Participants of the 6th Davos Philanthropic Roundtable: Online education can change people’s lives

Expansion of online education is already giving people an opportunity to change their lives. This was the matter of discussion at the 6th Davos Philanthropic Roundtable held by the Victor Pinchuk Foundation.

According to the discussion moderator Thomas Friedman, the New York Times Foreign Affairs columnist and the author of the international bestseller “The World is Flat”, online education has a tremendous potential for changing people’s lives and the whole world. “This is the most exiting revolution going on on the planet today”, he emphasized. 

To support his words Tomas Friedman interviewed a 12-year-old girl from Pakistan, Khadija Niazi, who only a year ago took a college level physics course with the online education platform Udacity. Today the young girl intends to carry on with her online education and plans to take on history, astrobiology and chemistry. “I want to know what is universe and how it all works”, she explained. 

The most important advantage of the online education, according to Daphne Koller, co-founder and co-CEO of one of the largest internet education platform Coursera, is free access to education available to anyone, regardless of their financial situation, nationality, geographic location or health condition. “We have seen how availability of access to education changes lives”, she said, highlighting the fact that such access is particularly important to the people who want to get new skills or a better job, as well as for disabled people who cannot study in conventional educational institutions. Founder of Udacity Sebastian Thrun agreed with this opinion, having added that “we are moving towards such a world where education will become a basic human right.”

Video record of the 6th Davos Philanthropic Roundtable " - Online Education Changing the World"

The Philanthropic Roundtable is organized each year at the occasion of the Annual Meeting of the World Economic Forum to bring together the world’s most renowned philanthropists and leaders from politics, the business community and the non-profit sector. Roundtable discussions address state-of-the-art approaches to problem-solving and seek to inspire the new global philanthropists of the future.

Since 2007, Roundtable panelists have included, among others, Tony Blair, Sir Richard Branson, Bill Clinton, Bill and Melinda Gates, Jet Li, Shimon Peres, Muhammad Yunus,H.E. Sheikha Al Mayassa bint Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani, Paulo Coelho, Sean Parker, Eric Schmidt, Alec Ross and others.

The 6th Davos Philanthropic Roundtable Telco Partner is Kyivstar.

The following day, Friday, January 25, 2013, 12.30-14.00 (GMT+1) the
Victor Pinchuk Foundation and an international investment advisory group EastOne will hold the 9th Ukrainian Lunch.  Each year on the occasion of the Annual Meeting of the World Economic Forum in Davos this lunch meeting addressing current trends in Ukraine is hosted in order to promote the country among top international leaders and engage in a dialogue with the international community. Among previous speakers at this traditional event have been Viktor Yanukovych, Carl Bildt, Bill Clinton, Thomas Friedman, Bronislaw Komorowski, Aleksander Kwasniewski, Chris Patten, Dominique Strauss-Kahn, George Soros and others.

Contacts for media inquiries:
Dennis Kazvan
Communications Director of the Victor Pinchuk Foundation
E-mail: [email protected]
Tel: +380 44 494 11 48 

Background information 

The Victor Pinchuk Foundation is an international, private, non-partisan, philanthropic foundation based in Ukraine. The Foundation was established in 2006 by businessman and public figure Victor Pinchuk. Its goal is to empower future generations to become the change-makers of tomorrow. To achieve this goal, it develops a variety of projects, builds partnerships in Ukraine and worldwide, and invests in three main areas: 

  • in people, to boost human capital,
  • in society, to promote social responsibility,
  • in the world, to foster a more integrated world.

The projects of the Victor Pinchuk Foundation include the network of neonatal centres ‘Cradles of Hope’, the largest private scholarship program in Ukraine ‘Zavtra.UA’, the ‘WorldWideStudies’ project encouraging Ukrainian youth to get Master’s degrees in the world’s best universities, the center for contemporary art PinchukArtCentre, and the international network YES (Yalta European Strategy) to support Ukraine’s European integration.

The Foundation is a member of the European Foundation Center and the Ukrainian Grantmakers Forum. It cooperates with the Clinton Global Initiative, the Brookings Institution, the Peterson Institute for International Economics and other non-governmental organizations. 

More information at:

The 6th Davos Philanthropic Roundtable Telco Partner is Kyivstar 

“Kyivstar” is a top operator in the mobile phone market and one of the best brands in Ukraine. According to the results of the Ericsson Company’s annual study, the “Kyivstar” mobile network is one of the best in Europe and covers all the cities of Ukraine, as well as more than 28,000 rural settlements, all the main national and regional roads and most of the Ukrainian coastline. “Kyivstar” provides EDGE/GPRS services all over its coverage domain and roaming services in 195 countries on five continents. “Kyivstar” provides telecommunication services under “Kyivstar”, “djuice” and “Kyivstar Business” brands.

“Kyivstar” is an experienced player in the market of fixed-line communication services for business and broadband access powered by FTTB. The broadband network (“Home Internet” service) operates in 138 cities in Ukraine. 

“Kyivstar” is a Ukrainian subsidiary of VimpelCom Ltd., the global telecommunications group, which operates in Europe, Asia and Africa.

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