Showcasing the best in education

By S. Indramalar

SINCE its inception three years ago, the World Education Market (WEM) has earned a reputation for being the annual event for those involved in the business of education, training and lifelong learning. 

Past-years' participants have found WEM – a marketplace showcasing educational resources and technologies – rewarding, describing it as a “unique marketplace”, “one-stop shopping  

centre”, and “perfect place to keep up with developments and innovations in education”.  

“We expected to make a lot of contacts, but the response was overwhelming. Not only were companies very interested in what products our clients had to offer, but they were also delighted by our unique international sales and marketing services,” said WEM 2002 participant Mike Gaunt, CEO and founder of ESP International. 

A three-day event, the WEM comprises an extensive exhibition, conference programme and networking sessions. 

It caters for a wide-range of professionals from school systems, technical institutes, universities, government and international agencies; book as well as online and multimedia publishers; television and video producers to those from the satellite, telecommunications and cable companies and computer software and hardware industries. 

As such, the WEM is a platform for commercial transactions, networking and partnerships (academic and commercial).  

“I was interested because WEM was taking place in Europe. I knew that the likely audience would be a very diverse group of professionals and I was keen to explore new ideas.  

“The WEM was a wonderful opportunity to be stimulated by a comparative analysis on what is happening in various parts of the world,” commented Roger Whitaker, Dean, College of Professional Studies at the George Washington University in the United States. 

The WEM 2003, to be held for the second time in Lisbon, Portugal, promises to be a bigger and better affair, focusing on current education trends.  

As such, this year's market will be centred on specific themes like digital content development, quality and standards, the  

knowledge economy and public-private partnerships.  

There will also be dedicated panels in line with WEM 2003's special initiatives.  

“We are working with strong partners on an exciting programme and have a superb line-up of high calibre experts who will debate and tackle the central issues at the leading-edge of the marketplace.  

“This year also sees more interactive and practical workshops to ensure participants from around the world get the maximum learning experience with real take-home value,” said WEM director Elaine Legault. 

Among the sessions at this year's conference are: 

·Next Generation Learning Environment – looking at the concept of mobile learning;  

·Wanted: a Quality Vision! – managing the interplay of content, context and community;  

·Innovative Solutions in Developing Countries – technology assisted e-learning in MBA programmes from Africa and Central Europe, and what lending organisations look at when investing;  

·Building Learning Communities – the role of Cities and Regions in education at a local level; and  

·Waiting for e-Godot: The State of Digital Content Development – growth inhibitors or enablers, revenue models, learning objects, international collaboration, etc.  

A session that will be making a comeback at WEM 2003, due to popular demand, is “Reporting on the Marketplace”, which will feature updates on the latest statistics, reviews of trends and opportunities and public-private investment patterns.  

Experts who will be featured include Claudio Dondi of Scienter, who will speak on the European market; Kosmo Kalliarekos from the Parthenon Groups who will focus on the US market; and International Finance Corporation's Ronald F. Perkinson who will be talking on the international market. 

Also among the new initiatives this year is the “Ask the Experts” session which will feature interactive consulting workshops with practitioners and experts who will provide recommendations and feedback on selected case studies.  

Themes for this initiative include ICT Implementation, Models for Primary and Secondary Education, New Models for Revenue Generation for Schools and Universities at the Crossroads

To book a place at WEM 2003, contact LimKokWing University College of Creative Technology vice-president Gail Phung at: 03-7806 2688. For more details, visit  

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