Education Futures


Strategy, Design, Implementation


Engaged on every continent!


We know they are different!


Curricular & Pedagogical Vision


Multi-Sector, Multi-Skilled, Multi-National


Critical Support to Tech Startups


We put the learner first every time!

I AM LEARNER: Transforming Education in the Era of the Cloud

I Am Learner is an independent consultancy in education, technology and innovation that offers the experience, the knowledge, the imagination and the partners to meet the needs of a broad range of clients. Led by John Connell, with his unique blend of real-world experience in education, technology, government and business, I Am Learner operates across the public, private and third sectors bringing insight and vision to deliver the results our clients need.

John Connell

UNIQUE experience across education AND technology

John Connell is an expert consultant working to bring education and technology together for the positive transformation of teaching and learning. He works across the public, private and third sectors, seeking to bring innovative and pragmatic thinking, based on a lifetime of varied experience, to his clients..

  • Teacher & Headteacher/Principal
  • Local & Central Government
  • Unique mix of public & private sector experience
  • Major Project Management (Glow)
  • Global Business Development with Cisco for major clients
  • Blue-chip client base for I Am Learner

Transforming Education through Technology

His work has covered all sectors, and includes: development of pedagogies, educational research, teacher education, all aspects of education in the developing world, national and regional education strategies, national ICT strategies in education, social media in the classroom, teacher and administrator workshops, and learning/collaborative platform development (approaches, strategies, architectures, implementation, project management), high level educational network and infrastructure design, business development for tech startups, technology commercialization.

He works independently or, when appropriate, in association with one or both of two great consulting teams at Go To Market Group and Partners, based in Dusseldorf, Germany, and Blacklin Associates, based in Washington DC, USA. Both operate globally.

Worldwide speaking engagements

John is an experienced and compelling public speaker who can speak on multiple aspects of our education and technology futures. He has delivered keynotes all around the world, with all sizes of audiences, from relaxed rooms with a handful of educators to large auditoria with thousands of people.

He has conducted seminars and workshops on a wide variety of subjects and for an equal variety of purposes - from supporting clients to create and develop policy and strategy, to working with educators and managers on the use of the open web, social media and learning platforms in their teaching and administration, and much else besides.

He has spoken and conducted workshops in South Africa, Australia, the USA, Saudi Arabia, Romania, Russia, Singapore, China, Ghana, Ethiopia, Costa Rica, Mexico, Germany, Sweden, France, Slovakia, Dubai, Kuwait, Egypt, Morocco and Tunisia.


View John Connell's Résumé

John Connell's International Experience


• Delivering major keynotes
• Delivering critical workshops
• Working with clients to create strategy
• Adding field expertise to a bid team
• Designing education-ready infrastructures
• Education, Technology & Business expertise
• Experience on every continent

core services

Research & Report Writing

Produced a number of major reports, written to specification, for a range of international clients across some critical education and technology issues.

Network Strategy & Architecture

Extensive experience in working with expert teams to create and develop network architectures to support learning for schools, universities and national education systems.

Speaking / Keynotes

An experienced, provocative and confident public speaker on a wide range of issues around education and technology today. Has presented all over the world to audiences large and small.

Trusted Advisor on Tech Trends in Education

Highly knowledgeable and thoughtful about all the major technology trends that are already impacting or are likely to have an impact on education over the next 10 years and more.

Professional Development

Courses of any desired length, on any aspects of 21st Century Learning, Education ICT, Teacher Education and much more. Talk to John about your specific requirements and he will develop a course to suit your needs.

Business Development & Market Analytics

A unique blend of insight, experience and knowledge, across education, project management and business development in ed-tech across the globe. Successful support & advocacy for tech startups

Thoughts and Ideas (with links to the I Am Learner blog]

NOT Enterprise Networks by another name!

Too many who design networks for education believe they are creating a standard enterprise architecture, and that just a few tweaks here and there will turn it magically into an education network. This is wrong! An education network is a network like no other. Whether serving a single school, a group of schools, a college, a university campus, or whatever, an education-ready network should be designed on the basis of a clear understanding of the reasons for its implementation. An education network is not simply a re-branded enterprise network!

Creativity in the Digital Age

An education that does not enable learners to be creative across all the domains they wish to explore is an education bereft of human delight, pleasure and exuberance. The digital revolution has put highly sophisticated tools for video, photography, music, illustration, graphic design and other areas of creativity into ‘amateur’ hands, and whether the ‘professionals’ like it or not, that is just how it will stay.

The Internet of Things & Education

If we distil the Internet of Things down to its essential purpose, it is the use of technology to permit us as human beings to yield or surrender some aspects of our attention, the need for our attentiveness, to the smart machines and the smart network in (we hope) a controlled way, and in a way that benefits us and doesn’t harm us. The Internet of Things in education should be something that learners do for themselves and to themselves, and not have done to them

M-Learning Goes Mainstream

Mobile learning (M-Learning), across its many manifestations, is about to take off in a big way. The combination of trends, factors and affordances is creating the perfect social and technological ecosystem for virtual learning to spread far beyond the larger desk-bound and lap-bound devices that have dominated for two decades to the kinds of devices that fit in a pocket or are so easily carried and used anywhere, any time.

The People's Classroom in the Cloud

In the same way that anyone setting up their own e-Commerce site or setting up their own blog has a range of high quality and reliable platforms to choose from when they come to implement their desired service, CommonLearn will deliver an infinitely configurable, pedagogy-neutral and content-free classroom in the cloud, whether you need it for just 2 learners, 200,000 learners, and possibly even for 2 million learners!

A Short Philosophy of Education

I am learner.
Just as no one can see the colours I see, just as no one can hear the music I hear, just as no one can feel what I feel when I hold something in my hand, and just as no one can sense the world as I perceive it around me, no one can teach me.
No one can teach me.

Quote of the week

Education is not preparation for life; education is life itself.

John Dewey