7 June 2022
Hong Kong SAR
The Yidan Prize Foundation and The Brookings Center for Universal Education Present an Event Series on the Future of Education in the 21st Century

The Yidan Prize Foundation, the global philanthropic foundation behind the world’s highest education accolade, is collaborating with the Brookings Center for Universal Education to present a three-part event series—exploring emerging topics in education that are likely to have deep implications for decades to come.

With the world heading towards pandemic recovery and a myriad of socio-political challenges on the horizon, now is the time to chart out a blueprint for educators, academics, and policymakers to discuss and address issues, and seize opportunities in education.

The online events are bringing together Yidan Prize laureates, members of the Yidan Council of Luminaries, and education experts from The Brookings Institution. They will shed light on how to ensure refugee children can access education; bring the best education practices into the metaverse; and move beyond the false dichotomy of foundational learning versus a breadth of social, emotional, and cognitive skills in the return to schooling post-COVID-19.

The event series will kick off on 21 June 2022 with Part 1: Ukraine and beyond: Lessons in refugee education. It is open for all to join. Please register for the webinar here.

More details on the three-part series:

PART 1: Refugee education

The war on Ukraine has disrupted the education of millions—as more than half of Ukrainian children have left their homes, and over 1,800 education institutions have been damaged. The next months will determine how many of these children can access education in their host communities across Europe.

Moderated by Maysa Jalbout, Non-resident Fellow, Center for Universal Education, Brookings Institution, this event will discuss the wide-reaching impact of the ongoing crisis in Ukraine on refugee children, the critical roles of teachers and society in educational responses, and insights and lessons from Afghan, Rohingya, and Syrian refugee crises.


  • David Edwards, General Secretary, Education International
  • Viktoriia Gnap, Co-Founder and President of Unbreakable Ukraine Foundation
  • Zarlasht Halaimzai, Founder and CEO of Amna (formerly Refugee Trauma Initiative)
  • Erum Mariam, Executive Director of BRAC Institute of Educational Development

WHEN: 21 June 2022, 9:30–10:30am EDT (GMT-4)

WHERE: Register for the event here

PART 2: Education meets the metaverse: The promise and the worry

When education trails technology, the technology rather than educators defines what counts as educational opportunity. This is largely what happened when ‘educational’ apps designed for use on smartphones and tablets meant for adults were introduced to children. Today, as the metaverse infrastructure is still under construction, researchers, educators, policymakers, and digital designers have a chance to lead the way rather than get caught in the undertow.

Moderated by Laurie Segall, Co-founder and Executive Producer, Dot Dot Dot Media, this event will convene edtech leaders and educators to discuss and debate the role of metaverse in the future of education to chart a path for bringing the best educational practices into the metaverse.


  • Anant Agarwal, Founder and CEO, edX; Chief Open Education Officer, 2U; Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, MIT; 2018 Yidan Prize for Education Development Laureate
  • Kathy Hirsh-Pasek, Senior Fellow, Center for Universal Education, Brookings Institution; Stanley and Debra Lefkowitz Faculty Fellow, Department of Psychology, Temple University
  • Rebecca Kantar, Head of Education, Roblox
  • Simran Mulchandani, Founder, Project Rangeet
  • Kevin Clark, Children’s Media Producer and Consultant

WHEN: 28 June 2022, 10–11am EDT (GMT-4)

WHERE: Register for the event here

PART 3: Foundational learning in the return to schooling post-COVID-19

Details to be released closer to the date here.

Viewers can submit questions via email to or via Twitter at #BrookingsYidanPrize.

All sessions will be recorded and available for playback. Please visit here for more information.