Cambridge Baltic Conference 2014 – Innovation in Education

Following the success and positive feedback of last year’s Cambridge Baltic Conference, this year’s event will focus on innovation in education.

The first Cambridge Baltic Conference took place last year and attracted over 300 guests and a number of extraordinary speakers, including Valdas Adamkus, the President of Lithuania, and Siim Kallas, the Vice-President of the European Commission. The conference received great attention from the media and key issues relating to science, politics and business in the Baltic States were discussed, which also inspired the theme for this year’s conference: education.

This year’s conference comes back to the objectives set by the event in 2013 and aims to depict new challenges and provide new insights for and from the Baltic States. Spread over two days, 10-11th October in the historic debate chamber of the world-famous Cambridge Union Society, the conference will kick off with a day of interactive workshops designed for and by university students, as well as by professional experts and Google. One of the missions of the conference is to directly empower those that are in education, rather than leaving these issues in the hands of those who have long left their institutions of schooling.In addition to leadership training, the workshops will test and develop students’ debating and public speaking skills.

On the Saturday, several four different panels will debate best practices in higher education, entrepreneurship and innovation. The conference will open with a keynote speech from Dr Roberts Ķīlis, former Latvian Minister of Education and Science, on “Skills versus Knowledge in Secondary Education” panel. In today’s graduate market, few fail to notice that employers are putting emphasis on what they call transferable skills, which include problem solving, critical thinking and interpersonal communication. Undoubtedly, they increasingly prioritise these over specific subject knowledge. The first session will address this phenomenon in relation to the current and future education and work situation in the Baltic States. This will be followed by a keynote speech by Maive Rute, Director at Directorate-General for Science and Innovation at the European Commission. While the second session will focus on “Best Practices in Higher Education” and raise discussion on what university-level education entails in both the Baltic and States and UK; the penultimate topic “Does Education Foster Entrepreneurship?” will question whether academic degrees are even necessary for successful business men and women such as Bill Gates and the like. The conference shall culminate with the closing session, which looks towards the future with “Future Trends and Innovations in the Field of Education” and attempts to speculate, where current methods of teaching and learning will take the young people of today and tomorrow.
Cambridge Baltic Conference picture

image courtesy of Cambridge Baltic Conference 2014

It is hoped that the aforementioned topics will encourage dialogue between generations and segments of the public, particularly between students and those that direct their education. There will be numerous opportunities at the two-day event for students, thinkers, entrepreneurs and politicians to connect, create and discuss.

The conference is organised entirely by student members of Baltic Countries’ societies at Cambridge University, which bring together over a hundred young and motivated people. Many of them will have had previous experience in organising and managing other projects and their dedication to the conference is a testament to their motivation to take initiative and become innovators in education.

Please see http://cambridgebalticconference.eu/2014/ for more information.

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