Keynote speakers

Keynote speakers

Announcing our Headline Speakers for Bett 2023!

We’re delighted to announce our headline speakers for Bett 2023! This year, our keynotes join us in the Arena to explore our overarching theme: How can we reconnect the education ecosystem, reimagine the potential of technology in education and renew our commitment to equitable learning for all.


Steven Bartlett

Steven is a speaker, investor, author and content creator, hosting Europe’s biggest podcasts, ‘The Diary of a CEO’. From a bedroom in Manchester, this university drop-out built what would become one of the world’s most influential social media companies when he was just 21 years old and now, at 29, is widely considered one of Europe’s most talented and accomplished young entrepreneurs and philosophical thinkers.

Steven is particularly focused on inspiring a new generation of entrepreneurs and creators from a BAME background and much of his work after winning the “British Black Entrepreneur of the year” award focused on disadvantaged schools and communities.

This year, Steven joined Series 19 of BBC’s Dragon’s Den, as the youngest ever Dragon in the show’s history.

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Darcey Bussell

Dame Darcey Bussell DBE –  is the most famous British ballet dancer of her generation and former Strictly Come Dancing Judge.

Amongst her many activities she presents The Royal Ballet’s worldwide cinema simulcasts and is a Principal coach at The Royal Ballet.

Darcey founded the charity DDMIX & DDMIX for Schools (Diverse Dance Mix), a dance fitness programme, whose primary aim is to have dance fitness incorporated into an expanded physical education in British schools.

Awarded a CBE in 2007, she was made a Dame Commander in the 2018 New Year honours list.

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Professor Damian Hughes

Professor Damian Hughes is a bestselling author who combines his practical and academic background within sport, organisational development and change psychology, to help organisations and teams to create a high performing culture.

He was appointed as a Professor of Organisational Psychology and Change for Manchester Metropolitan University in 2010 and is the co-host of The High Performance Podcast, an acclaimed series of interviews with elite performers from business, sport and the arts, exploring the psychology behind sustained high performance.

Damian’s innovative and exciting approach to leadership has been praised by Sir Richard Branson, Muhammad Ali, Sir Terry Leahy, Sir Roger Bannister, Tiger Woods, Jonny Wilkinson and Sir Alex Ferguson.

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Anne-Marie Imafidon, MBE

Computer scientist, mathematician and social entrepreneur Anne-Marie Imafidon inspires women to study and pursue careers in science, technology, engineering and maths.

Since becoming one of Oxford University’s youngest graduates, she has worked across a range of industries and founded the Stemettes, a social enterprise dedicated to bringing girls and young women to STEM subjects. She now hosts the Evening Standard’s Women Tech Charge podcast, and comments on technology, the changing nature of work, and the challenges both present to business and society.

Anne-Marie has served on the board of DCMS’s Digital Skills Partnership and is a trustee for the Institute of the Future of Work. She has been featured as one of the top ten BAME leaders in tech by the Financial Times, and the most influential woman in UK tech by Computer Weekly.

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Amol Rajan

Amol Rajan is a broadcaster for the BBC. Twice a week, he presents Radio 4's flagship Today programme. He also presents University Challenge, replacing Jeremy Paxman as only the third host in the show's history. He has a prime-time interview show, called Amol Rajan Interviews. The most recent interviewee was Bill Gates. He hosts podcasts on subjects like Education and Climate Change. And he makes current affairs documentaries, mostly on social mobility. The most recent series was called How to Crack the Class Ceiling, and is on the iPlayer.

Prior to all this, he has presented many other shows at the BBC, from The One Show on BBC One to Zoe Ball's Breakfast Show on Radio 2; Start the Week and The Media Show on Radio 4; and for many years he was a food critic on MasterChef. He has just stepped down from his position as Media Editor for BBC News, leading the Corporation's coverage of media and technology globally.

Before joining the BBC, he spent nearly a decade in newspapers. He was appointed Editor of The Independent newspaper aged 29, the youngest Editor of a broadsheet in British history, and the first from an ethnic minority. He spent his gap year at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, before reading English at Downing College, University of Cambridge. He was Editor of Varsity, the student newspaper. His first book, Twirlymen, was a history of spin bowling in cricket. He is the co-founder of KEY Sessions, a charity for inner city teenagers in London.

He grew up in Tooting in south London.

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Michael Rosen

Michael Rosen is one of Britain’s best loved writers and poets for children and adults. He is currently Professor of Children’s Literature at Goldsmiths, University of London where he co-devised and teaches an MA in Children’s Literature.  

Michael is also a popular broadcaster and has presented BBC Radio 4’s acclaimed programme about language, “Word of Mouth” since 1998, as well as regularly presenting documentary programmes for BBC Radio 4 and BBC Radio 3, including the Sony Gold Award-winning “On Saying Goodbye”.  

Michael has published in the region of 200 books for children and adults, including three booklets for teachers on writing and reading. He writes up a monthly news page on the website and a blog for teachers giving ideas for writing.

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We’re so excited for our headline speakers to join us at Bett 2023 to answer some of the biggest questions facing educators today, with a key focus on our six global themes: Leadership, Innovation, Futures, Skills, Inclusion and Wellbeing.

Get your ticket for Bett 2023 here!

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