Michael Moe (@michaelmoe) is a co-founder of GSV, a fund, advisory and incubator driven by the “boom of big ideas” that is transforming every industry from healthcare to communication, transportation, energy and now global education.

Moe’s 2020 Vision (a book and microsite) is that to restore the fabric of the United States everybody needs an equal opportunity to participate in the future. The vision is based on a dozen megatrends creating new opportunities (read a summary of the report).

GSV has been sending around daily EdTech clips for years. A few months ago they added lifelong learning and talent development to round out news on the “pre-K to gray” spectrum of learning and talent technology and innovation.

In July we noticed a big uptick in the number of daily stories about human resources and talent startups–and most of them included artificial intelligence to improve how we “obtain, train and retain talent,” said Moe. We talked to Moe about what is happening and what it means for education.

Podcast Highlights

  • You can’t separate learning from careers anymore–you need to keep learning to earn. Access to learning is key to provide an equal opportunity to participate in the future.
  • Startup activity is signaling that important things are going on–there were 400 deals in the HR and talent space in the last year. AI changes the game. The capabilities these start-ups support will make previous HR practices look primitive.
  • In pre-employment, AI-powered startups are changing the way we recruit. Smart software helps find the best candidates in a systematic and predictable way.
  • Smart HR is good for diversity in hiring because it eliminates bias. (A great example is that when symphonies moved to blind auditions, the number of women hired quickly jumped to about half.)
  • Training used to be a cost center; now learning is a key differentiator for the most important companies in the world.
  • Chatbots are getting better at customer and employee service.
  • AI is powering better personalized learning. Most students benefit from adaptive learning software today, and soon it will be incorporated into most learning platforms.
  • There is more “invisible learning” embedded in software products these days.

In Education

  • We’ll see radical changes in next five years but we won’t recognize what happens–old HR systems and practices will die off like landline phones.
  • In addition to making it easier for applicants to find the right job and for schools to find the best possible staff members, AI-powered startups should provide better teacher substitute systems, more efficient employee scheduling systems and improved employee service from HR.

Innovation is accelerating in Silicon Valley, around the U.S. and around the world. Moe is bullish for the world: “There’s never been greater opportunity to make a difference.”

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