Nordic EdTech News #7 : 2019-11-25

Your Week 46 & 47 update from the Nordic & Baltic EdTech ecosystems

It was great to meet so many subscribers and supporters of Nordic EdTech News at XcitED in Helsinki last week. It’s a brilliant showcase of the very best practice from across the Nordic and Baltic EdTech ecosystems. That’s certainly true of all of the finalists in the 2019 Nordic Edtech Awards, which I was delighted to help judge.

The finalists were:

Eventually, following a round of high-quality pitches and after much deliberation, the judges selected Mussila as the winner. Congratulations to Margrét and team! (Full details here)

XcitED itself was full of compelling EdTech insights with great panels, great speakers and most importantly powerful EdTech innovation that’s designed to improve outcomes for learners. (Follow #XcitED19 across social media to get a flavour of the day and topics covered).

On that theme, news that Sweden's first national testbed for educational technology has received funding is also particularly welcome. This will be invaluable in bringing together teachers, students and EdTech companies to develop high-quality digital learning materials. A uniquely Nordic approach! Read the press release here (Swedish) and get involved here.

PS - Where possible, links are provided in English, but opening links in and translating via Google Chrome should help non-native speakers!

Regional news

  • Atomico have released their definitive ‘State of European Tech 2019’ survey. So much to talk about here - a genuine must-read. (Link)

  • Brighteye Ventures publish their fifth EdTech Marketing Guide. This one looks at Marketing Automation, written by Ellis Crosby @ Blinkist. (Link)

  • Celebrating the #NordicMade ecosystem at Slush 2019. Great stuff! (Link)

  • Congrats to everyone included in the Nordic Inspiring Fifty List - a strong EdTech presence here.

  • Nordic 9 summarise the regional investment market for October 2019. (Link)

  • Nordic Innovation publish new study highlighting the drivers of growth and barriers to scaling for Nordic companies. (Link)

Global trends

  • Amazon launches new marketplace for teachers to sell their own teaching resources online. (Link)

  • Apple expands and updates its global ‘Everyone Can Code’ programme (Link) and launches stinging attack on the use of Chromebooks in education. (Link)

  • Two big European EdTech deals to report - Perlego raise $9m Series A for its textbook subscription service (Link) and Lalilo raise €5 million to help children improve their reading skills. (Link)

  • New research confirms that educators overwhelmingly trust other educators when it comes to judging and recommending EdTech products. (Link)

  • Fascinating EdSurge webinar - ‘How Global EdTech Startups Scale and Succeed.’ (Link)

  • The rationale behind the launch of EduSpaze, the first-ever EdTech accelerator in South-East Asia. (Link)

News from Denmark

  • Problems continue for new Aula network for schools as the bill looks set to increase. (Den, Eng)

  • CanopyLAB highlight the enormous potential of Natural Language Processing (NLP) in learning. (Link)

  • As we’ve previously referenced, Danish robotics is booming! Revenue forecast to more than double to €7BN total and sector employment will triple. (Den, Eng)

  • Dansk Industri seek an increased focus on IT careers and IT education. (Den, Eng) as Dansk IT sets up a network for students entering the world of work. (Den, Eng)

  • The Ministry of Children and Education allocate DKK 9.5 million to strengthen elearning in adult, continuing and further education between 2019 and 2021. (Den, Eng)

  • Educators can now access tools and learning resources via the national learning portal to support cyber security and digital literacy. (Den, Eng)

  • The LEGO Foundation and HundrED announce partnership and funding to encourage educators to unleash learners’ creativity. (Link)

  • New KUBO Coding++ set launched (Link) and products reviewed by Flipped Classroom Tutorials (Link).

  • Great feedback from Shape Robotics’ workshop in Berlin (Link) as they plan another workshop in Farum. (Link)

News from Estonia

  • Timo Timmi, Co-founder of 99math, argues the case for changing teaching and learning to save the world (Link), and promotes their Math Game Day on 5th Dec (EU) and 11th Dec (US). (Link)

  • Estonia has joined the Finnish-led initiative to educate at least 1% of the population about artificial intelligence. Tallinn University of Technology has brought one of the most popular online courses in the world – “The Elements of AI” – to Estonia. (Course, announcement)

  • DreamApply announce updates to their advisor tool functionality. (Link)

  • Garage 48 sum up the EdTech Hackathon at Startup Week Tallinn 2019. (Link)

  • Edvisor Finland review their work with Startup Week’s EdTech elements. (Link)

  • Estonia was the focus of SeedTable’s fiftieth newsletter. (Link)

  • EU-Startups.com ranks Estonia in the top-three best European countries to launch a startup. (Link)

  • Short video arguing why Estonia is the country of the future. (Link)

News from Finland

  • Aalto University has created ‘Starting Up’, an online course to teach would-be entrepreneurs the basic skills of setting up a company. (Link)

  • Finnish companies (Fun Academy, HEI Schools, HY+, Kide Science, Kisakallio, and Otava) participated in an early education roadshow in China. (Chinese)

  • Great programme and line-up at Tiera’s Digital Learning Development Day this Friday. Details and sign up here.

  • HEI Schools and their Saudi partner expand their partnership in Jeddah and Dammam. (Link)

  • Latest Finnish AI ​​Landscape list published (Link) and the Finnish Education Minister outlines on 'AI: Decoded' how she wants to use AI to upskill Finland’s workforce. (Link)

  • Kide Science have been busy in China delivering keynotes about playful STEAM education at iDEE, CEIE and GET Summit.

  • Kitsat sign agreement at Slush with Chinese ‘Future Schools’. (Fin, Eng)

  • New Nordic School is now working with Podar Education and other Indian partners to open schools across major cities like Mumbai and Delhi. (Link)

  • Mehackit Atelier is nominated for the world's best digital solution at World Summit Awards. (Fin, Eng)

  • Roybi Robot is listed as one of the 100 most promising startups to watch in 2019 by CNBC (Link) and are included in Time’s list of the Best Inventions of 2019! (Link) Congratulations!

  • School Day outline how data empowers educators to make better decisions (Link) and how collaboration with universities lies at the heart of their offer. (Link)

  • Great piece in Sifted about how Slush helped build the thriving Finnish tech ecosystem. (Link)

  • United Nations Technology Innovation Lab announce an impact accelerator programme for EdTech startups with xEdu. Applications open in May. (Link)

News from Iceland

  • Interesting review of the Icelandic startup ecosystem from FiBAN. (Link)

  • Kara Connect secures ISK 160 million in new funding round. (Ice, Eng)

  • If you’d like to learn more about Mussila (see Nordic Edtech Awards above) then here’s a great intro. (Link)

  • New research finds that Icelanders are reading more and listening to more audiobooks. (Link)

  • Latest version of the Partial Credit podcast recorded at #utis2019. (Link)

News from Latvia

  • Exonicus win the 500 Startups accelerator competition at the Digital Freedom Festival. (Latvian)

  • The annual Latvian Information and Communication Technology Association (LIKTA) conference takes place on 5 December. This year's theme is Lifelong Learning. (Link)

  • Superheroes on the Internet – a partnership between State Police and Net-Safe Latvia is identified as a leading example of positive digital citizenship. (Link)

  • Strong education presence in student startups participating in the University of Latvia (UL) Student Business Incubator Program. (Link)

News from Lithuania

  • BitDegree identified as leading example of the role of blockchain in education. (Link)

  • Detailed analysis by Dealroom.co of the Lithuanian startup and venture capital ecosystem. (Link)

News from Norway

  • Significant changes proposed for schools in Norway from the start of the next school year. They will prioritise digital learning tools in all subjects and offer digital skills boosts for teachers. (Nor, Eng)

  • Positive reaction to the inclusion of programming and algorithmic thinking in several subjects. Links to new curricula here in Nor and Eng.

  • Bergen Municipality has bought 300 drones to support delivery of this new curricula. (Nor, Eng - paywall)

  • Ongoing debate in national press about use of technology in schools. (Nor)

  • Nearly 40,000 students signed up for Kodtimen - a coding lesson as part of Hour of Code, which is planned for Week 50. Find out more here.

  • SETT takes place this week in Lillestrøm. (Link)

  • Sponsored article about the use of 3D printers in Norwegian schools. (Nor, Eng)

News from Sweden

  • The Swedish Edtech Industry enters the debate on EdTech in schools and powerfully argues that it delivers significant added educational value. (Swe, Eng)

  • New support for schools when procuring IT and EdTech also launched by the Swedish Edtech Industry. (Swe)

  • Haldor came second in the Comet Competition, a Ingram Micro startup initiative for Independent Software Providers in the Nordics. (Swe, Eng)

  • Karlstad University win funding for a new study on the role and impact of learning platforms. (Swe, Eng)

  • Kognity release their talk from the Top 50 Innovators event 'Why Technology is Needed to Solve the World’s Greatest Scaling Challenge – Education'. (Link)

  • Lärande Group celebrate their 20th Anniversary. (Swe, Eng)

  • Useful insights from Loops Education on learning and development from industry experts. (Swe, Eng)

  • Sana Labs announce a new partnership with Becker. (Link)

  • Soundtrap have tied up with Future DJs to support UK schools and students to realise their musical creativity. (Link)

  • Excellent latest ‘Spaningen’ newsletter from RISE (Research Institutes of Sweden) and well worth subscribing to! (Swedish)

  • Tekniska Museum’s Robots exhibition stimulates huge demand for programming courses from schools. (Swe, Eng)

Thanks for reading and see you again in two weeks!

Best regards, Jonathan

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