Singer and producer will.i.am spoke of the importance of education for success in life, as well as the role of his mother as a guiding force.

In a session at Davos on The 21st-Century Dream, the producer and activist spoke of his hopes for children living in poverty.

“My 21st-century dream is to take all that I’ve earned from music" to teach "kids tomorrow’s skill-sets today.”

will.i.am himself grew up in the Boyle Heights area of Los Angeles – a predominantly working class, low-income neighbourhood – where he remembers queuing for free lunch and food.

“My dream is that the unlikely candidates are a part of the conversation on shaping the world. I want to show the kids in my neighbourhood that they could dream to be Steve Jobs, not just Stevie Wonder, or Michael Dell, not just Michael Jackson.”

will.i.am revealed his optimism for the future, even in a challenging climate.

“I’m super-optimistic. Let’s put our ‘optimism goggles’ on and start early at nine years old and, GO.”

With his i.am.angel Foundation, will.i.am aims to transform the lives of children from deprived areas of the US through education and scholarships.