Cody Bunea Speaker
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CHRIS CLAY

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Education Director
The Mind Lab


While Chris’ career has involved roles in business development, marketing and HR he has worked in the education sector for around 15 years. Whilst he arrived in the classroom during the final years of chalk boards, he has seen many waves of new technologies and pedagogies offered as the next big solution. Despite this, he sees many practices remaining unchanged as innovative educators grapple with education systems based on outdated industrial models. This makes change very difficult and explains why many schools work in a very similar way as they did 30 years ago. Chris is focused on disrupting the status quo and helping education systems become more future focussed.

In mid-2013 Chris became the founding Education Director of New Zealand based educational social enterprise The Mind Lab by Unitec. This has involved developing a diverse range of learning opportunities for both students and teachers including a postgraduate certificate programme in digital and collaborative learning.

This work has provided a vehicle by which Chris can use his deep knowledge of pedagogy, educational technology and leadership to work alongside schools to initiate and manage the disruption of thinking and practice. Whilst carrying out doctoral research on disruption of education systems with a complexity theory lens, Chris has also spent a great deal of time looking beyond the sector for sources of inspiration to innovate. This has led him to develop programmes based around using LEAN to disrupt the thinking of teachers in order to shift practices. This approach has now been used with over 600 educators across Australia and New Zealand.

Chris has worked as a consultant for educational institutions, non-profits, government departments and is a regular speaker at national and international events around education and disruptive thinking (including TEDx). He is a regular contributor of  articles to magazines journals, whilst also reviewing submissions made to science education and communication journals.