Stanford University

Eric Hanushek is the Paul and Jean Hanna Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution of Stanford University. He is internationally recognized for his economic analysis of educational issues, and he received the Yidan Prize for Education Research in 2021. His research has had broad influence on education policy in both developed and developing countries. He is the author of numerous widely-cited studies on the effects of class size reduction, school accountability, teacher effectiveness, and other topics. He was the first to research teacher effectiveness by measuring students’ learning gains, which formed the conceptual basis for using value-added measures to evaluate teachers and schools, now a widely adopted practice. His recent book, The Knowledge Capital of Nations: Education and the Economics of Growth summarizes his research establishing the close links between countries’ long-term rates of economic growth and the skills level of their populations. His current research analyzes why some countries’ school systems consistently perform better than others. He has authored or edited twenty-four books along with over 250 articles. He is a Distinguished Graduate of the United States Air Force Academy and completed his PhD in economics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

 


Dr Jaime Saavedra
Senior Director, Education Global Practice, World Bank Group

Jaime Saavedra leads the Education Global Practice at the World Bank Group. Between 2013 and 2016 he served as Minister of Education of Peru. During his tenure, he promoted a teachers’ career reform, an expansion of full time secondary, and a bold university reform. The performance of Peru’s education system improved substantially as measured by international learning assessments. Prior to assuming this role, he was Global Director for Poverty Reduction and Equity and Acting Vice-President of Poverty Reduction and Economic Management at the World Bank, where we co-led the establishment of the twin goals of Eliminating Extreme Poverty and pursuing Shared Prosperity, which continue guiding the work of the institution. Throughout his career, Dr Saavedra, a Peruvian national, has led groundbreaking work in the areas of poverty and inequality, labor markets, the economics of education, and the use of data and evidence in public policy. He has held positions at the Inter-American Development Bank, Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean, International Labor Organization, LACEA and the National Council of Labor in Peru. He has been Executive Director of Grupo de Análisis para el Desarrollo a leading think tank in Peru. He has also held teaching positions and Universidad Católica of Peru, and the University of Toronto. He is currently board member of Teach for All, of the Global Education Evidence Advisory Panel, and the High-Level Council on Leadership & Management for Development of the Aspen Institute. Dr Saavedra holds a PhD in economics from Columbia University and a Bachelor’s degree in economics from the Catholic University of Peru.

 

Professor Ludger Woessmann
Professor of Economics, University of Munich
Director, ifo Center for the Economics of Education

Ludger Woessmann is Director of the ifo Center for the Economics of Education and Professor of Economics at the University of Munich. He is also Distinguished Visiting Fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University. Being interested in the determinants of long-term prosperity of mankind, his main research focus is on the economics of education, especially the importance of education for economic prosperity and the effects of school systems on educational achievement and equality of opportunity. He is Fellow of the German National Academy of Sciences Leopoldina, the Academic Advisory Council of the German Federal Ministry of Economics, and the International Academy of Education.

 

The Honorable Bernard Charnwut Chan, GBM, GBS, JP
Convenor of the Non-Official Members of the Executive Council, HKSAR

Bernard Charnwut Chan is a deputy to the National People’s Congress of China, a non-official member of Hong Kong’s Executive Council (2004-09 and from 2012) and (from 2017) the Convenor of the Non-Official Members of the Executive Council. He is also a former member of Hong Kong’s Legislative Council (1998-2008). A graduate of Pomona College in California, he is the President of Asia Financial Holdings and Chairman of Asia Insurance. He is Chairman of the Hong Kong – Thailand Business Council and an advisor to Bangkok Bank (China) Co. Ltd.  He sits on the boards of several local and overseas companies in financial services and is a director of Bumrungrad Hospital Public Company in Thailand.

Among his public service activities, he is Chairperson of the Hong Kong Council of Social Service, Chairman of the Hong Kong Palace Museum Ltd, Chairman of Tai Kwun Culture & Arts Co. Ltd., Chairman of the Executive Committee of the Hong Kong Chronicles Institute and Vice Chairman of the Board of Governors of Our Hong Kong Foundation. Past positions include Council Chair of Lingnan University, Chairman of the Council for Sustainable Development, Chairman of the Antiquities Advisory Board, Chairman of the Advisory Committee on Revitalization of Historic Buildings and Chairman of the two Standing Committees on Disciplined Services and Judicial Salaries and Conditions of Service. He is also a Trustee Emeritus of Pomona College. He was appointed a Justice of the Peace in 2002, and a Commander (3rd Class) of the Most Noble Order of the Crown of Thailand in 2004. In 2006, he was awarded the Gold Bauhinia Star by the Hong Kong SAR Government, and in 2020 he received Hong Kong’s highest honor, the Grand Bauhinia Medal. He has been conferred honorary degrees from Lingnan University, City University of Hong Kong, the Open University of Hong Kong, and Savannah College of Art and Design.

 

Moderator: Ms Barbara Bruns
Adjunct Professor, Georgetown University
Non-Resident Fellow, Center for Global Development

Barbara Bruns is Adjunct Professor at Georgetown University and joined the Center for Global Development as a visiting fellow in late 2015. Prior to that, as a lead education economist at the World Bank, she specialized in Latin American education and rigorous evaluation of education programs. She is lead author of the book Great Teachers: How to Raise Student Learning in Latin America and the Caribbean (2014) with Javier Luque and Achieving World Class Education in Brazil: the Next Agenda, with David Evans and Javier Luque (2011). She also co-authored Making Schools Work: New Evidence on Accountability Reforms (with Deon Filmer and Harry Patrinos, 2011).

Ms Bruns was the first manager of the Strategic Impact Evaluation Fund (SIEF) at the World Bank, co-authored the World Bank/IMF MDG Global Monitoring Reports of 2005, 2006, and 2007, served on the Education Task Force appointed by the UN Secretary-General in 2003, co-authored the book A Chance for Every Child: Achieving Universal Primary Education by 2015, and headed the secretariat of the global Education for All—Fast Track Initiative (EFA-FTI) from 2002 to 2004. Before joining the World Bank, Barbara was a staff economist on the US Senate Banking Committee and legislative assistant to Senator Adlai Stevenson III. She holds degrees from the London School of Economics and the University of Chicago.

 

Panel 2—Placing Children at the Heart of Teaching and Learning

Dr Rukmini Banerji
2021 Yidan Prize for Education Development Laureate
CEO, Pratham Education Foundation

Rukmini Banerji was trained as an economist at St. Stephen’s College (Delhi) and the Delhi School of Economics. She was a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford University (1981-83) and completed her PhD at the University of Chicago in 1991. Dr Banerji returned to India in 1996 and joined Pratham. She worked extensively in Pratham’s education programs as well as supporting large scale partnerships with governments. She led Pratham’s research and assessment efforts including the Annual Status of Education Report (ASER) exercise from 2005 to 2014. Since 2015, she has been the CEO of Pratham. In 2008, Rukmini was awarded the Maulana Abul Kalam Shiksha Puraskar by the Government of Bihar, India. She was the first recipient of this award. Originally from Bihar, she is now based between New Delhi and Pune. Dr Banerji writes frequently on education in both Hindi and English dailies in India and enjoys writing books and stories for children. She received the Yidan Prize for Education Development in 2021.

 

Professor Abhijit Banerjee
2019 Nobel Prize Laureate in Economics
Ford Foundation International Professor of Economics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Abhijit Vinayak Banerjee is the Ford Foundation International Professor of Economics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. In 2003 he co-founded the Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL) with Esther Duflo and Sendhil Mullainathan, and he remains one of the Lab’s Directors. Professor Banerjee is a fellow of the National Academy of Sciences, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the Econometric Society. He is a winner of the Infosys Prize, a co-recipient of the 2019 Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel for his groundbreaking work in development economics research.

Professor Abhijit is the author of many articles and five books, including Poor Economics, which won the Goldman Sachs Business Book of the Year, and Good Economics for Hard Times, both co-authored with Esther Duflo. He is the editor of three more books and has directed two documentary films. He has served on the U.N. Secretary-General’s High-level Panel of Eminent Persons on the Post-2015 Development Agenda. He is a trustee of Save the Children USA and the Chair of the Global Education Evidence Advisory Panel and the Global Advisory Board for Covid-19 Response of the government of West Bengal.

 

Professor Esther Duflo
2019 Nobel Prize Laureate in Economics

Abdul Latif Jameel Professor of Poverty Alleviation and Development Economics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Esther Duflo is the Abdul Latif Jameel Professor of Poverty Alleviation and Development Economics in the Department of Economics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a co-founder and co-director of the Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL). In her research, she seeks to understand the economic lives of the poor, with the aim to help design and evaluate social policies. She has worked on health, education, financial inclusion, environment, and governance. Professor Duflo’s first degrees were in history and economics from Ecole Normale Superieure, Paris. She subsequently received a PhD in Economics from MIT in 1999.

Professor Duflo has received numerous academic honors and prizes including 2019 Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel (with co-Laureates Abhijit Banerjee and Michael Kremer), the Princess of Asturias Award for Social Sciences (2015), the A.SK Social Science Award (2015), Infosys Prize (2014), the David N. Kershaw Award (2011), a John Bates Clark Medal (2010), and a MacArthur “Genius Grant” Fellowship (2009).  With Abhijit Banerjee, she wrote Poor Economics: A Radical Rethinking of the Way to Fight Global Poverty, which won the Financial Times and Goldman Sachs Business Book of the Year Award in 2011 and has been translated into more than 17 languages, and the recently released Good Economics for Hard Times. She is the Editor of the American Economic Review, a member of the National Academy of Sciences and a Corresponding Fellow of the British Academy.

 

Moderator: Mr Ronnie C. Chan
Co-Founder and Chair, Centre for Asian Philanthropy and Society
Chair, Hang Lung Properties Limited

Ronnie C. Chan is the Chair of Hang Lung Group Limited and its subsidiary Hang Lung Properties Limited, both publicly listed in Hong Kong. The Group expanded into mainland China in 1992, developing, owning, and managing world-class commercial complexes in key tier one and tier two cities. In 1986, Mr Chan co-founded Morningside in Hong Kong, an investment group engaged in many businesses in the U.S., Western Europe, Southeast Asia, and mainland China. It was among the earliest private equity investors in Hong Kong and mainland China. Since 2000, it has concentrated on venture capital: TMT in China and biotechnology globally.

Mr Chan is active in many other non-profit and educational organizations. Mr Chan is Chairman of the Executive Committee of The Better Hong Kong Foundation. He founded and chairs the China Heritage Fund, is a co-founding Director of The Forbidden City Cultural Heritage Conservation Foundation in Beijing, and is former Vice President and former Advisor of the China Development Research Foundation in Beijing. He is Co-Founder and Chairman of the Centre for Asian Philanthropy and Society and Founding Chairman Emeritus of the Asia Business Council. He is also former Chairman of the Hong Kong-United States Business Council, and former Chairman of the Executive Committee of the One Country Two Systems Research Institute. Mr. Chan is Chair Emeritus of the Asia Society and Chairman of its Hong Kong Center, a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, the National Committee on United States-China Relations, and the Committee of 100. Mr Chan serves or has served on the governing or advisory bodies of several think tanks and universities, which include: Peterson Institute for International Economics, World Economic Forum, East-West Center, Pacific Council on International Policy, Eisenhower Fellowships, The Maureen and Mike Mansfield Foundation, University of Southern California, Indian School of Business, The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Yale University, Tsinghua University, and Fudan University.

 

Panel 3—Creating Better Futures through Education


Mr Leong Cheung
Executive Director, Charities & Community, The Hong Kong Jockey Club
Co-Chair, Council, United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN), Hong Kong Chapter

Leong Cheung is the Executive Director of Charities & Community at The Hong Kong Jockey Club. In this capacity he is also the co-chair of the Hong Kong Chapter of the United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network. Prior to joining the Club, Mr Cheung was the Operating Partner with Bain Capital. Before that he was the Managing Director of Global Sourcing & Supply Chain at Esquel Group, the founder and CEO of an education focused Internet venture, and a senior consultant at the Boston Consulting Group. Mr Cheung is also the co-founder of an innovative social enterprise, RunOurCity.

In addition to his present roles, Mr Cheung is active in the community. He currently serves as the chairperson of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government’s Committee on Reduction of Salt and Sugar in Food.  He is a director of the Hong Kong Mortgage Corporation Limited and is an adjunct professor at The Chinese University of Hong Kong. Mr Cheung has an MBA from Harvard Business School and a BBA from The Chinese University of Hong Kong.

 

Mr Andreas Schleicher
Director for the Directorate of Education and Skills, OECD

Andreas Schleicher is Director for Education and Skills, and Special Advisor on Education Policy to the Secretary-General at the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). As a key member of the OECD’s Senior Management team, he supports the Secretary-General’s strategy to produce analysis and policy advice that advances economic growth and social progress. In addition to policy and country reviews, he oversees the Program for International Student Assessment (PISA), the OECD Survey of Adult Skills (PIAAC), the OECD Skills Strategy, the OECD Teaching and Learning International Survey (TALIS), and the development and analysis of benchmarks on the performance of education systems (INES). Before joining the OECD, Mr Schleicher was Director for Analysis at the International Association for Educational Achievement (IEA). He studied Physics in Germany and received a degree in Mathematics and Statistics in Australia. He is the recipient of numerous honors and awards, including the “Theodor Heuss” prize, awarded in the name of the first president of the Federal Republic of Germany for “exemplary democratic engagement”. He holds an honorary Professorship at the University of Heidelberg.

 

Dr Sobhi Tawil
Director, Future of Learning and Innovation, UNESCO

Sobhi Tawil is Director of the Future of Learning and Innovation Team at UNESCO and leads the Futures of Education initiative – an ambitious attempt to reflect on and generate debate on how education might need to be re-thought in a world of increasing complexity, uncertainty, and precarity. During his UNESCO career, Sobhi Tawil also headed the Education 2030 Partnerships, Cooperation and Research Team (Paris), the Education Program for the Maghreb (Rabat), and the Capacity Building Program for Curriculum Development at the International Bureau of Education (Geneva). Prior to joining UNESCO, Sobhi Tawil worked with diverse institutions and organizations, including the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), the Graduate Institute for International and Development Studies (Geneva), the Network for Education Policy Research Review (NORRAG), and the International Institute for Higher Education (Rabat).

Dr Tawil holds a PhD in Education and Development from the Graduate Institute for International and Development Studies (Geneva), and a Masters in Comparative Education from the Faculty of Psychology and Education at the University of Geneva.

 

Professor Rocky S. Tuan
Vice-Chancellor and President, The Chinese University of Hong Kong
Lee Quo Wei and Lee Yick Hoi Lun Professor of Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine
Co-Chair, Council, United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN), Hong Kong Chapter

Rocky S. Tuan began his term as the eighth Vice-Chancellor and President of The Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK) on 1 January 2018.  Born and raised in Hong Kong, he pursued further studies in the USA and received his PhD in Life Sciences in 1977 from the Rockefeller University in New York.

An internationally renowned biomedical scientist specializing in musculoskeletal biology and tissue regeneration, Professor Tuan has authored more than 550 research publications. His work covers both basic science and engineering, as well as translational and clinical applications. Prior to joining CUHK in 2016 as a distinguished visiting professor and the founding director of the Institute for Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine, he was distinguished professor of orthopaedic surgery and director of the Center for Cellular and Molecular Engineering in the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine.

Professor Tuan was elected to the fellowships of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering (2000), National Academy of Inventors (2017), the Chinese Association of Inventions (2018), the American Association for Anatomy (2019), the Orthopaedic Research Society (2021), and the Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine International Society (2021) for his accomplishments in innovation and translational research that bring significant impact on society.

 

Moderator: Dr Christopher Thomas
Director of Partnerships, Yidan Prize Foundation

Christopher Thomas is Director of Partnerships at the Yidan Prize Foundation and Social Entrepreneur in Residence at Stanford University’s Graduate School of Education. Before joining the Yidan Prize Foundation and Stanford University, he was the Advisor to the Education Global Practice at the World Bank. He has served in a range of corporate strategy and management roles at the World Bank Group, including Lead Strategy Officer, Advisor to the Managing Director, and Manager of human development programs in Asia and Africa. Dr Thomas played a key role in forging the World Bank’s contributions to the Sustainable Development Goals, United Nations agreements on Financing for Development, and partnerships with the IMF and multilateral development banks. Dr Thomas holds an M.A. in International Affairs from Johns Hopkins University and a PhD in Education from Stanford University.

 

Panel 4—Learning through Play: Global and China Perspectives

Professor Kathy Hirsh-Pasek
Stanley and Deborah Lefkowitz Professor of Psychology, Temple University
Senior Fellow, Brookings Institution

Kathy Hirsh-Pasek, a Professor of Psychology at Temple University and a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution was declared a “scientific entrepreneur” from the American Association of Psychology. Writing 16 books and 250+ publications, she served as President of the International Congress for Infant Studies and is on the Governing Board of the Society for Research in Child Development. Her Einstein Never Used Flashcards won the Book for a Better Life Award in 2003 with her Becoming Brilliant (2016) reaching the NYTimes Best Sellers List in education. Professor Hirsh-Pasek won awards from every psychological and educational society for her basic science and translational work designed to bridge basic science and educational impact.

A founding member of the Latin American School for Educational and Cognitive Neuroscience, she spearheaded a global network of scientists devoted to educational science. Co-founder of the global Learning Science Exchange Fellowship, she brings together scientists, journalists, policy makers and entertainers, to put learning science in the hands of educators. In 2021, she was elected as a member of the National Academy of Education. Her newest initiative Playful Learning Landscapes re-imagines cities and public squares as places with science infused designs that enhance academic and social opportunities. Hirsh-Pasek frequently comments for the press (eg NPR, NYT) and blogs for the Brookings Institution.

 

Dr Junjie Shang
Associate Professor, Graduate School of Education, Peking University

Junjie Shang once served as Vice Dean of Graduate School of Education. Currently, he is a tenured Associate Professor and serves as the Director of the Lab of Learning Sciences. Dr Shang is also the President of the China Educational Technology Association Professional Community on Digital Game-based Learning. His research interests include digital game-based learning, learning science and technology, educational technology leadership and policy. He has led many research projects funded by National Science Foundation of China, National Social Science Foundation of China, Beijing Social Science Foundation etc. Dr Shang has edited or authored more than 10 books and published more than 80 papers. He has won multiple awards such as “National Best Massive Open Online Courses”, “Best Textbooks Award in Beijing Municipal Education Commission”, “First-class Award for best-selling books In National College Press Association in China”, “First-class Award of Teaching in Beijing on Higher Education”, and “Peking University Ng Teng Fong/Sino Scholarship for Outstanding Youth”.

 

Professor Yang Rui
Associate Dean, Faculty of Education, The University of Hong Kong

Yang Rui is Professor and Associate Dean for Research at the Faculty of Education in the University of Hong Kong. With over 30 years of academic career in China, Australia, and Hong Kong, he has an impressive track record on research at the interface of Chinese and Western traditions in education. He has established his reputation among scholars in English and Chinese national languages in the fields of comparative and international education and Chinese higher education. Bridging the theoretical thrust of comparative education and the applied nature of international education, his research interests include education policy sociology, comparative and cross-cultural studies in education, international higher education, educational development in Chinese societies, and international politics in educational research. Professor Yang’s international reputation is evidenced by his extensive list of publications, research projects, invited keynote lectures in international and regional conferences, leadership in professional associations and membership in editorial boards of scholarly journals.

 

Dr Bo Stjerne Thomsen
Chair of Learning through Play, and Vice-President, The LEGO Foundation

Bo Stjerne Thomsen, PhD is the Chair of Learning through Play, Vice President, and member of the Executive Leadership Team at the LEGO Foundation. As Chair and senior expert on how children and adults learn through play, Dr Thomsen provides consultation at a bilateral, regional, and multilateral level to international partners and leaders. He is an awarded elite researcher by the Danish Ministry of Education & Science, and a visiting scholar at the MIT Media Lab, Tufts University and Harvard University, defining and developing the scientific basis of how children develop and learn through hands-on playful experiences.

Over the years, Dr Thomsen has held various leadership roles with the LEGO Group and LEGO Foundation including Director of the LEGO Learning Institute, Head of the Centre for Creativity, Play and Learning, and Global Head of Research. He has been advising international organizations like the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, World Economic Forum, World Innovation Forum for Education, and the UN General Assembly. Dr Thomsen works with more than 10 governments around the world on how to address the most critical issues of education and lifelong learning and is frequent contributor to international dialogues, research journals and media.

 

Moderator: Dr Zhaoli Meng
Research Advisor, Chen Yidan Foundation

Zhaoli Meng is a research advisor at the Chen Yidan Foundation. Prior to that, Dr Meng served as the Dean of JD Fintech Research Institute, the Chief Economist and Vice Dean of Tencent Research Institute, and Deputy Secretary of Tencent Foundation. She has also worked as the Director of Deloitte’s TMT Center of Excellence, Research Leader of Accenture Institute of High Performance, Chief Researcher of Samsung Economics Research Institute, and Assistant Professor at the Renmin University of China. She has over twenty years of research experience in the internet industry, fintech industry, and telecommunication industry. She led dozens of white papers about the development of China’s fintech industry, internet industry, and regulatory frameworks. She was invited to share her research about fintech and internet industries at top conferences, including IMF’s Statistical Forum, World Bank’s research seminar, and top universities, such as Oxford, Beijing University, Tsinghua University, and London School of Economics. She won the silver prize of the fourth World Chinese Science Popularization Writer with her book, Internet Changes China.