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24 May 2019
Evanston, IL, US
Yidan Prize Conference Series: The Americas 2019

A diverse array of experts from leading universities, research firms and nonprofit organizations met at Northwestern University to explore how research findings may address inequities and improve practice in education on 23 to 24 May for the Yidan Prize Conference Series: The Americas.

Themed “The future of evidence and innovation in education,” the two day conference explored the future of educational innovation and the role evidence plays in implementing educational ideals.

“So many people share the dream of making the world a better place through education, and the vision and commitment of the Yidan Prize is allowing us to take real action,” said Northwestern University President Morton Schapiro, who offered opening remarks at the conference.

“By establishing the world’s largest prize in education, by recognizing the best work in the field and by creating a network of regional conferences to build upon the work of its laureates, the foundation is improving the quality of education on a truly global scale, and so we are honored to co-host the 2019 Yidan Prize Conference Series in the Americas,” President Schapiro said.

Dr Charles Chen Yidan, Founder of the Yidan Prize, touched on educational innovation in his speech at the conference.

“The time is ripe for educators across the world to learn from each other, and realize education innovation in our own country,” Dr Chen said. “At the Yidan Prize Conference Series: The Americas, we have the privilege to learn from the Yidan Prize Laureates 2018. I see huge potential for educators to benefit and be inspired from some fruitful exchanges and collaborations with the Yidan Prize Laureates and high-quality nominees.”

He added: “As we engage much deeper innovative ideas on how education should look like in the future, exchanges of thoughts and collaborations at a global level would become increasingly important. I hope the Yidan Prize can be the platform that facilitates inspired dialogues.”

The Yidan Prize is the world’s largest prize in education. The 2018 laureates – Larry Hedges and Anant Agarwal, laureates of the Yidan Prize for Education Research and Yidan Prize for Education Development, respectively – also took the opportunity to share their insights on the issues. In addition, the conference saw robust and fruitful discussions on the following topics: ‘Synthesizing research evidence’, ‘Increasing demand for research evidence’, ‘Expanding access to education’, and ‘Evaluating technological innovation’.

This year, the Yidan Prize Conference Series will visit three continents to explore new directions for research and highlight the work of the Yidan Prize Laureates. In March, the Europe edition was held successfully at Cambridge University, followed by The Americas edition at Northwestern 23 to 24 May. The Asia-Pacific edition will take place in Hong Kong on 3 December 2019.

Welcoming remark by Dr Charles Chen Yidan, Founder of the Yidan Prize at the Yidan Prize Conference Series: The Americas
Welcoming remark by Northwestern University President Morton Schapiro at the Yidan Prize Conference Series: The Americas
Keynote address by Wendy Kopp, CEO and Co-Founder, Teach for All at the Yidan Prize Conference Series: The Americas
The two 2018 Yidan Prize Laureates, Professor Larry Hedges and Professor Anant Agarwal exchange insights with educators at the Yidan Prize Conference Series: The Americas 2019