"What makes someone successful in the 21st century is definitely not your ability to memorize facts. What will make someone successful is your relentless capacity to innovate, to create. It's your ability to network, to make friends from your own circle and from other countries. It's your ability to see through challenges, to look for opportunities in problems, and to take action to change things instead of waiting for someone else to do something," Zhao said in an interview after his keynote.
Meanwhile, he added, the U.S. is focusing on the wrong goal by aiming for higher standardized test scores. "Fixing the horse wagon won't get us to the moon," he said, referring to the current educational system as a holdover from an outdated era. Emphasizing test scores over creativity will undermine American students' talents and confidence -- the very qualities that countries like China are trying to encourage. An "outlier" like Lady Gaga, Zhao noted, would be of no use in the village where he grew up. Yet she's become a mega-star in the U.S. because of a "tolerance for diversity of talents."
Via Pippa Davies @PippaDavies