Opening up ...
Having been exposed to a few too many episodes of The Handmaids Tale recently. Not for one second do I forget the enormous privilege I have in being able to write freely for you right now, from my own home, using a laptop, having digital skills. Like childhood poverty, the digital divide massively disrupts learning, and is another one of the greatest, avoidable, tragedies of this century, ones we must all seek to resolve. This absolute privilege of living, working, and using digital tools to educate myself, as an independent female in the 21st century, never escapes me.
The outcome of today, will transform the function and momentum of education and technology-enhanced learning [TEL] for generations to come. Inevitably, as education and academia open up, so too will digital learning landscapes for minorities, women, accessibility communities, LGBTQ people, and all other disadvantaged groups in society. AI-led learning, Transhumanism, Nanotech, and other remarkable forms of technology for enhancing the human experience, can and will make the world a better place.
As an extraordinarily passionate advocate of Open Education, Open Education Resources (OERs) and Open Educational Practices, and Pedagogies (OEPs) I, like you reading this, have the potential to dramatically reshape the future of learning for EVERYONE. Yes everyone. I have always felt every individual deserves the right to reach their academic potential, whatever form hat may be for them. If it is a few GCSEs fab! If it is an Apprenticeship brilliant! A Doctorate in rocket science amazing!
Let us not discriminate, or be intimated by the traditional elitism, which has historically haunted institutions of academia. Let’s blast open the doors of possibility at Oxford, crack Harvard’s code, and deliver excruciatingly exciting, and extraordinarily lifechanging, forms of digital learning, which take the next generation to the cosmos and beyond. THIS is exactly what opening up education and running effective social learning communities, and communities of inquiry, practise, can do for us. Especially, for women of colour, and women in STEM.
There is always so much we can do to help one another.
Let’s start now. Being kind. Sharing knowledge.
Only together can we succeed. Only together do we win.
So… as far as I’m concerned, it’s ‘Lead, Follow, or Get out the way’ – All the way.
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You know what they say about cyber security…
Cyber security is like underwear: don’t let people see it, change it often and don’t share with strangers. Perhaps an unheard-of joke, but a very common one amongst cyber security professionals and it has been creeping its way into how a company approaches its security. The four words that should describe an organisations cyber defences; ‘efficient, evolving, integrated and necessary.’ There is no shortage of providers advertising that this is what they can supply and companies’ now holding their hands up admitting it is what they need. However, what a company wants, and needs are two very different things, and it is the difference between a multi-million budget spend or some minor but effective internal changes. The thirst for new technology is making organisations even more complex, and at the current rate it is progressing, there is a lot of opinion on the necessity for trendy technology and what will create the perfect formula to ‘streamline, accelerate and strengthen.’
Day 1: Social Housing Annual Conference 2020 and HOMES UK - "A virtual day of inspiration"
Having attended several Social Housing Annual Conferences in my 15 years working in the sector both in Harrogate and in Manchester, this years conference was always going to be different. Getting up this morning and not having to travel was different and then the thought of not being able to catch up and have a coffee and a chat with ex colleagues and friends was always going to be a little different. I need not have worried as Day 1 once again re-affirmed my love for the sector, its people and how Social Housing is making a huge difference to the lives of people across the country.
Part 2: Failing spectacularly makes for rapid learning
So, what do I know about failing spectacularly and it as the salve for our species, not just in business but in life generally?… A fair bit is the answer. Only through failing (spectacularly) is a muscle then built to BE better, to DO better and to COME BACK stronger… Whilst many of us have had a rough and jading year, I am always also mindful of those who are less fortunate. Those for whom every day is like ‘365-COVID-19’ days, crammed into one 24hr battle. Endless trails and the wearying sighs of an exhausted, collective human spirit, hellbent on survival.