Sugata Mitra Keynote Speaker

  • World-leading pioneer of a new approach to education
  • TED Prize Winner
  • Founder of "School In The Cloud"

Sugata Mitra's Biography

TED Prize winner Sugata Mitra is at the forefront of a new approach to education which challenges how we teach today’s children in a technological age.

He retired in 2019 as Professor of Educational Technology at Newcastle University, UK and previously a Visiting Professor at MIT in the US.

Sugata is currently working on the School in the Cloud, which is the culmination of over a decade of research and observations from all over the world. The School in the Cloud is learning at the edge of chaos – a community, place and experience to discover and explore children’s learning as a self-organising system.

From his earliest experiments while working at NIIT in Delhi with the Hole in the Wall project, through to setting up SOLEs (self organised learning environments), Sugata discovered that children’s innate sense of learning is magnified when they are given the freedom to explore the internet in small groups.

Children in these environments, regardless of who they are or what language they speak, can competently search for answers to ‘big questions’, drawing rational, logical conclusions from their research. These are questions far ahead of what is expected of them in their school curriculum.

In 1999 Sugata and his colleagues at NIIT made a hole in a wall bordering an urban slum in Delhi, installed an internet-connected PC, and left to see what happened. Almost immediately, children from the slum began playing with the computer and in the process taught each other how to use it and get online.

This experiment, which inspired the book ‘Slumdog Millionaire’ that went on to become the Oscar winning film of 2009, was replicated in other parts of India, both urban and rural, with similar results.

It challenged some of the key assumptions of formal education, demonstrating that, even in the absence of any direct input from a teacher, an environment that stimulates curiosity could result in learning through self-instruction and peer-shared knowledge.

However, his research has shown that it’s not simply a case of taking teachers out of the equation: children in remote areas often perform poorly at school because they do not have access to good teaching.

As a result of further research, which showed the importance of an encouraging adult in these circumstances, Sugata put out a plea for retired teachers in the UK to come forward to interact with children in India via Skype. As a result, the “Granny Cloud” was born.

Read More

Videos of Sugata Mitra

Build A School In The Cloud (2013)
Build A School In The Cloud (2013)
The Future Of Learning (2015)
The Future Of Learning (2015)
Q&A With Sugata Mitra (2014)
Q&A With Sugata Mitra (2014)

Check Sugata Mitra's speaking availability and fees

Interested in booking Sugata Mitra to speak at an event? Please provide your details and we’ll get in touch within 24 hours.

    View our related Speakers

    Marcus Orlovsky Speaker
    Exclusive
    Marcus Orlovsky
    Social Entrepreneur and expert on leadership and change
    Craig Foster Speaker
    Exclusive
    Craig Foster
    Academy Award Winning Documentary Filmmaker, My Octopus Teacher
    Evy Poumpouras Speaker
    Exclusive
    Evy Poumpouras
    Former Special Agent of the United States Secret Service
    Wendy Searle Speaker
    Exclusive
    Wendy Searle
    Adventurer, mother of four - skied solo & unsupported to the South Pole
    Dr. Kathy Sullivan Speaker
    Exclusive
    Dr. Kathy Sullivan
    Astronaut, Explorer & Most Vertical Person in the World
    Elif Shafak Speaker
    Elif Shafak Speaker
    Exclusive
    Elif Shafak
    Insightful and inspirational speaker on issues of equality, identity, new humanism, spirituality and geopolitics internationally.
    Darnell Moore Speaker
    Exclusive
    Darnell Moore
    Director of Inclusion Strategy for Content & Marketing, Netflix
    Mark Pattison Speaker
    Exclusive
    Mark Pattison
    Former NFL player, successful entrepreneur and mountaineer
    Ben Williams Speaker
    Exclusive
    Ben Williams
    Former Royal Marine Commando
    Johnny Mercer Speaker
    Johnny Mercer Speaker
    Exclusive
    Johnny Mercer
    Member of Parliament, Veterans’ Minister, Afghanistan Veteran and best-selling author