We are excited to release further details of the programme for the launch of the report on Education for the Most Marginalised post-COVID-19: Guidance for governments on the use of digital technologies in education which will be from 2pm-4pm GMT on Friday 18th December. Please register here to receive joining instructions. Further details about the initiative are available here.
Amina Umohoza (Digital Opportunity Trust, Youth Leadership Advisory Board, Rwanda; CEO of Saye Company and the Founder of Dukataze)
Helen Crompton (Associate Professor Teaching and Learning, Old Dominion University)
Insights on the report’s Guidance Notes:
Ensuring resilient connectivity: Christopher Yoo (John H. Chestnut Professor of Law, Communication, and Computer and Information Science at the University of Pennsylvania Law School, and the founding director of the Center for Technology, Innovation, and Competition), Leon Gwaka (University of Pennsylvania) and Müge Haseki (University of Pennsylvania)
Keeping Safe and Local Context: Azra Naseem (Director, Blended and Digital Learning, Aga Khan University, Pakistan)
Small Island States and the importance of sustainable electricity: Javier Rua (former Director of Public Policy for Sunrun; former Chairman, Puerto Rico Telecommunications Regulatory Board)
The importance of OER and Creative Commons: Paul West (Senior Education Adviser, West and Associates; and South Africa Chapter Lead, Creative Commons)
The final programme, including any revisions will be available by 16th December.
Speakers will talk for a maximum of 5 minutes each, enabling there to be a lively and forthright discussion afterwards. We welcome all those committed to empowering the poorest and most marginalised through the use of digital technologies in education to join the conversation, and work together to implement the report’s recommendations.
Funded by the FCDO and World Bank through the EdTech Hub.
The meeting was designed to set in motion all of the activities and processes for the Inception Phase of the eight-year Hub, focusing especially on
The Hub’s overall vision
The work of our three main spheres of activity
Our governance structure
Our theory of change
Our ethical and safeguarding frameworks
Our communication strategy, and
Our use of Agile and adaptive approaches
The Hub aims to work in partnership to “galvanise a global community in pursuit of catalytic impact, focusing on evidence so we can collectively abandon what does not work and reallocate funding and effort to what does”. Moreover, it is “committed to using rigorous evidence and innovation to improve the lives of the most marginalised”.
Above all, as the pictures below indicate, this meeting formed an essential part in helping to build the trust and good working relationships that are so essential in ensuring that this initiative, launched in June 2019, will achieve the ambitious goals that it has set.
The new Hub aims to undertake and promote the highest quality of comparative and longitudinal research at the interface between technology and education, and then share the findings widely so that everyone is better aware about how technology can best serve the learning interests of the poorest and most marginalised. This builds in part on the UNESCO Chair in ICT4D’s long established experience on technology and learning, dating back to Tim’s leadership of the UK Prime Minister’s Imfundo initiative (2001-2004) creating partnerships for IT in education in Africa, our DelPHE and EDULINK funded collaboration with African universities, the wider work of the World Economic Forum and UNESCO Partnership for Education initiative between 2007 and 2011, and the cohort of PhD students doing research at the UNESCO Chair in ICT4D on technology and learning in Africa in the latter 2000s , including David Hollow and Marije Geldof.
We are all very excited to be a part of this new initiative, which will be the largest ever education and technology research and innovation programme designed specifically to improve teaching and learning, especially in poorer countries. It is a clear example of the ways through which research undertaken within the UNESCO Chair in ICT4D is having real global impact, and is the second £20 m grant to have been awarded to consortia that include members of the Chair in the last six months, the other being the UKRI GCRF South-South Migration, Inequality and Development Hub.
Tim Unwin, our Chairholder of the UNESCO Chair in ICT4D, was recently in Macau and Shenzhen, China, in his role as a member of the Advisory Board of the United Nations University Computing and Society Institute. During this visit, colleagues at the Institute had arranged for him to participate in Teledifusão de Macau (TDM)’s prime time Talk Show with Kelsey Wilhelm. This was a great opportunity to share some of his current thinking about the interface between digital technologies and humans!
The show is now available on YouTube, and begins with an overview of the current state of ICT for development, before going on to discuss
ways through which people with disabilities can be empowered through the use of technology,
the importance of new technologies being inclusive, because otherwise they lead to new inequalities,
working “with” the poorest and most marginalised rather than for them,
the role of new technologies such as AI and blockchain in serving the interests of the rich rather than the poor,
cyborgs and the creation of machine-humans and human-machines, and finally
some of the ethical issues that need to be discussed if we are to balance the benefits of new technologies whilst limiting their harm.
The Internet Society has just published a new report on Internet Access and Education. This makes interesting reading. In summary it argues that “The Internet has immense potential to improve the quality of education, which is one of the pillars of sustainable development. This … briefing outlines ways in which policymakers can unlock that potential through an enabling framework for access to the Internet. It sets out five priorities for policymakers: infrastructure and access, vision and policy, inclusion, capacity, and content and devices. Together these represent key considerations for unlocking access to the Internet in support of education”.
They will be holding an online seminar on 6th December to discuss these issues, which we be moderated by Ben Petrazzini, IDRC, and will include the following speakers:
Tomi Dolenc, Academic and Research Network (ARNES), Slovenia
Miguel Brechner, Ceibal Plan, Uruguay
Dirk Hastedt, IEA, Netherlands & Germany
Shireen Yacoub, Edraak.org, Jordan
Patrick Muinda, Ministry of Education and Sports, Uganda