Education leaders will meet in Scottsdale, AZ April 16-18, 2012 for the Education Innovation Summit 12, hosted by Arizona State University (ASU) SkySong, to discuss major trends in personalized and adaptive learning, new models for delivering education, and traditional degrees in the context of those new models.

“Skysong is the physical manifestation of ASU’s commitment to be a truly innovative university working with edtech entrepreneurs and innovators in ways that will transform learning,” says Phil Regier, Executive Vice Provost and Dean of ASU Online and Extended Campus. “Holding the summit at Skysong reinforces ASU’s leadership role in ed innovation, and the greater Phoenix area’s position as the gateway to developing stronger public-private ed partnerships.”

The summit offers more than 100 company presentations, which are primarily edtech startups, and 18 panels this year. Featured speakers include Former Governor Jeb Bush, CEO Reed Hastings of Netflix and Chairman Michael Milken of The Milken Institute. This year’s summit will have an increased focus on scaling challenges in the K-12 education space with the help of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation sponsored discussions.

“Attendees should expect a fast-paced, intense and multidimensional set of panels, company presentations and keynote addresses,” says Regier. “For an edtech startup company attending the summit for the first time, it might feel a bit like a three-ring circus, because there are so many interesting conversations happening all at once.”

The summit showcases an intense focus on investment and entrepreneurship in the edtech sector, which is built into the DNA of the event, says Regier. “I think most public institutions are feeling pressure to deliver efficiently, and many are under pressure to provide lower-cost options that are currently not available. Other institutions are positioning to offer open education opportunities,” he adds. “Both trends are compelling from institutional and consumer perspectives.”

“It certainly doesn’t look anything like a typical academic conference,” he adds. “The reality is that as a country we cannot improve education on a transformative scale without public-private collaboration. Each sector has its own strengthens and weaknesses. The trick is alignment. In many ways, a key offering of the summit is the opportunity for strategic alignment with a key public or private partner.”

ASU SkySong first developed the idea for the Education Innovation Summit in 2009 after a group of investors interested in a high concentration of education innovation in the Phoenix area. Uncovering a demand for forums around entrepreneurs, investors, educators, researchers and more working in the education market, ASU SkySong held its first summit in the Spring of 2010. Three years later, the event attracts a large number serious and respected thought leaders.

Follow summit happenings on Twitter @edinnovatenet and #eisummit. Visit the summit web site for blog posts and news http://edinnovation.asu.edu/. Get updates at Facebook.com/edinnovatenet.

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