Transforming Indian Education through Online Education Resources

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by Venkatesh Hariharan on Tuesday, March 5, 2013


Session type

Technical level


An understanding of how Information Technology is becoming the new medium for delivery of education.


Information Technology has transformed almost every industry that it has touched. However, education remains one of the last sectors that remain untouched by technology. In recent years, years, Online Education Resources (OERs) like Khan Academy, IIT's NPTEL and MIT's Open Courseware have made high quality educational resources accessible to millions of teachers and learners. Khan Academy's educational channel has 225 million views on YouTube, while NPTEL's channel has 82 million views and MIT's OCW has 46 million views. This session looks at how OERs can help Indian students and teachers, how we can use technology to amplify the voices of great teachers in India, and how it can be used for better analysis of students' performances.


Laptop and Projector

Speaker bio

Hariharan is a technology journalist turned policy analyst with a long term interest in the area of technology and public policy. He is Director of Knowledge Commons, a non-profit that works on policy issues that affect the information society. Prior to Knowledge Commons, Hariharan was Head of Public Policy and Government Affairs for Google India and worked on ensuring a free and open Internet. Before joining Google, he served as Corporate Affairs Director for Red Hat in the Asia-Pacific region and worked on key policy issues like open standards, software patents, collaborative innovation and open source in government.

Hariharan is a former Executive Editor of Express Computer and the first Indian to be selected for the prestigious Knight Science Journalism Fellowship (1998-99) at Massachusetts Institute of Technology. During his fellowship at MIT, he investigated technologies that can be deployed for bridging the digital divide. As the Executive Editor of Express Computer, Hariharan imparted a dynamic news orientation to the magazine. He has interviewed some of the leading figures in the world of technology including Microsoft's Bill Gates, John Gage of Sun Microsystems, Stan Shih of the Acer Group and many others. He has written for leading Indian and international publications including MIT Technology Review, Upside, Slashdot, Economic Times, Times of India and many others.

Hariharan also co-founded of, one of the leading localization groups in the India subcontinent. has translated the GNOME and KDE user interface of Linux to Hindi. The organization has helped localization groups in India, Bhutan, Nepal and other countries localize Linux and other open source software to their native languages. He has delivered talks on technology and policy issues at World Foresight Forum, Open World Forum and at leading academic institutions like MIT, IIT Bombay, IIT Guwahati, IIIT-Bangalore, IIM Bangalore and many others.