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Sustaining Communities

August 22nd, 2009 by Graham Attwell

My two week break from blogging is over so it is back to normal service!

And with September fast approaching it is time to turn to the conference season. This year I have limited myself to just three conferences from the many goodies on offer. I will be at the Alt-C conference in Manchester, UK, from 8 to 10 September, at the Second World Congress on the Information Society in Crete from 16 – 18 September and at the European Conference on Education Research from the 28th to the 30th.

As ever we are hoping to organise a few fringe events and experiment with different media. Alt – C features the wonderful F-Alt (Fringe Alt for the uninitiated). This is a free unconferencing series of events, organised through a wiki. And for ECER in Vienna we are hoping to run a series of internet radio programmes under the Sounds of the Bazaar series (more details soon).

That is the ‘unofficial’ stuff. Now on to the official things – papers, symposia and the like. I have tried to develop a series of linked papers / contributions for these events (I am not sure whether it will work) around the themes of Web 2.0, digital identities and Personal Learning Environments.  For the first of the events, Alt C, I am making a presentation as part of the project team from the now finished Jisc Emerge support project. Here is an excerpt from our proposal entitled ‘Emerging practice and institutional change symposium: a user-centred, learning technology R&D support-community network’:

“Questions for institutions are to what extent are they comfortable with ceding certain amounts of control to individuals and to new communities?

For individuals the principal issues are to what extent do they subordinate their autonomy and self-direction to communities, how much do they subordinate and to which communities?

This symposium argues these questions from four perspectives:
– R&D programme support
– Community development
– Social networking applications and platforms
– Shifting centres of control

There will be four short presentations from each of these different perspectives. Each presentation will conclude with a series of open questions and will be followed by opportunities for questions and contributions from participants.  Participants will be invited to consider how these issues impact on their practice and the practice of their institutions.”

I am speaking about Social networking applications and platforms and in the next couple of days will post some thoughts on that theme in this blog. If you are interested in participating in the symposium but are not attending the conference we are planning to ustream the event and to invite questions through Twitter. Watch this space for full details.

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  2. […] Sustaining Communities @GrahamAttwell That is the ‘unofficial’ stuff. Now on to the official things – papers, symposia and the like. I have tried to develop a series of linked papers / contributions for these events (I am not sure whether it will work) around the themes of Web 2.0, digital identities and Personal Learning Environments.  For the first of the events, Alt C, I am making a presentation as part of the project team from the now finished Jisc Emerge support project. via pontydysgu.org […]

  3. […] Sustaining Communities @GrahamAttwell george | August 25, 2009 That is the ‘unofficial’ stuff. Now on to the official things – papers, symposia and the like. I have tried to develop a series of linked papers / contributions for these events (I am not sure whether it will work) around the themes of Web 2.0, digital identities and Personal Learning Environments.  For the first of the events, Alt C, I am making a presentation as part of the project team from the now finished Jisc Emerge support project. via pontydysgu.org […]

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    Barcelona to go Open Source

    The Spanish newspaper, El País, has reported that the City of Barcelona is in the process of migrating its computer system to Open Source technologies.

    According to the news report, the city plans to first replace all its user applications with alternative open source applications. This will go on until the only remaining proprietary software will be Windows where it will finally be replaced with a Linux distribution.

    To support the move, the city will employ 65 new developers to build software programs for their specific needs. they also plan the development of a digital market – an online platform – whereby small businesses will use to take part in public tenders.


    OER18: Open to All,

    The OER18 Conference takes place in Bristol, UK on 18 – 19 April 2018. OER18 is the 9th annual conference for Open Education research, practice and policy. The final keynote has now been announced: Dr Momodou Sallah is Reader in Globalisation and Global Youth Work at the Social Work, Youth and Community Division, De Montfort University.  More about the conference: http://go.alt.ac.uk/2DmsPPu


    Learning about technology

    According to the University Technical Colleges web site, new research released of 11 to 17-year-olds, commissioned by the Baker Dearing Educational Trust, the charity which promotes and supports University Technical Colleges (UTCs), reveals that over a third (36%) have no opportunity to learn about the latest technology in the classroom and over two thirds (67%) admit that they have not had the opportunity even to discuss a new tech or app idea with a teacher.

    When asked about the tech skills they would like to learn the top five were:

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    MOOC providers in 2016

    According to Class Central a quarter of the new MOOC users  in 2016 came from regional MOOC providers such as  XuetangX (China) and Miríada X (Latin America).

    They list the top five MOOC providers by registered users:

    1. Coursera – 23 million
    2. edX – 10 million
    3. XuetangX – 6 million
    4. FutureLearn – 5.3 million
    5. Udacity – 4 million

    XuetangX burst onto this list making it the only non-English MOOC platform in top five.

    In 2016, 2,600+ new courses (vs. 1800 last year) were announced, taking the total number of courses to 6,850 from over 700 universities.


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