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An Era of Paradigm Shifts: Higher Education, Real Estate and City Visionary Leaders to Declare

The Class Graduation Conference – Fast-Forwarding Our Future hosted by The Class of 2020 brings you a half day virtual conference combining live talks, knowledge updates and awards – with a discount for our readers.

2020 has changed everything. Today we’re faced with a crisis in global health and student mobility. The impact of Covid-19 is so profound that it calls into question the very future of our universities and the cities that host them. 

However, a crisis can be a powerful engine for transformation. The Class of 2020 think tank confirms it’s an era of paradigm shifts for the future of living, learning and working, ahead of its Graduation Conference taking place virtually on 19 November. During the conference, global visionary leaders across the industry will reflect on past ten years and uncover the future of living, learning and working for the next ten years. 

PBSA News, an official media partner for The Class Graduation Conference.

This year, The Class of 2020 invites you to a completely different experience: its graduation ceremony. This half-day virtual conference combines thought-provoking live talk shows, knowledge updates from expert correspondents, and the celebration of outstanding achievements via The Best in Class Awards. You will also have the first access to The Class Trend Report 2021: the digital graduation thesis/yearbook. And as a PBSA News reader, we’re thrilled to offer you a 10% discount to the conference – using code: PBSANews

When you can be anywhere, why be somewhere? 

When students and young professionals can work and study anywhere, what are the reasons to choose a city, university or residence for that matter? Rethinking Real Estate author and conference keynote, Dror Poleg argues that technology now provides people with unprecedented choices. Buildings – and whole cities – need to focus on the needs of specific customer groups in order to remain viable and create value for investors. What does it mean in practice? The Class of 2020 identifies it as an opportunity for learning, living and working players to swiftly graduate from current paradigms. 

Graduation from education to learning without boundaries 

The past decade has seen a global boom in international student mobility – with the number of students studying outside of their home country increased by 23% between 2014-2019 according to OECD. Despite the pandemic, long-term prospects still remain positive for the sector. 

Internationalisation of higher education has been the driving force of growing student mobility and demand for student housing in the past decade. A new generation of global talents embraced the idea of education and life experiences in university cities far away from their family homes. However, this year’s global health and mobility crisis brought many back to their bedroom. 

The crisis has highlighted looming questions over the sustainability of the higher education models. The opportunity therefore lies in learning without boundaries – supported by visionary thinking and advanced technology, creating capability and choices for future generations to design their own optimal learning pathway. 

Graduation from spaces to solutions 

With the heightened internationalisation of education, the student living industry – specifically the purpose-built student accommodation (PBSA) sector – also experienced rapid growth from US$2.5bn to US$16.3bn global investment from 2010-2018. The shift to learning without boundaries suggests living, working and learning will be increasingly blended – pushing the industry to offer solutions beyond the physical spaces. 

The Class of 2020 anticipates that in the 21st century our cities will be reshaped by blended experiences – enabled by digital innovations and places that combine living, learning and working. A shift in institutional investors’ objective to co-create portfolios that are sustainable in terms of impact and return also put the industry under pressure. The key for success lies in how shared living players provide new generations with simultaneous living, working and learning experiences while delivering value to society and investors alike.

Graduation from university cities to talent hubs 

Global talent mobility has accelerated vibrant city development and economic success. But the impact of growth and internationalisation has taken its toll on infrastructure, housing markets and community support. Coupled with the crisis, some nations have responded by building walls while others are seeing the population decline for the first time. The Class of 2020 suggests there’s urgent need of governance of cities and policies that enable young talents and cities to thrive. With recovery funds in the pipeline, university cities strengthen its competitiveness towards becoming resilient talent hubs. 

For a 10% discount, use the code: PBSANews

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