What is TEDxOtaniemi all about?

The essence of TED is bringing ideas together and building connections between people. When I attended the TEDSummit in Canada this last June, we had over 450 TEDx organizers coming from all over the world. People with passion, purpose and ideas. We were so diverse that you could learn new things just by chatting for five minutes with the person next to you. The barriers of politics, religion, ethnicity and financial stakes didn't matter, so there could be more opportunities for connection.

As TEDx organizers, we tried to distill what this ..thing is all about into short sentences. These are some of the things we came up with: 

  • TEDx is a platform that curates local and global ideas and experiences that inspire purposeful actions. 
  • The purpose of TEDx is to unite our global community to spread important and diverse local ideas and to empower them to facilitate progress. 
  • The TEDx community connects people, inspires empathy and thereby fosters positive change. 
  • TEDx is a cocreated, borderless learning community giving voice to ideas that matter everywhere. 
  • By nurturing and challenging ideas, we make good shift happen.

"Learn to play, play to learn", our theme for TEDxOtaniemi this year, is an idea about our lives being more than just the necessary things. If we aim only for efficiency, we may lose something that makes us human. Play gives us freedom to try new things, trust more and make new friends. And those are all things that we sorely need. 

The curator of TED recently wrote about the changes in our world and about the hope of a connected humanity.

The current system is in danger of breaking. We need to give a platform to dreamers and reformers who are thinking outside the box.

-Chris Anderson

This is why I believe that we need to nurture the human capacity for learning as well as give time and space for play. To everyone.

Want to play with us?

If you are interested in joining our community, please check out our FB page and community group. We are seeking ideas that matter, and would love for you to join us.

Also, if you're thinking that you want to organize a TEDx event yourself, I would be more than happy to help. Contact me at tedxotaniemi@gmail.com.


"Designing for love of learning" sounds really good! What does it mean?

Learning and education are faced with a world that is quick to reinvent itself. A bachelor’s degree in a university, in general, takes 3-4 four years to complete. In that timeframe, the amount of information available in the world will have doubled 3-4 times over. In the span of a few years, new industries will have blossomed while old ones have been snuffed out of existence. The pace of change is genuinely breathtaking. How do we respond to this? Will we bend and break under the indomitable challenge of the times? Do we choose to cover our eyes and ears and hope that whatever we are doing now is going to be enough?

No! We will plant our feet firmly on the ground and stare the beast of perpetual change straight in the eyeball!

And this, ladies and gentlemen, is what TEDxOtaniemiED and its topic “Designing for love of learning” is all about: finding solutions to one of the greatest challenges of our time. And here’s what we mean when we say it.

The Learning

The nature of our learning has never mattered more. As information and facts are in constant flux and ever since the advent of near-omniscient internet, the adoption of plain knowledge has become less and less important. We must move on from solitary fact-bingeing to social fact-making. Co-creation. Interaction. Our learning needs to focus on teaching us skills that help us navigate this world of constant change. We need to be able to understand a multitude of fields, create new information in dynamic environments, and apply it in the right place, in the right way.

This means that our learning needs change just as rapidly, and that out learning and teaching must change too. None of us learn anything, though, if we feel we’d rather be doing something else with our time.

The Love

We believe that learning and having fun with it is the best way to grow and want to learn even more. We want to love learning and we want to discover which circumstances make this happen. It is impossible to love learning if there is no inherent motivation to learn. How can we help people to discover what they love, what they are naturally good at, what they wish to pursue with all of their being? How do we create environments and situations where individual talent is not throttled, but can thrive, while still maintaining excellent academic rigour? And how do we settle this with the requirement for formal education? Or do we have to?

The Designing

Our educational systems are struggling to keep up with this constant upheaval of learning contents and the displacement of old professions by previously unforeseen ones in the job market. They are no longer able to respond to these changes in a timely manner. Our children are faced with the glaring disparity between their everyday digital lives and the outdated pedagogy of their classrooms.

We need to reinvent our educational systems. How can they react to the changing world? How can we ensure that we learn the skills we need to learn, that really are relevant? How do we recreate our cumbersome, slow-in-evolving, nigh-on-stale school systems? And if we manage this, are traditional degrees still relevant? And who decides, in this world of MOOCs (massive open online courses) and endless digital content, which degree is relevant and which isn’t?

Designing for love of learning

If we learn to love learning, if we find ways to create systems that foster just that passion for knowledge co-creation, if we manage to integrate the latest of the digital revolution into the learning process, then there truly can be no limit to human ability. If we manage this, then we can begin to design for love of learning. And when that happens, we will see a revolution of education in the entire world.

As with every revolution, the change begins with an idea. An idea that is shared by a group of people who wish to see a change in the world. It starts with us, with you. And it starts, we hope, with TEDxOtaniemiED.

Come join us!


Piia Kuosmanen

Speaker Support

TEDxOtaniemi ED Core Team


Remember to follow on Twitter!




The first 12 hours

We published the TEDxOtaniemiED website and Facebook event last night around 10 PM. And my life went absolutely bananas. This morning I tried to flag down my train like it was a taxi. The conductor seemed somewhat amused.

Some figures from the first 12 hours:

  • over 1400 people clicked attending on the Facebook event.
  • over 113 000 people saw our event on their Facebook
  • over 1800 page views on the website 
  • over 30 applications to volunteer through our web forms (go fill one out now! especially if you have experience in managing stage and event technology. hint hint.)
  • too many chat messages and bad jokes among the Core Team to even count
  • 4 absolutely gobsmacked Core Team members

The theme of our TEDx conference is Designing for love of learning. We want to start a conversation about what the future of learning will look like. Personally, I want to help people be awesome and fulfill their potential to be fully realized, ethical humans. How about you?

How do you love to learn? What do you want the future of learning to look like?

Answer in the comments below or give us a shout out in social media.