IOE - Faculty of Education and Society


Mapping AI in education and international development discourses: public-private partnerships

06 March 2019, 5:30 pm–7:00 pm

Teenagers on a smartphone

Using artificial intelligence as a solution for educational development in the pursuit of SDG4 (Sustainable Development Goal 4).

Event Information

Open to





Centre for Education and International Development (CEID)


Room 604
UCL Institute of Education
20 Bedford Way
United Kingdom

In 2018 Microsoft entered into an agreement with Zimbabwe’s Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education to assist in the development of classrooms that drive innovation, performance, and growth. Microsoft can also offer consultancy services for building educational infrastructure, and identify devices and software for digital education strategies, including AI (machine learning) platforms.

In other African countries, similar public and private partnerships (P3s) are being established where AI in education (AIEd) is presented as an integral part of the solution for educational development goals.

The rationale driving these P3 initiatives is that AI can be used to make education more equitable, accessible, and improve academic performance while developing in students a skill set fitted to future workplace requirements. While AI in schools brings many benefits, transnational corporations providing these systems are also acquiring power to shape ways of imagining and discussing educational issues by virtue of investments in both school infrastructure and human capital. This practice holds social, economic, and ethical implications for the process of educational governance.

This seminar will present preliminary findings from ongoing research that focuses on the discourses emerging at a global scale around the use of AI as a solution for SDG4. Sentiment analysis, geoparsing, and text mining were used to examine multi-scalar documents from P3 contexts to trace social networks and value propagation in debates about AI for educational development.

Following the panel presentations and discussion, questions will be invited from the audience.


About the Speaker

Dr Selena Nemorin (Speaker)

Lecturer in Sociology of Digital Technology at Department of Culture, Communication and Media, UCL Institute of Education

More about Dr Selena Nemorin (Speaker)