Audrey Watters is a writer and independent scholar who focuses on education technology — its products, its politics, its pedagogical implications.
She has worked in the education field for almost twenty years: as a graduate student, college instructor, and program manager for an ed-tech non-profit. Although she was two chapters into her Comparative Literature dissertation, she decided to abandon academia, and she now happily fulfills the one job recommended to her by a junior high aptitude test: freelance writer. She has written for The Atlantic, Edutopia, Inside Higher Ed, The School Library Journal, and elsewhere across the Web, but she is best known for her work on her own website Hack Education (http://hackeducation.com)
Watters has given keynotes and presentations on education technology around the world and is the author of several books, including The Monsters of Education Technology, The Revenge of the Monsters of Education Technology, The Curse of the Monsters of Education Technology, and Claim Your Domain.
Watters will spend her Spencer year investigating the social networks of education technology’s proponents, tracing the relationships among investors, entrepreneurs, politicians, and professors active in education technology companies — mainly startups — and analyzing the stories they tell about a technological future of education. The project will draw on the research she’s already undertaken to identify who’s funding ed-tech companies. (See: http://funding.hackeducation.com.) This new project will also track who’s founding ed-tech companies. And it will ask, how are founders — particularly those who become media and industry spokespeople, of sorts — connected to investors, politicians, organizations, and other entrepreneurs?