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15th March 2017, 10:14am
Are we speaking clearly? Lord Boateng examines changing global attitudes to education
Lord Boateng A House of Lords peer and global development campaigner will examine how communication and education between nationalities plays a key role in helping people from around the world understand each other’s values in the next Great Minds guest lecture.

Lord Paul Boateng, Chairman of the English Speaking Union, an educational charity which works to give people the skills and confidence to articulate their ideas, will draw on personal life experiences of his African childhood and philanthropic work in the continent for his talk at the University of Lincoln later this month.

Lord Boateng, a barrister who was formerly a cabinet minister and High Commissioner to South Africa, has worked on a range of projects across Africa including vaccination programmes, public health initiatives, and hunger-fighting projects. He chairs the African Enterprise Challenge Fund, the International Council of the Duke of Edinburgh's Award, Book Aid International, and the Planet Earth Institute which promotes science technology and innovation through Higher Education in Africa.

His Great Minds guest lecture entitled, Education for A Changing World: Reflections on a Personal Journey in the UK and Africa, will take place at 11.30am on 24th March 2017 at the University’s main Brayford Pool campus. The talk will be followed by a Q&A with members of the audience.

“We are living in an increasingly interconnected world; people travel more and borders seem to mean less, with instant global connectivity taking new and exciting forms,” said Lord Boateng, who has 30 years’ experience in public life, including almost 20 years as an MP.  

“The unpalatable truth, however, is that effective communication and international understanding continue to remain elusive. Education is the key both to understanding and communicating with each other.

“The ESU was founded almost 100 years ago in a very different world, but one which wrestled with the issue of how to prevent conflict. Today, the ESU continues to work not just to promote better understanding between people through the use of the English language, but to promote the teaching of effective communication as a means of breaking down barriers.

“Mine has been a life time of trying to break down barriers. An ESU branch in Hertfordshire helped me become a more effective communicator when I came to this country as a teenage refugee, and an inspirational English teacher in Ghana helped me love the language as a child. I am looking forward to coming to Lincoln to share that and the joy and opportunity that the English language has brought to my life.”

The University of Lincoln’s Great Minds guest lecture series aims to provide inspirational insights into different aspects of society – from the entertainment world to elite sport – for school and college students in Years 11, 12 and 13. A limited number of places are also available to the public, as well as staff and students.  Admission is free but booking is essential.

The aim is to inspire and encourage thoughtful conversation about careers, industries and disciplines alongside showcasing some of the diverse research and activities that take place within the University.

Recent Great Minds speakers have included Chief Operating Officer of the Bank of England, Charlotte Hogg, BBC Trustee Suzanna Taverne, rugby sporting great Rory Underwood, Lord Victor Adebowale CBE, Chancellor of the University of Lincoln and a cross bench member of the House of Lords, and BBC Autumnwatch presenter Chris Packham.

To book a place at the Great Minds guest lecture visit, email or phone 01522 837100. Priority booking will be given to groups from UK schools and colleges.

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