Disruptive innovation in ELT

ELT and disruptive innovation: what does the theory actually tell us?

In this guest post, Ed Pegg looks at disruptive innovation:
The terms ‘disruption’ and ‘disruptive innovation’ seem to have entered the ELT lexicon in recent years but do you know what the terms actually mean? According to Clayton Christensen, the theory’s creator, it’s one of the world’s most misunderstood ideas and most applications of his work are done in error. If we’ve misunderstood the theory, does that mean that our recent response to online learning and other threats has been a mistake?

An ELT publisher’s survival plan

It’s crunch time for ELT publishers. There are a few more years left for the traditional ELT publishing business to stagger on, possibly even quite profitably for some. But we all know it’s on the way out, as evidenced by the attempts – with varying degrees of conviction – of the existing players to turn their businesses into ones capable of surviving and thriving in a world populated by rapidly changing student expectations and super-ambitious and rapacious EdTech start-ups who will very happily destroy the cosy world of ELT.

Disruptor or disrupted? How to be among the 9% that survive

A recent scary-sounding post on FutureBook (Will you be in the nine percent of publishers that survive?) about recent research into disruptive innovation got me thinking about what it might mean for ELT publishing. A few weeks ago I posted a primer on disruptive innovation in which I made the case for EdTech as a disruptive force in ELT. I thought it might be interesting now to delve into this a bit more and explore what it is that a disruptive ELT publisher might do, and how to avoid being among the ranks of the disrupted.

The great EdTech disruption in ELT

To some extent, the whole concept of EdTech is based on the possibilities for disruption engendered by online and mobile tech. The belief is that the “education space” (ugh) is ripe for disruption, and the “factory model” of education we currently impose on our youth is rightly about to be swept away by an EdTech revolution. But what does EdTech disruption mean for ELT?