The theme of this years annual Cetis Conference at the University of Bolton is Building the Digital Institution, and once again there is a strong focus on openness. In addition to Audrey Watters keynote, and parallel sessions on open knowledge (Open Knowledge: Wikipedia and Beyond) and open source (Web Services or Cloud, Open Source or outsourced?), there are two open education sessions:
Open Education: From Open Practice to Open Policy is very much a natural progression from open education parallels we’ve run at previous Cetis Conferences. The first open education session we ran at the Cetis Conference was the UK OER Scoping Session way back in 2008 and since then we’ve progressed through the OER Technical Roundtable, Building Collections of OERs, to Open Practice and OER Sustainability, so it seemed natural that this year’s session should focus on moving from open practice to open policy.
In addition to looking at the emergence of open policy and practice across the UK and further afield, we’ll be exploring questions relating to the potential benefits of these developments. What, if any, is the value of open education policy? Do countries, regions and institutions really need open education policies? Should government agencies play a role in the development of open education policy? Are there conflicts between commercial interests and market forces, and open education policy and practice? How can open education initiatives be nurtured and sustained?
We’ve also decided to throw a little theoretical exercise in to the mix, we’re challenging session participants to develop (or not) open education policy for a hypothetical country (we’ll come up with a name later!). We’ve lined up an eclectic range of speakers who will be presenting their experience of open education practice and policy and arguing for a particular way forward for our new country. Session participants will be able to discuss and debate the merits (or not) of the proposed approaches and decide on a way forward. Participants are free to appoint themselves as government ministers, lobbyists, militants, military dictators, etc and speakers may be encouraged to wear national dress. Li and I will be assuming the roles of Kirsty Wark and Jeremy Paxman 😉
Paul Booth, North-West OER Network and Manchester Metropolitan University
Suzanne Hardy, Newcastle University
Tore Hoel, Nordic OER and Oslo and Akershus University College of Applied Sciences
David Kernohan, Jisc
Paul Richardson, Jisc RSC Cymru
Joe Wilson, ALT Scotland SIG and SQA
You can register for the Cetis Conference here and I hope we can look forward to seeing you in Bolton in June!