Reflections on ASU+GSV 2023

[This blog post was written by a human, to be read by humans.]

I attended the 2023 ASU+GSV Summit this month, an educational technology conference that has become one of the premier EdTech conferences in the world. Every year it has grown in size and importance and, more recently, “noise.” It’s harder to filter through the great content and the not-so-great content these days. So, I thought I’d share some of my reflections on the conference for those in our industry who weren’t able to be here in person.


Everyone and everything is talking about AI. It’s real, it will be a game changer, and right now, it’s the noisiest topic of them all. With the splash release of ChatGPT, AI is dominating tech news and the 2023 ASU+GSV show. There is no doubt AI is having a huge moment in the spotlight. It will change the game for many aspects of life, and it looks like education is going to be the first major industry to be disrupted.

Like all big innovations, at the beginning, it’s loud and complicated. There is so much room for innovation, but that also means there’s going to be a lot of dead ends. ASU+GSV is very start-up focused, and there are so many sessions and so many conversations about these businesses that it’s hard to see who might be the real thing or who’s just capitalizing on the hype.

Open LMS is not a start-up in the sense that we’re chasing investment dollars. We’re an established company within Learning Technologies Group’s portfolio of education-focused businesses that serve learners at all stages of the learning-to-earning cycle. This allows us to focus on the two most important aspects of the AI craze: our customers and how we can integrate AI to serve them.

The Connection Between Higher Education & Workforce Learning

It was interesting for me to see this topic talked about so much only six weeks after our Connected conference in Phoenix. Everyone is chasing this connection, and it seems almost silly how organizations are just now leaning into this philosophy. At Open LMS, we live this connection every day as an LMS for many of the largest universities in the world and as an LMS for corporate learning, associations, and training companies. What took everyone else so long?

That doesn’t mean there aren’t some differences between them. After all, we have Open LMS EDU for educational institutions and Open LMS Work for corporations. Yet as we’ve seen over the past three years, students who attend school online are increasingly finding remote jobs. The learner-turned-earner is digital, and the connection between them is shrinking by the day.

Funding Is Tight For EdTech Companies

ASU+GSV is really the place for EdTech investors and companies to meet, and this year was no exception. But the current economic climate is still quite murky, and the bar is definitely higher for organizations to get the funding they need to innovate and grow.

Product/Market fit is more important than ever, as is a clear path to go to market. For us, this seems to actually magnify the importance of the core platforms that are already in the ecosystem: Learning Management Systems, Student Information Systems, and Customer Relationship Management Systems. Not only is Open LMS already in the market, we have a clear product/market fit. With a 98% client satisfaction rating, we know we’re providing what our clients need and, as noted above, continue to innovate for their future needs.

To bring it home, those future needs are AI, and they’re not too far away. We always want to serve as a resource to our clients, which is why we’re hosting the AI in Learning Summit to share with learning professionals everything they need to know about AI in learning without all the noise and overwhelm that comes with it. AI experts will help attendees understand what is possible today, what’s envisioned for the future, and the challenges we’ll need to overcome along the way.

Any and all learning professionals are welcome to join the online AI in Learning Summit for free June 20-22, 2023. Get your ticket to save your seat now.
Phill Miller
About the author

Phill Miller

Phill is a long time EdTechNerd, and open source junkie. He’s the proud father of an 8 year old son and 6 year old triplets. He enjoys eating cold, half eaten chicken fingers after his kids have fallen asleep and reading British spy novels. Oh, and he’s also the Managing Director of Open LMS. He's been in EdTech for about 20 years, with roles at ANGEL Learning, Moodlerooms, Blackboard, and Oxygen Education. Phill is based in Indianapolis, Indiana.

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