A diverse array of experts from leading universities, research firms and nonprofit organizations met at Northwestern University to explore how research findings may address inequities and improve practice in education on May 23-24 for the Yidan Prize Conference Series: The Americas.
Themed "The Future of Evidence and Innovation in Education," the two-day conference explored the future of educational innovation and the role evidence plays in implementing educational ideals.
"So many people share the dream of making the world a better place through education, and the vision and commitment of the Yidan Prize is allowing us to take real action," said Northwestern University President Morton Schapiro, who offered opening remarks at the conference.
"By establishing the world's largest prize in education, by recognizing the best work in the field and by creating a network of regional conferences to build upon the work of its laureates, the foundation is improving the quality of education on a truly global scale, and so we are honored to co-host the 2019 Yidan Prize Conference Series in the Americas," President Schapiro said.
Founder of the Yidan Prize Dr. Charles Chen Yidan touched on educational innovation in his speech at the conference.
I see huge potential for educators to benefit and be inspired from some fruitful exchanges and collaborations with the Yidan Prize Laureates and high-quality nominees."
He added: "As we engage much deeper innovative ideas on how education should look like in the future, exchanges of thoughts and collaborations at a global level would become increasingly important. I hope the Yidan Prize can be the platform that facilitates inspired dialogues."
The Yidan Prize is the world's largest prize in education. The 2018 laureates -- Larry Hedges and Anant Agarwal, Laureates of the Yidan Prize for Education Research and Yidan Prize for Education Development, respectively -- also took the opportunity to share their insights on the issues.
In addition, the conference saw robust and fruitful discussions on the following topics: "Synthesizing Research Evidence," "Increasing Demand for Research Evidence," "Expanding Access to Education," and "Evaluating Technological Innovation."
This year, the Yidan Prize Conference Series will visit three continents to explore new directions for research and highlight the work of the Yidan Prize Laureates. In March, the Europe edition was held successfully at Cambridge University, followed by The Americas edition at Northwestern May 23-24.
The Asia Pacific edition will take place in Hong Kong on December 3, 2019.
To learn more about Yidan Prize and the Yidan Prize Conference Series, please visit www.yidanprize.org.
About the Yidan Prize
Founded in 2016 by Dr. Charles Chen Yidan, a core founder of Tencent, the Yidan Prize has a mission of creating a better world through education. It consists of two awards, the Yidan Prize for Education Research and the Yidan Prize for Education Development.
Yidan Prize Laureates each receives a gold medal and a total sum of HK$30 million (around US$3.9 million), half of which is a cash prize while the other half is a project fund. To ensure transparency and sustainability, the prize is managed by Yidan Prize Foundation and governed by an independent trust with an endowment of HK$2.5 billion (around US$323 million).
Through a series of initiatives, the prize aims to establish a platform for the global community to engage in conversation around education and to play a role in education philanthropy.