Keynote speakers

Note: You can review already both speeches at the IATED Talks section


Robert Torres

Video Games for Learning and Assessment:  Potential for a Sea-change in the Educational Landscape

Robert Torres, PhD, is a Senior Program Officer at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation serving on the Next Generation Learning team where he leads two portfolios, one focused on Games for Learning and Assessment and another focused on Competency-Based Education/Anytime, Anywhere.

Robert Torres

Before joining the foundation Robert served at the Chief Research Officer at the Institute of Play where he co-founded Quest to Learn, a games-based school in New York City. His research at Quest to Learn and on Gamestar Mechanic, a video game designed to support kids’ development of basic game skills, has focused on the potential game design and games-based environments have in supporting learners’ cognitive development. Robert has worked as a teacher, school principal and education consultant since 1988.

He taught 5th grade as a Teach for America (TFA) teacher, served as a school director as part of TFA teacher induction programs and eventually became President of Teach for America’s National Faculty. As a spin-off of TFA, Robert designed and became principal of The Learning Project One Middle School from 1995 to 1999, a school primarily serving low-income students from New York’s Lower East Side.

Bill and Melinda Foundation

Since 1999, Robert has focused on the design and research of high-impact learning environments, which included founding and leading for eight year designbydesign, a not-for-profit consulting group, which led the design of over 30 middle and high schools across New York City and Connecticut. From 1994-1999 Robert wrote and produced a documentary film on the impact of poverty on his Puerto Rican family in New York. The film, Nuyorican Dream, premiered at the Sundance 2000 Film Festival, was acquired by and aired on HBO, and has won numerous awards in the United States and abroad. The documentary offers observations about the legacy of colonialism and the inadequate American inner-city educational system.

Robert has a B.A. from Oberlin College, a Masters in policy and school administration from Bank Street College of Education and was a Stanford University Research Fellow. Robert completed an education/Learning Sciences PhD focused on games and learning at New York University.



Louise van Rhyn

Cross-sector reciprocal relationships as a catalyst for change in Education

Louise van Rhyn

Louise van Rhyn is a social entrepreneur. She believes the worlds' huge intractable problems can be solved through cross-sector collaboration and a solid understanding of complex social change. Her approach to change is shaped by 20 years of working as an Organisational Change practitioner. She holds a Doctorate in Complex Social Change and has founded a few entrepreneurial organisations. In 2010 she started the School at the Centre of Community social change process and the Partners for Possibility leadership development process: an innovative process to change education in South Africa through collaborative partnerships between business leaders and school principals.