Moving toward human liberatory models: A conversation with Ulcca Joshi Hansen, Ph.D., J.D. | Benjamin Freud, Ph.D.

In this episode, I speak with Ulcca Joshi Hansen, author, educational thought leader and social change advocate with a twenty-year career dedicated to shifting the foundational values and approaches that undergird America’s education system. She currently serves as the Chief Program Officer for Grantmakers for Education, a member organization that serves as a trusted partner for education philanthropists as they adapt to the changes impacting our world. Her latest book is The Future of Smart and she has a couple TEDx talks that are well worth a listen. We discuss:

  • How this is the first time that employers want the skills that human liberatory models claim to provide (and Ulcca also defines what human liberatory models are!);
  • How the thinking that got us here won’t get us out of here: mechanistic/Newtonian thinking needing to make way for quantum thinking/ancient wisdoms;
  • How blockchain and other emerging technologies are tools that might help us get to where we want to go, but they aren’t the destination.

Benjamin Freud, Ph.D.

Benjamin Freud, Ph.D. is the co-founder of Coconut Thinking, which creates learning and action experiences where all learners have a common purpose; positive impact on the welfare of the bio-collective — any living thing, sentient or plant, that has an interest in the healthfulness of the planet. Benjamin also works as the Whole School Leader of Learning and Teaching at an International School in Thailand. He was the Academic Coordinator at Misk Schools, which, as the school of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, is the most prestigious and high profile school in the kingdom. In 2018-2019, he was also the Head of Upper Primary and Middle School at Misk. Prior to this, he was Vice Principal of the Middle School and High School at the Harbour School in Hong Kong. He holds a Ph.D. in History, an MSc in Education, an MBA, an MA in International Relations, and a BA in International Affairs. Benjamin was born and grew up in Paris, France. He moved to the U.S. when he was 15 and spent 11 years there in different cities, before living in the U.K., Japan, Singapore, Hong Kong, Saudi Arabia, and now Thailand. He started his career in consulting for Internet start-ups in Silicon Valley in the late 1990s, working with people whose ambitions were no less than to change the world. This experience had a profound effect on Benjamin’s outlook on education, innovation, and entrepreneurialism.

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