12 December 2023 at 10:00 am

EdTech famil programme provides eyes on New Zealand for innovation

Over two weeks from 6-17 November, Education New Zealand Manapou ki te Ao (ENZ) arranged a market immersion programme for several exporting NZ EdTech’s across three Southeast Asian countries. The purpose of the visit was to raise awareness of technology and innovation education from New Zealand as well as gain a better understanding of the education landscape and export opportunity in the region. 

Stands WTB
EdTech delegates catching up with the team of Writers Toolbox on their stand at EduTech Asia Singapore.

The programme included visits to Singapore, Viet Nam and Indonesia by a New Zealand delegation that included nine companies. The nine companies had a diverse range of education expertise, products and services from cutting edge Neuroscience for early childhood education to delivering TV-style drama series for English language education young adults.  Six core companies participated across the three counties - Language fuel, Neurofrog, Chasing time English, StepsWeb, Jix Reality, and PipiLearning, while three additional companies already in the regions  Writers' toolbox,Komodo wellbeing and Kami, joined the Singapore programme for specific elements. 

The programme included meetings with the Ministries of Education of all three countries, specifically to understand the digital adoption and education roadmaps of each. Singapore shared their Transformation of education technology masterplan 2030 as a capability multiplier for educators and learners, and Viet Nam shared their focus on and investment in technology and management systems and using education technology to build the human potential of their citizens. Indonesia shared their Super App which allows for their 646.2 thousand schools, 4.2 million teachers and lecturers and 71 million students to all benefit from the large-scale acceleration of an economy moving at pace with a firm policy that ‘no one is left behind. 

Alana Pellow, ENZ’s Business Development Manager, led the delegation and said that the programme was carefully put together to ensure the visit was as much about showcasing New Zealand’s expertise and innovation in EdTech as it was to learn about what other countries and leaders in this space are doing.  

Across the three countries, the EdTech companies had the opportunity to meet and visit education providers from schoolteachers and leaders, vocational education providers and universities to education enrichment centers. They also heard from New Zealand business leaders and government agencies in each region, as well as had briefings and networking with local EdTech owners to gain a deep understanding of the economic and EdTech landscapes in each country. 

The public, private and enrichment education landscapes, which offer significant opportunity for EdTech’s, was a great eye opener particularly in Early Childhood Education (ECE), English language, literacy and English language teacher’s space.  

For example, in Viet Nam it is not uncommon for parents to spend 30% of their income on education – including after school enrichment education such is the ambition of parents for their children,” said Alana. 

The private school market across all three markets is viewed as particularly significant for New Zealand. During the visit, it was noted by a number of diverse education related professionals how the New Zealand EdTech group were subject matter experts with education specific capabilities and expertise across many areas from linguistics, literacy, English language, teaching, academic R&D and collaboration with recognised and respected global experts such as – Oxford University Press, Oxford University, Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology, National University of Singapore, Institute of Technolgy Education and the University of Auckland. 

Interest in New Zealand’s Education Technology was picked up by the local press in Indonesia and Viet Nam, with Viet Nam in particular seeing 17 stories feature across its various media channels. This has provided valuable visibility of New Zealand’s innovation and expertise in digital education across a wide education subsector value base from ECE and K-14 to R&D at tertiary level. Positive leads have followed and the founder and CEO of SIS and Inspirasi schools, which has schools across Indonesia, South Korea, Myanmar, and India, has already been in touch with two of the NZ EdTech companies to explore future collaboration. 

Meeting with Politeknik Negeri Jakarta (VET) Indonesia.

ENZ’s EdTech delegation meeting with Mr. Nguyen Bao Quoc, Deputy Director (Digital Transformation), and colleagues at the HCMC Department of Education & Training, Ho Chi Mihn City, Viet Nam.

The delegation also attended the EDUtech Asia Policy Summit in Singapore where education, education policy makers and education technology solution providers came together from across Southeast Asia. Highlights included:

  1. The pace and scale at which many SEA countries are upskilling and shifting their policy and philosophy to equip their educators, citizens and systems to be meaningfully productive.
  2. That digital literacy training is not just the domain of learnersEducators also need high quality digital training, materials and resources. 
  3. Artificial Intelligence is forcing a rethink on everything and in assessments, what do we care about assessing? Knowledge attainment or the deep skills for being human?  
  4. Partnership is hard but offers competitive advantage and ‘’success’’ when human skills are done well, and many global universities are doing partnership well and reaping the rewards. 

Any New Zealand EdTech and Education publisher companies interested in finding out more about the SEA market can contact Alana Pellow - alana.pellow@enz.govt.nz 

ENZ’s EdTech delegation meeting with Mr. Nguyen Bao Quoc, Deputy Director (Digital Transformation), and colleagues at the HCMC Department of Education & Training, Ho Chi Mihn City, Viet Nam.

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