About DEFI

The Digital Education Futures Initiative at Hughes Hall, Cambridge

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DEFI, the Digital Education Futures Initiative, is your link to innovative pedagogy being developed in and around the University of Cambridge.

We are working to build and support a global community of stakeholders (including academia, education, policy and industry) to develop new models of education and new research priorities arising due to the growing prevalence of digital technology.

DEFI at Hughes Hall

DEFI is part of The Bridge at Hughes Hall, Cambridge, which seeks to forge academic and industry links capable of bringing lasting change to four key areas:

  • Global Health and Wellbeing
  • Education
  • Energy, environment and climate change
  • Artificial Intelligence and Data

Hughes Hall is the oldest graduate college at the University of Cambridge. Originally founded as a teacher training college, Hughes Hall retains its strong focus on Education even today, making it an ideal home for DEFI.

Our programmes

Logo for Camtree, the Cambridge Teacher Research Exchange


Cambridge Teacher Research Exchange

Innovation Lab

Cutting edge and bespoke research


Online and in-person

Inquiring Learners logo

Inquiring Learners

STEM materials for primary students

WoW Scenarios

Introducing young learners to the world of work

Our vision

DEFI’s vision is to create a more inclusive global education system by building a community that offers a space for open dialogue, research, reflection and thought leadership on digital education’s role in shaping a sustainable future.

Exploring the impact of EdTech

DEFI offers research-based answers to some of the big questions that new technology raises for education:

  • What pre-conditions and supports are needed to allow individuals to pursue unique educational journeys using technology?
    • What are the benefits and consequences of this kind of self-directed learning?
  • Can education be integrated into the worlds of work, leisure and citizenship in a way that removes the need for separate educational institutions?
    • What kind of sustainable educational eco-systems would be required to realise this vision in whole or in part?

Theory of Change

Click below to view the DEFI Theory of Change, which provides insights into our work and our pathway to lasting impact.

DEFI Theory of Change document

Stay in touch with DEFI

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