Veduca MOOC Founders Interviewed by Nicolas De Santis About Future of Education

Corporate Vision® Talks – Visionary Leadership and Business Model Innovation

Veduca – “Knowledge should be within the reach of anyone who is willing to learn”

Veduca is a highly successful Brazilian education video platform startup, which is aiming to democratize access to top quality higher education around the world, and improve peoples’ lives in a sustainable way by providing high quality educational video content, for free. Veduca created the first online MBA (Masters’ of Business Administration) degree in the world; an online certification which is actually issued by the Brazilian Ministry of Education, thus giving it significant value. By translating and subtitling materials, lectures, and videos from top universities around the world such as Harvard, Stanford and Yale, and arranging them into free courses, Veduca aims to remove two of the largest barriers to educational accessibility in Brazil; cost and language, and so far it is one of the most promising and fast growing Ed-Tech start-ups in Latin America, with over 200 million video views, 150,000 registered users, and more than 5,600 classes from 20 top universities around the world.

“We launched in partnership with USP (University of Sao Paulo) which is the biggest and best university in Latin America, and with that, we were able to start realising our vision on the future of e-ducation, which is all about certification…we launched the world’s first online open MBA in the world, our MBA on engineering and innovation…materializing our vision of democratizing top quality education in Brazil.”  Carlos Souza, CEO and Founder of Veduca, talks about his vision for the future of education

Corporate Vision Talks – Gold Mercury’s Series

“Corporate Vision® Talks” is Gold Mercury’s series to discuss business model innovation, visionary leadership and global challenges. During the interview they discussed the revolution in the educational paradigm which is being spurred by recent technological advancements and the relative ubiquity of technology in our modern everyday lives;  and examined how this is helping to democratize access to top-quality higher education, and creating a new system with unprecedented levels of individualization, accessibility, and flexibility. They assess the business models which are present in education, and then explore the ways in which innovative changes in EdTech are disrupting these traditional models, which in many cases have remained relatively unchanged for centuries.

The Future of E-ducation: The Impact of Technology and Analytics on the Education Industry

The interview builds on themes explored in our Ed-Tech Report: “THE FUTURE OF E-DUCATION: THE IMPACT OF TECHNOLOGY AND ANALYTICS ON THE EDUCATION INDUSTRY”. The study examines the way in which modern technology is bringing remarkable innovation into the educational sector; a field which has historically remained fairly fixed and traditional for centuries. The report analyses the degree to which education is being made into a universally accessible, innovative, personalized, and adaptive experience, and finds that the these changes will be pivotal for achieving the United Nations’ goal of universal education by 2015. The paper breaks down new types of technology into three broad categories, and then examines how they are influencing the shape of modern education; the categories being: “Open Sources and the Internet”, “mobile and multi-faceted technology”, and “virtual learning environments/learning analytics”. These categories are broken down further and examined closely, and the heart of the paper consists of many detailed case studies which provide examples of companies and technologies leading the way in their respective fields.

“This report shows that technology will disrupt education in a way never seen before in other industries. The tech tsunami is coming towards the shores of education and it will disrupt all education business models and the meaning and purpose of education, from curriculums to certification, to how and why people are hired in the future.” Nicolas De Santis, President of Gold Mercury International, discussing the changes in the education sector.

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Swedish Television Airs Interview with Nicolas De Santis on the Future of the European Union

Sveriges Television (SVT), the Swedish public national television channel, has aired its latest main cultural programme called “Kobra,” which features an interview with Nicolas De Santis, Gold Mercury President.

The interview covers Nicolas De Santis’s creation of the European Superhero, Captain Euro, for the launch of the EURO currency in 2002, and discusses the future of the European Union brand.

Watch the trailer for Kobra’s Captain Euro segment!

“Captain Euro started as a social research experiment to test the feelings, emotions and perceptions of the EU in Europeans and the world. When we launched it, the reaction was fantastic, because people either loved Captain Euro, or they hated Captain Euro. This is what we wanted – we wanted people to finally emotionally react to Europe.” – Nicolas De Santis, President of Gold Mercury International, speaking about the public response to Captain Euro.

Nicolas De Santis is an expert in European Union identity issues and branding and has advised the European Parliament and the European Commission on this subject, as well as on the launch of the Euro currency. Nicolas De Santis created Captain Euro in the 1990s to promote Europe and the launch of the Euro to its citizens and the world. The programme examines some of the reasons for Captain Euro’s creation, and why he has proven so enduring and divisive.

Breaking up Europe? Scottish Independence and UK’s EU referendum
In a globalised world of superpowers, where the nation state is becoming less relevant, and international cooperation more critical, Scotland’s First Minister Alex Salmond yesterday unveiled a white paper on Scottish independence. The paper did not truly answer fundamental questions for an independent Scotland’s future, such as its currency (how it can keep the pound sterling), or how it will deal with needing to reapply to join the EU after separating from the UK, when the UK can veto its membership, and when it does not meet the criteria for membership as an independent state.

With similar separatist movements happening in Europe, the plan for how an independent Scotland can be competitive and relevant in a globalised world economy was not clear. Similarly, the UK has proposed a referendum, questioning its own future in the EU. The referendum raises similar questions about the UK’s future political and economic role, if it were to be outside of the EU. Recently the White House, in an official statement, made it clear that the UK being at the heart of Europe is in the interest of the world. Large corporations investing in the UK also stated that if it were to leave the Union, they would have to reconsider their investments.

“The European Union has a serious identity problem. Instead of going forward, we seem to be going back towards the fragmentation and nationalism of the past, wasting the efforts of entire generations of Europeans. Our energies should not be directed towards repeating our unfortunate past, but rather towards building the future of a solid, competitive Europe which can function in the new world economy. We at Gold Mercury aim to help develop a clear vision for the future of the EU, and make it easy to understand for the people who will participate in, and shape its future”. –Nicolas De Santis on the current European situation.

The BRAND EU Center for European Identity

As the EU identity crisis continues, Gold Mercury will be launching the BRAND EU Center, which will cover issues relating to the concept of EU citizen identity formation. The main aims of the BRAND EU Center are to deliver critical insights on the current state of the European Union’s governance and political structure, as well as address the lack of a common European identity and a strong EU brand. Characters such as Captain Euro, are the first tentative steps towards trying to find a suitable common ground to forge a European brand. Gold Mercury’s BRAND EU Center aims to challenge the current complexity, which is associated with the European Union, so that citizens can start to feel closer to Europe.

“Gold Mercury has identified the lack of a clear EU brand and EU identity as a key barrier to achieving the full support of its citizens and for the development of Europe as a whole. One of the key brand problems for citizens in understanding Europe and participating actively, is the complexity of the current political structure of the EU. Still today, it can be only understood by academics or experts,”  – Nicolas De Santis, President of Gold Mercury International, explaining the need for an EU Identity Initiative, the BRAND EU Center

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Italy’s Need for Future Vision – Nicolas De Santis Interviewed by CNBC

ClassCNBC, the Italian News Division of CNBC, has interviewed Nicolas De Santis, President of Gold Mercury International, on the role that the Italian Presidency of the European Union, starting on 1st July 2014, should play to advance Italy and the EU.

CNBC Anchor Angela Antetomaso interview De Santis, where he proposed that the Italian EU Presidency could be used to develop a strategic vision of the country and relaunch a new ‘futuristic Italian Rinascimento’. Nicolas De Santis, who advises governments and corporations on long-term strategic visioning, business model innovation and sustainable strategies, mentioned in the interview that a strong Europe must be made of strong nations who collaborate to achieve common goals and whose destiny is interlinked. During the interview the importance of fiscal federalism in Europe and the future banking union were discussed.

“The time has come for Italians to choose a new road forward. It is time for a new ‘Italian rinascimento’. Italy needs a strategic national vision that clarifies Italy’s role in the 21st Century, within the EU and the world, that creates a new revived shared national identity and ethic. The future vision must be ambitious but achievable and can be based on the creative and entrepreneurial potential of the “Italianità” (Italian talent and excellence) in the world. The new national vision and ethic would then help direct the energy and decision making of the nation, citizens and politicians”. Nicolas De Santis, in interview with Angela Antetomaeso of CNBC

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Sir Evelyn de Rothschild Meets Nicolas De Santis About Re-Inventing Banking Culture Project

Sir Evelyn de Rothschild, former Chairman and CEO of NM Rothschild and Sons, the international investment bank, met with Nicolas De Santis, President of Gold Mercury International to express his views on the global banking and financial sector and the many different factors which he believes led to the crisis, including ethical, technological and historical reasons.

Sir Evelyn’s comments will contribute to Gold Mercury’s report ‘Re-inventing the Banking Profession for the 21st Century’. The discussion with Sir Evelyn is part of a series of interviews that Gold Mercury is conducting with leading authorities, representatives of financial institutions, academics and other prominent actors involved in the financial services sector, within the scope of Gold Mercury’s ‘New Corporate Culture for Banking’ project.

“Sir Evelyn is one of the great city veterans. His experience in the financial and investment banking world brings very valuable insights to our project. He believes that banking reform is required to fix the profound lapses in banking standards and to allow the banking sector to play the crucial role of supporting the real economy, whilst restoring trust,” said Nicolas De Santis, President of Gold Mercury International.

The Parliamentary Commission on Banking Standards recently issued its final report – ‘Changing Banking for Good’. It outlines the radical reform required to improve standards across the banking industry. Sir Evelyn recently published an article on the important role that banking must play in order to re-establish public confidence in the industry. The article called ‘Banking Must Pursue the Holy Grail of Confidence’ clearly expresses that the City of London’s most important traded commodity is confidence. If that is lost, there remains little to do business with and without confidence it would be impossible to engineer a recovery or reform the financial system. “The biggest penalty of all today is that as a result of the crisis, commercial banks, to maintain their capital resources, are not lending to small and medium sized businesses. This needs to change rapidly if we want to see the economy improve and confidence with the public restored,” stated Sir Evelyn de Rothschild.

Sir Evelyn de Rothschild is currently Chairman of E.L. Rothschild Ltd, a private investment company. He was previously Chairman and CEO of NM Rothschild and Sons Ltd, the international investment bank. Sir Evelyn also served as Chairman of The Economist Group, where the family is a large minority holder. Sir Evelyn is also a Director of IMG Worldwide and a Governor of the London School of Economics and Political Sciences. Previous corporate directorships include: Director of De Beers Consolidated Mines Ltd, and Director of IBM United Kingdom Holdings Ltd. Sir Evelyn has maintained a lifelong commitment to philanthropy. He is Chairman of the ERANDA Foundation, a family foundation that he formed in 1967 to support charities working in the fields of medical research, health and welfare, education and the arts.

Sir Evelyn believes in inclusive capitalism to give a wider range of opportunities for people to participate in the economy. “When clearing banks merged with investment banks, it was the bigger factor of change in the banking industry. We had two very different cultures that had to work together, but in most cases one culture took over the other. There are many examples on how the banking industry has gone wrong. But now I think banks cannot just go back to basics. To re-instate confidence, banks need to play a new role in building community and social value, including being a part of private and public partnerships that create low cost housing or building new and needed infrastructure,” said Sir Evelyn de Rothschild.

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Professor Dawn Chatty, Director of Refugee Studies Centre at Oxford University Meets Nicolas De Santis

Professor Dawn Chatty, Director of the Refugee Studies Centre at the University of Oxford, and Professor of Anthropology and Forced Migration, visited Gold Mercury to meet with President Nicolas De Santis.

During the meeting they discussed parts of Gold Mercury’s upcoming sustainable research agenda and projects on the future of megacities and R2P (the Responsibility to Protect). They also discussed the upcoming Gold Mercury conference in Tunisia which looks at the future of its democracy and its new constitution, and the Arab Spring as a whole. A large part of the world’s displaced people are in Arab countries with forced migration affecting the entire region.

Professor Chatty’s work in forced Migration at the Oxford Refugee Studies Centre includes forced settlement of mobile indigenous peoples (i.e. nomads, pastoralists, shifting agriculturalists and hunting-gatherers) as an outcome of global environmental governance.

The Refugee Studies Centre (RSC) was founded in 1982 and is part of the Oxford Department of International Development. The Refugee Studies Centre (RSC) aims to build knowledge and understanding of the causes and effects of forced migration in order to help improve the lives of some of the world’s most vulnerable people.

Professor Dawn Chatty is a social anthropologist whose ethnographic interests lie in the Middle East. Her research interests include a number of forced migration and development issues. Professor Chatty is both an academic anthropologist and a practitioner, having carefully developed her career in universities in the United States, Lebanon, Syria and Oman, as well as with a number of development agencies such as the UNDP, UNICEF, FAO and IFAD.

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Leading British Economist John Kay Meets Nicolas De Santis for Corporate Culture Banking Project

Leading British Economist, John Kay, a distinguished academic and acclaimed columnist for The Financial Times met with Nicolas De Santis, President of Gold Mercury International, to discuss the global economic challenges affecting the world, specifically the future of banking and financial institutions.

The discussion was part of a series of interviews that Gold Mercury is conducting with leading authorities, representatives of financial institutions, academics and other prominent actors involved in the economic and financial services sector. The interviews are undertaken within the scope of the ‘New Corporate Culture for Banking’ project.

John Kay is an influential economist and his research interests encompass public policy and business strategy. In 2012, Mr Kay chaired the Review of UK Equity Markets and Long-Term Decision Making, which reported to the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills. Mr Kay discussed with Mr De Santis the current economic structure and the ideologies which are shaping it, as well as the future of global economic governance. The loss of trust in the financial sector, the failed role of corporate boards and the necessity for a culture for self-regulation were among the topics that were covered in the discussion. Finally, Mr Kay underlined the need to examine the crucial role of intergenerational equity as part of the new thinking required in the convergence of the economic, environmental and social aspects of a society.

“John Kay is a leading figure in economic and social thinking. His ideas question established norms and contribute towards innovative thinking for the challenges which are shaping the global economy, especially banking. Mr Kay has a holistic view of the financial sector, looking beyond narrowly focused solutions and quick fixes. His way of approaching economic challenges offers us invaluable insights for our ‘New Culture for Banking’ project. The role of banking needs to change, moving towards serving societies to produce a sustainable future for future generations,’’ said Nicolas De Santis, President of Gold Mercury International.

Mr John Kay is a Visiting Professor at the London School of Economics and a Fellow of the British Academy and the Royal Society of Edinburgh. He is a director of several public companies, a writer, lecturer and broadcaster and a weekly contributor to The Financial Times.

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Nicolas De Santis Hosts Book Launch of Shaking the Skies

Leading Change in the Global Aviation Business

The development and progression of aviation continues to be an essential global technological development. Aviation has opened up the individual to the world and in doing so, created a global village, connected cultures, families and nations.

Throughout his time at the International Air Transport Association (IATA), Giovanni Bisignani challenged governments, powerful leaders and airline conglomerates to revolutionise the commercial aviation industry. In his new, aptly named book, Shaking the Skies, Bisignani details the many challenges he faced as he sought to, upon his appointment as CEO and Director General, improve the profile and economics of the aviation industry. Hired “to lead a revolution,” Bisignani presents a remarkable account of an illustrious career that was based around an ethos of ethical leadership, good governance and business determination.

The strongest message that Bisignani seeks to communicate is change. Initially detailing his rise in the aviation industry that led to his appointment at the IATA in 2002, Bisignani’s wealth of experience, run in with Gaddafi in Libya and requests from Mother Teresa tell a fascinating story of how he was able modernise the aviation industry. The story of his rise and how he came to lead one of the biggest associations in the world is also filled with details and facts that demonstrate a man who cared as much about the industry as he did the customer.

His achievements and changes did not seek to purely benefit the IATA and its associated airlines; rather, he pursued a system of change that improved every aspect of the industry. His changes began with management restructuring and, to name one of many successes, led to him enforcing e-ticketing and subsequently making aviation the first ever industry to “enter the paperless world.”

The uniqueness of Bisignani as a CEO is also illustrated and detailed in a concise factual method. Emotively and professionally affected by September 11, Bisignani, during his time at the IATA, greatly improved the environmental and safety procedures of the aviation industry. His continued effort to make flying safer and environmentally friendlier involves global, ethical and unilateral action and is captured entertainingly through meetings with Al Gore, “crazy” technological ideas and a “shooting” incident in Lagos.

The full extent of Bisignani’s developments and contributions to the aviation industry are summed up through a description of how he hopes his changes will lead to “Vision 2050.” Where, as an industry, aviation businesses and governments will co-operate with economic, environmental and moral procedures in mind to ensure airlines continue to be “a force for good.”

The values and ideals which make up Giovanni’s Vision 2050 was the motivating factor behind Gold Mercury International’s decision to co-publish and host the launch of the book. The principle, vision and managerial system which Giovanni outlines in Shaking the Skies corresponds with Gold Mercury’s own views on Global Governance; namely, constructing a future in which ethics, sustainability and visionary leadership underpin an organisations operations.

A central message of Giovanni’s book is the importance of having an effective managerial system in place. This message correlates with Gold Mercury’s mission of seeking to educate organisations about the significance of having a responsible vision that is environmentally friendly and proficiently managed.

Shaking the Skies: Leading Change in the Global Aviation Business will be launched on the 20th May 2013 at the Royal Aeronautical Society, London.

Visit the Shaking the Skies Twitter page for news and extracts about the book.

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