Nordic EdTech News #6 : 2019-11-11

Your Week 44 & 45 update from the Nordic & Baltic EdTech ecosystems

When launching Nordic EdTech News, my ambition was always to feature the people who influence and drive the agenda across this fascinating ecosystem. I’m therefore delighted that today’s newsletter includes an exclusive interview with Antti Korhonen, CEO of xEdu. You can read the full interview here, including the news of the collaboration between xEdu and EduSpaze in setting up the first-ever EdTech accelerator in South-East Asia. (Link)

I’m also pleased to support the work of the Nordic Edtech Alliance by highlighting the the finalists for the Nordic Edtech Award 2019. The final takes place at XcitED in Helsinki on Wednesday 20 November and the finalists are:

Denmark – PeaQs by Artventure
Finland – Elias Robot by Elias Robot
Norway – MagiMake by Ludenso
Sweden – Humly (Studentvikarie Sverige AB)
Iceland – TBC.


Excited about the future of education and learning?
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20 November, the day before Slush 2019, join us at Otaniemi Senior High to get #XcitED!

Tickets here!


Regional news

  • Finalists for the 2020 Bett Awards have been announced. Lots of local interest here! (Link)

  • Strong Nordic presence in ‘Student Robotics 2019: An Educator's Guide’ from EdTech Digest. (Link)

  • Danish and Finnish students excel in international computer literacy tests. (Link)

  • EdTech businesses from Denmark, Norway and Finland are identified as HundrED 2020 innovations. (Link)

  • National winners have been announced at Nordic Startup Awards. (Link)

  • Lessons that the US can learn from Finland: less stress and standardized testing, more well-being and joy. (Link)

Global trends

  • Brilliant interview with Luis von Ahn, Co-founder and CEO of Duolingo. (Link)

  • Latest Gallup Education research shows shows the impact of creativity on learning (Link). Excellent summary from Apple’s Dominic Liechti here.

  • Italy becomes the first country to make study of global heating and human influence on natural resources compulsory in state schools. (Link)

  • Reach Capital’s BlendED blog looks at the global EdTech funding landspace. (Link)

  • Provocative report from the Varkey Foundation arguing that EdTech policy needs a ‘critical update’. (Link)

News from Denmark

  • DanBAN female founders pitch event - 27 November in Copenhagen). (Link)

  • ITWatch report dissatisfaction amongst Danish primary school teachers with new Aula network. (Link - paywall)

  • Labster launch their latest simulation on bacterial cell structures. (Link)

  • Tips from Esben Jørgensen, President of LEGO Education on how to help
    children to build confidence in learning. (Link)

  • ICYMI - KUBO argue the case for, and link between, coding and hands-on learning. (Link)

  • Great coverage of Shape Robotics’ move into US classrooms. (Link - paywall)

News from Estonia

  • BeED are shortlisted for a Bett Award and participate in the Petrosains Science Festival in Malaysia. (Link)

  • Fascinating review of Estonia’s digital transformation by Siim Sikkut. (Link)

  • Märt Aro, Co-Founder DreamApply, is part of ACA’s ‘From physical to virtual? Internationalising higher education in the digital age’ event (22 Nov). (Link).

  • Guaana celebrate five years since their launch. Congratulations! (Link)

  • EdTech Founders, including 99math, took part in a discussion at JCI World Congress. (Link)

  • Great EdTech event at Startup Week Tallinn 2019 featuring Edvisor Finland, Eduten and Lingvist. Don’t miss this one - tickets here.

  • There’s also an EdTech hackathon that week and Garage48, Startup Estonia and Innove are also looking for students to get involved (15-17 November). (Link)

  • Well worth subscribing to Startup Estonia’s excellent EdTech newsletter. (Link)

News from Finland

  • Great summary of Finland’s Startup and VC Ecosystem from C2 Ventures. (Link)

  • Education, games and music combine for Aviv Ben-Yehuda, CEO of Big Ear Games. (Link)

  • Elias Robot ran a robot hackathon for Romanian and Finnish teachers as part of Helsinki Education Week. (Link)

  • Fun Academy deliver train the trainer sessions with Vietnamese teachers. (Link)

  • Funzi highlight their expertise in mobile learning. (Link)

  • Grib outline educational benefits associated with AR. (Link)

  • Exciting announcements during Helsinki Education Week including a new Phenomenon Based Learning tool (Link) and new support for international education companies. (Link)

  • HEI Schools announce agreement to expand in Saudi Arabia (Link) and CEO Milla Kokko explains the secret behind their success. (Link)

  • Kide Science attend Vision of International School Conference in China and announce that their paper ‘Playing with science: Manifestation of scientific play in early science inquiry’ has been accepted for AERA 2020

  • Lyfta sponsor UK Diverse Educators Event. (Link)

  • New Nordic School host ‘Transforming Learning - The Nordic Way’ event in Mumbai, India (Link)

  • School Day reveal sneak preview of their Jan 2020 release (Link) and are selected in the Slush 100 pitching competition. (Link)

  • How TinyApp boosts early childhood education. (Fin, Eng)

News from Iceland

  • Arion Bank pulls support from Startup Reykjavík. (Ice, Eng)

  • Check out #utis2019 to get a detailed insight from last weekend’s Icelandic EdTech event. It’s an amazing teacher-led community sharing loads of best practice!

News from Latvia

  • The announcement that Change Ventures Fund II had launched was widely reported. They’re seeking to back the best Baltic founders with “..Silicon Valley-style venture capital at pre-seed and seed”. (Link)

  • Edurio publish latest UK education case-study. (Link)

  • Winners of the “Mēs esam ideāli” student programming competition have been announced. (Latvian)

  • Teams of Latvian university students start their engagement with the University of Latvia Student Business Incubator program. Runs until summer 2020. (Lat)

  • Uzdevumi create bespoke lessons for Latvian national holidays. (Lat, Eng)

News from Lithuania

  • BitDegree celebrate a busy and spooky October (Link) and announce new gamified features on their platform. (Link)

  • Comprehensive map of Lithuanian start-up ecosystem has been launched by Startup Lithuania. (Link)

News from Norway

  • itslearning CEO, Arne Bergby, celebrates and reinforces the business’ Bergen roots as the city prepares to turn 950 years old in 2020. (Eng)

  • Further detail emerges about Kahoot’s new investors (Nor, Eng) and detailed analysis from Shifter of their latest user / subscriber numbers. (Nor, Eng)

  • Norwegian students build a flight simulator. WOW! (Nor, Eng)

  • SINTEF publish preliminary report on use of technology in Norwegian schools and kindergartens. (Nor, Eng)

  • Stavanger Municipality stops using any applications for communicating with parents. (Nor, Eng)

News from Sweden

  • Atea wins contract to supply hardware to Stockholm City Schools. (Swe, Eng)

  • Amazing Digi5 coding and technology event this Saturday (16/11) in Stockholm. Get involved!

  • DigiExam and Skolon announce partnership. (Swe, Eng)

  • imagiLabs win EIT Digital Alumni Foundation 2019 Startup contest (Link) and highlight the impact of their workshop programme for girls. (Link)

  • Kognity launch new e-book to support new teachers. (Link)

  • Learnster raises SEK 6 million from Lars Lindgren and existing investors (Swe, Eng).

  • Natur & Kultur works with subject matter experts to launch new online course ‘To counter racism in preschool and school’. (Swe, Eng)

  • Sana Labs highlight the effectiveness of personalized learning in language learning (Link) and professional education. (Link)

  • Skolon win major procurement deal with Telge to supply e-learning resources to municipalities across Sweden. (Swe, Eng)

  • Spotify Kids will beta launch in Ireland before global roll out. (Link)

  • Studentvikarie changes name to Humly (Swe, Eng) and joins Swedish Edtech Industry. (Swe)

  • Sweden included in international research which found that education systems with more positive professional support for teachers also deliver higher student achievement. (Link)

  • Volvo Construction Equipment support students to develop digital skills for ‘Industry 4.0’. (Swe, Eng)

Thanks for reading and see you again in two weeks!

Best regards, Jonathan

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