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Open for a cause: fostering participation in society and education

The Association for Learning Technology (ALT) and Wikimedia Deutschland are inviting you to an open evening “Education, open participation and democracy: critical reflections” on Nov 27 in the Wikimedia offices in Berlin. Register before Nov 22!

WMDE allgemein

7. November 2019

Education, open participation and democracy: critical reflections

Gemeinsam mit der Association for Learning Technology (ALT) lädt Wikimedia Deutschland am 27. November in die Räume am Tempelhofer Ufer 23-24 ein. Die Veranstaltung “Education, open participation and democracy: critical reflections” wird parallel zur OEB Global Konferenz in Berlin stattfinden. Die Veranstaltungssprache wird Englisch sein, mehr Details in deutscher Sprache sind in unserer ersten Ankündigung im Blog zu finden.

The Association for Learning Technology (ALT) and Wikimedia Deutschland are inviting you to an open evening “Education, open participation and democracy: critical reflections”. The event, inspired by the OER20 Conference theme “The Care in Openness” will focus on the ways in which Openness, individuals and communities can foster a participatory and democratic culture in Open work and in society in general. 

We hope that this event will stimulate discussions that can continue at the OER20 Conference, and encourage participants to consider making a submission for the OER20 Conference.

Recordings now available (Update, 01/20/2020)

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We aim to keep these conversations going online as well. As soon as we have an update regarding the ways to participate remotely, you will find it here in this blog post.

Time, place, and registration

Wednesday, November 27, 2019
5pm – 9pm

Wikimedia Deutschland Offices
Tempelhofer Ufer 23-24
10963 Berlin
Google Maps
Subway: Möckernbrücke (U1 / U3 / U7)

The event’s facilities put a limit on the maximum number of attendees. Registration is free, please use the link below to sign up for the event.

Click here and register by Friday, November 22nd

This event aims to claim and open a space for critical conversations and questions: Who is Open for and who is it open to? How can Open be leveraged as a force for participatory culture in society and education? Which roots of Openness do we need to be especially critical of when we claim that Open is here to save us all from the world of proprietary, industry-driven and techno-solutionist claims around education and participation in society? How do larger narratives around web culture play into the ways in which education, participation and the web are framed? 

We are delighted to have a group of dedicated activists and researchers as guests and contributors to this evening (please scroll down to find more detailed bios and links). If you would like to contribute to this event, please get in touch:

Our preliminary agenda:

5.00 pm Doors open

5.30 pm Welcome and salute to OER20

Nicole Ebber (tbc), Advisor on International Relations at Wikimedia Deutschland

Maren Deepwell, CEO of ALT 

Christian Friedrich, Education and Science Advisor at Wikimedia Deutschland

5.45 pm Short talks

“Principled Pragmatism – Reflections on changing higher education from within” Laura Czerniewicz, Director of the Centre for Innovation in Teaching and Learning, University of Cape Town

“Openness in the age of surveillance – who is watching what we are doing?” Martin Hawksey, Chief Innovation, Community and Technology Officer, Association Learning Technology

“Predicting the future (of open) — the stories that we tell about ’the school of tomorrow” Audrey Watters,  independent scholar and author, best known for her work at hackeducation.com 

6.30 pm Discussion: Open for a cause? Participation in education and society  through the Open

Lorna Campbell, Maren Deepwell and Audrey Watters chaired by Christian Friedrich. We aim to open the discussion for contributions by and exchange with the attendees onsite. 

7.15 pm Closing remarks

Vegetarian snacks and non-alcoholic refreshments

9.00 pm Close of the evening

Our guests and contributors include:

Lorna Campbell

Open education technology, policy & practice at the University of Edinburgh, ALT and Wikimedia UK trustee

Lorna works for the University of Edinburgh’s OER Service within the Learning Teaching and Web Services Directorate. She has a longstanding personal commitment to supporting open education; she founded the Open Scotland initiative and was the driving force behind the Scottish Open Education Declaration, was co-chair of the OER16 Open Culture Conference, and is a regular keynote speaker.  Lorna is also a Trustee of the Association for Learning Technology, and Vice-Chair of Wikimedia UK. Her blog, Open World, features personal reflections on all aspects of open education from a feminist perspective, she regularly live-tweets open education conferences and events at @lornamcampbell, and is an active member of the #femedtech network.

Laura Czerniewicz

Director of the Centre for Innovation in Learning and Teaching (CILT), University of Cape Town in South Africa

Professor Laura Czerniewicz has worked in education in numerous roles including strategist, researcher, educator and publisher. Her research interests include the changing nature of higher education in a digitally-mediated society, changing technological practices and digital inequality. She has also played a key strategic and scholarly role in the areas of blended and online education as well as open education. An NRF-rated researcher, Laura has published widely, both formally and informally. Her research output can be found at  academia.edu and many of her presentations at Slideshare. She can be followed on Twitter at @czernie. For a recent interview with Laura Czerniewicz listen to her podcast.

Maren Deepwell

Chief Executive of ALT, the Association for Learning Technology 

Dr Maren Deepwell has been shaping the direction of education technology and driving the field forward internationally. Maren is a seasoned keynote speaker, conference convener and writes regularly for publications in Higher and Further Education as well as policy development.

With a background in Anthropology, her particular focus is on a critical perspective on the development and future of technology in education, professionalisation and skills in Learning Technology including development of the CMALT accreditation framework and leveraging technology to create greater equity in education.

Recent projects include open policy development, edtech startups and organisational transformation which puts her commitment to open leadership into practice. Her work is bridging Learning Technology discourse across sectors in the UK and internationally.

Christian Friedrich

Education and Science Advisor at Wikimedia Deutschland

Christian Friedrich is the education and science advisor at Wikimedia Deutschland and committed to work towards openness and freedom of education and science. Christian has lead various higher education projects in the context of open connected learning. As Co-Director and Europe Lead Buddy, Christian is also part of the Virtually Connecting community, which aims to provide virtual participation and representation at academic conferences. As an independent consultant, Christian works with organisations to foster change and learning. Within the framework of Towards Openness, Christian co-facilitated various workshops on privacy, security and safety in online learning. Christian blogs erratically at blog.christianfriedrich.org, and tweets as @friedelitis.

Martin Hawksey

Chief Innovation, Community and Technology Officer, Association for Learning Technology

Martin Hawksey’s career began as a learning technologist in the UK Higher Education sector and has gone on to hold advisory roles within the educational technology sector for a number of UK government funded services. In these roles, he has supported staff in the exploration and adoption of innovative approaches to learning and teaching.
Martin has supported a number of open initiatives including the development of ALT’s Open Course in Technology Enhanced Learning (ocTEL),  co-authoring the monthly Virtual Teams blog posts which openly share ALT’s approach to leading distributed organsiations, and creator of TAGS/TAGSExplorer a Twitter visualization tool used by a number of open courses.

Audrey Watters

Education writer at Hack Education, independent scholar and author. 

Audrey Watters is a writer and independent scholar who focuses on education technology – its politics and its pedagogical implications. Although she was two chapters into her Comparative Literature dissertation, she decided to abandon academia, and she now happily fulfills the one job recommended to her by a junior high aptitude test: freelance writer.

She has written for The Baffler, The Atlantic, Vice, Edutopia, Hybrid Pedagogy, Inside Higher Ed, The School Library Journal, and elsewhere across the Web, but she is best known for her work on her own website Hack Education.

Audrey has given keynotes and presentations on education technology around the world and is the author of several books, including The Monsters of Education Technology, The Revenge of the Monsters of Education Technology, The Curse of the Monsters of Education Technology, The Monsters of Education Technology 4, and Claim Your Domain.

She is currently at work on her next book, Teaching Machines, which will be published by MIT Press. Audrey was a recipient of the Spencer Education Journalism Fellowship at Columbia University for the 2017–2018 academic year.


  1. […] und Martin haben wir auch Lorna Campbell, Laura Czerniewicz und Audrey Watters eingeladen. Hier der Link zum Blog Post. Sobald die Aufzeichnungen der Talks und der Diskussion verfügbar sind, werden sie […]

  2. Christian M. Stracke
    20. November 2019 um 08:44 Uhr

    What a pity! I cannot join as I will speak at the OE Global Conference in Milano on Open Education, OER and MOOCs (and much more :-)
    Hope that there will be a continuation: As ICDE Chair in OER I would be happy to collaborate with you in the future.
    Let us discuss how we can have such events on regular basis!
    And last minute invitation (and promotion ;-): You are most welcome to join LINQ 2019 in the exciting Niekée School in Roermond this Friday, 22nd of November 2019! We will talk about (open) innovations in (school) education, see: http://www.learning-innovations.eu
    Looking forward to our future discussion!
    Best wishes

    1. Christian Friedrich
      20. November 2019 um 09:18 Uhr

      Sounds good, have fun at OEglobal and let’s keep in touch!

  3. Bryan N Alexander
    19. November 2019 um 20:30 Uhr

    Looking forward to it!

    1. Christian Friedrich
      19. November 2019 um 22:08 Uhr

      So are we! Glad you will be joining us! Bring a friend or, better, many friends and please make sure to register via the link in this blog post. Thank you!

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