Ayesha Khanna


Ayesha Khanna is an education, technology and urbanization expert with over 15 years of experience at the leading edge of innovation from smart city development to brand strategy.

She is the Co-Founder & CEO of The Keys Academy, an innovative enrichment hub whose unique model of “externships” with leading companies provides secondary school students the opportunity to apply their skills to critical 21st century industries. In 2014, Ayesha also served on the Singapore Ministry of Education’s ASPIRE Steering Committee on higher education reform and applied learning. She is the Founder of 21C GIRLS, a non-profit that provides free coding and robotics classes for girls in Singapore.

Ayesha previously co-founded the Hybrid Reality Institute, a research and advisory group established to analyze emerging technologies and their social, economic and political implications. She directed the Future Cities Group at the London School of Economics and has been a Faculty Advisor at Singularity University.

She has been published and quoted on technology, innovation and smart cities in The New York Times, BusinessWeek, TIME, Newsweek, Forbes, Harvard Business Review, Strategy+Business, and Foreign Policy. She is author of Straight Through Processing (2008) and co-author of Hybrid Reality: Thriving in the Emerging Human-Technology Civilization (2012).

Ayesha has a BA (honors) in Economics from Harvard University, an MS in Operations Research from Columbia University and is completing her PhD on urban information infrastructures at the London School of Economics.

She is on the Board of Advisors for Humanity+, a Fellow at the Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies and a Non-Resident Senior Fellow at the Strategic Foresight Initiative at Atlantic Council. Ayesha is Founder & Chairman of Applied Skills, a provider of digital platforms and e-learning content for corporations.The company’s flagship platform SmartWork provides cloud-based skills training and assessment. She is also Co-Founder & Chairman of Factotum, a boutique content marketing agency that creates thought leadership branding for companies and governments. She is also an Adviso

  • Education
    • Harvard University
    • Columbia University