update 02.08.14

Newsletter for European Research in Learning and Work [L&W]

Edition: August 2014 [www.news.wifo-gate.org][Impressum]

[Conferences] [Networks] [Programmes] [Projects] [Publications]

Dear Colleagues

This is the latest edition of the L&W Newsletter, which will reach you via a mailing list of over 1400 experts in and beyond Europe. As always, it focuses on transnational research activities in the field of human resource development (HRD) and vocational education and training (VET), centred on major categories: conferences, networks, programmes, projects and publications. Many thanks to all who contributed information for this edition of the Newsletter!

Particularly worth noting in this edition are four calls for papers or proposals relating to: the VET Congress in Bern 2015 and the European Seminar on Extension and Education (ESEE) in Wageningen 2015(see Conferences), the journal Empirical Research in VET and the book series Oxford Studies in Comparative Education (see Publications), and an open survey on the professional identity of coaches (see Projects). Also not to overlook: a thematic issue on learning regions (see Publications/thematic issue) and a new edition of Who's who in transnational European VET and HRD research (see Networks).

Should you prefer to read the current Newsletter edition online, you can find it underAugust 2014 on the website (www.news.wifo-gate.org). And please pass the Newletter on to your own colleagues and networks - thanks! The next edition of the Newsletter will appear in early October 2014. You are invited to submit short pieces of news (texts of 100 to 200 words, without attachments, but including links to web pages) - please by 30 September 2014 at the latest!

With best wishes
Sabine Manning
Research Forum WIFO
Editor of the L&W Newsletter 


Lessons from History? NECE Conference 2014

"1914-2014: Lessons from History? Citizenship Education and Conflict Management", NECE (Networking European Citizenship Education) Conference, 16-18 October 2014, Vienna (Austria) [Info]
One hundred years after the start of the First World War, that 'great seminal catastrophe of the 20th century' (George F. Kennan), the NECE initiative is organising its annual conference in Vienna. At the focus of the conference will be the current crises and conflicts inside and outside Europe. Internationally renowned experts, such as Aleida Assmann, Philipp Blom and Ivan Krastev have already confirmed their participation and will enter into a dialogue with the participants. Heinz Fischer, President of the Republic of Austria, will open the conference on 17 October. The 2014 NECE Conference will address challenges in Europe against the background of its history of war and conflict in the 20th century. It will ask how citizenship education can deal with the great variety of conflicts. These include conflicts at Europe's periphery (Russia, Ukraine, Egypt) and the influx of refugees on the shores of the Mediterranean. Inside Europe, political and social conflicts in the wake of the economic crisis have led to a serious loss of trust in the European project. The 2014 NECE Conference offers a platform for pursuing current issues in citizenship education in Europe.
(Posted by Maria Hoffmann <hoffmann@lab-concepts.de>)

Open call for VET and L&D researchers and practitioners
EAPRIL conference in Nicosia (Cyprus) on 25-28th November 2014
The European Association on Practitioner-based Research on Improving Learning (EAPRIL) is organizing a parallel conference programme on Learning & Development, alongside its well established programme on Education & Learning (E&L). EAPRIL strives to close the gap between researchers and practitioners in both fields. While the E&L programme has a strong focus on VET, the L&D programme covers the detection of employees' learning needs, the measurement of quality and impact of learning at the workplace, and the development and validation of systems for employees' accreditation and evaluation. Researchers are welcomed to share their research projects with VET teachers and L&D representatives from well-known companies. Practitioners are invited to share their best practices in dialogue with researchers in the field. As a result, EAPRIL differs from other conferences by its highly interactive formats and crossover between research and practice. Various keynote speakers are invited, e.g. Prof. Dr. Stephen Billett, editor-in-chief of Vocations & Learning, and Mr. Stefaan van Hooydonck, dean of Philips Lighting University. Furthermore, the first European Learning Compass will be presented, developed by EAPRIL in cooperation with Maastricht University. Submission links: Education & Learning and Learning & Development.
(Info from Inneke Berghmans <Inneke.Berghmans@ppw.kuleuven.be>)

Call for Papers: Developing Skills across Institutional Boundaries
4th Congress on Research in Vocational Education and Training, Swiss Federal Institute for Vocational Education and Training SFIVET, Bern/ Zollikofen, Switzerland, 25-27 March 2015[Link]
About the congress: "Developing Skills across Institutional Boundaries" is a key topic for vocational education and training (VET). It includes teaching and learning across different learning locations, the permeability of education institution boundaries over the course of one's life and, from a comparative point of view, the development of skills in (inter)national institutional arrangements. Further information: www.vet-congress.sfivet-switzerland.ch
(Posted by Carmen Baumeler <Carmen.Baumeler@ehb-schweiz.ch>)

Call for Papers: ESEE 2015
Wageningen University, the Education and Competence Studies group (www.wageningenur.nl/ecs), will organize the next European Seminar on Extension and Education (ESEE)April 28 - May 1, 2015. ESEE 2015 will be organized in conjunction with the AIAEE conference, which will take place on the same dates at the same location, the new Campus of Wageningen University in the Netherlands. Participants will be free to move from ESEE to AIAEE sessions and the other way round, as they like. The call for proposals can be found via the following link: http://www.esee2015.nl/ As you will see, there are various formats for proposals, such as regular paper proposals and symposium proposals. Proposal submission and conference registration will be open between September 1 to October 1 2014. So the deadline for submitting proposals is October 1st 2014. We expect a large response to our call for proposals, and would like to see yours included. Hoping to see you in Wageningen in 2015 for this conference, and with warm regards from the Netherlands, also on behalf of the members of the Scientific Steering Committee and the local Organizational Committee!
(Posted by Martin Mulder <martin.mulder@wur.nl>)

NOTE: Forthcoming and recent events related to European research in work and learning are listed on the WIFO Conference page [www.conferences.wifo-gate.org]. 
[Back to Newsletter]


Update on VET & Culture workshop in Tanzania

"VET beyond European conceptions: Approaches and challenges for East African VET", Mzumbe University, Tanzania - 16th to 18th September 2014
This workshop will bring together researchers, academicians and all other VET and culture network members for the first time in Tanzania at Mzumbe University. We anticipate outstanding presentations from participants that will advance adult and vocational education in East Africa and worldwide. The workshop draft programme and the accepted abstracts are available for downloading on the network website [Mzumbe workshop]. Specific schedules for presentation will be provided later in the updated programme. Contact: Matthias Vonken (Matthias.vonken@uni-erfurt.de).
(Info received from Matthias Vonken via VET & Culture mailing list)

Who's who in transnational European VET and HRD research
The latest edition of the Directory of Professional Contacts (www.dpc.wifo-gate.org), edited by the Research Forum WIFO, has just been released. This serves as a Who's who, offering up-to-date information on more than 200 contacts across 30 countries in the field of transnational European VET and HRD research. Each person included in the DPC is both a producer of transnational research and an active transnational networker. The criteria for inclusion in the DPC and and the references to individual professional work are explained in the introduction. They relate to evidence of transnational activities presented in WIFO resources of European collaboration such as the Bookshelf, Overview of articles, Conference page, ECER VETNET Proceedings and Overview of HRD conference papers, Networks at a glance and Overview of projects. While these web resources have been developed over a long period, they cannot of coursed be regarded as complete. Colleagues are therefore welcome to provide further data with regard to their professional activities. The DPC will be updated continuously while European collaboration in VET and HRD research is in progress.
(Contributed by Sabine Manning)

NOTE: References to research networks in the field of European work and learning are available on the WIFO page Networks at a glance [www.networks.wifo-gate.org]. Major online resources related to European research networks include the ECER VETNET Proceedings (www.ecer-vetnet.wifo-gate.org) offering a complete and up-to-date collection of conference papers submitted since 1998, and the Overview of selected HRD conference papers (www.ehrd-papers.wifo-gate.org).
[Back to Newsletter]


NOTE: Contributions are welcome for the next edition of the Directory of Doctoral Dissertations (www.ddd.wifo-gate.org), provided as part of the WIFO Gateway, which focuses on European research in the field of vocational education (VET) and human resource development (HRD). Please provide information on expected or newly completed doctoral dissertations investigating issues of HRD, VET or work-related adult education, according to the following pattern: 1*Theme of dissertation (original language AND English); 2*Year of (expected) completion or publication; 3*Author (name and email address); 4*Tutor (name and email address); 5*Institution of tutor (name and home page). Contributions should be posted by email to the editor (sm@wifo-gate.org).

[Back to Newsletter]


LACE - Learning Analytics Community Exchange project

Learning analytics (LA) and educational data mining (EDM) offer a valuable source of policy evidence but may also help to teach and assess 21st century skills. The main aim of the LACE - Learning Analytics Community Exchange project (www.laceproject.eu) is to capture and assess key issues and problems as they arise. LACE partners are passionate about the opportunities afforded by current and future views of learning analytics (LA) and educational data mining (EDM), but we are concerned about missed opportunities, undesirable consequences of misapplication, investment funding failing to realise value, market failure, etc. LACE is our response, a project to reduce risk and to increase benefit through an approach that accounts for the necessary unity of research, policy and practice. This is the first newsletter of the project. 
(Info received via EDEN Newsflash - Special issue, June 2014)

Survey on the professional identity of coaches
This is an invitation to take part in an international research study on how the professional identity of coaches is forged, moulded and maintained both by people who move into the profession and by experienced practitioners.  By 'coaching profession' the researchers mean anyone involved in the practice of coaching, whether paid or unpaid, internal to an organisation or external, a member of a coaching association or unaffiliated. The study is being undertaken by the Universities of Greenwich and of Surrey (UK) and is fully supported by the EMCC (European Mentoring and Coaching Council). The researchers would be really grateful if you could answer the 34 questions by following the survey link. This should take about 10 minutes to complete. If you have any questions or would like further information, please do not hesitate to email our research officer Catherine Farrant on <c.a.farrant@greenwich.ac.uk>.
PS: Our 4th Mentoring and Coaching Research Conference ended on 27 June 2014. The research papers from the conference have now been published in printed and eBook format and are on sale from our online bookshop at www.EMCCbooks.org.
(Info received via EMCC Research Spotlight: July 2014)

NOTE: Contributions are invited to update the Overview of European research projects [www.projects.wifo-gate.org], provided as part of the WIFO Gateway. The overview focuses on transnational research projects, mainly supported by EU programmes, in the areas of human resource development, vocational education, work and learning. Please send the following information to the editor (sm@wifo-gate.org):  (A) exact title and acronym (short name) of the project; (B) name and email address of the coordinator or main contact; (C) address of the website (or info page/ flyer) of the project. Contact: Sabine Manning
[Back to Newsletter]


Call for submissions: Empirical Research in Vocational Education and Training
Empirical Research in Vocational Education and Training is open for submissions of high quality empirical work in all fields of VET from basic VET to continuous or adult learning. Empirical Research in Vocational Education and Training is a peer-reviewed journal published by SpringerOpen. The journal covers a broad range of topics in the VET field from all relevant scientific disciplines. The journal therefore has an international pluridisciplinary editorial board and also an advisory board with leading international academics in the fields of pedagogy, psychology, sociology and economics. For further information or to submit an article please visit http://www.ervet-journal.com
(Posted by Maria Cattaneo <maria.cattaneo@skbf-csre.ch> on behalf of Stefan Wolter)

Call for proposals: Oxford Studies in Comparative Education
Oxford Studies in Comparative Education is a well established series of studies in comparative education now comprising 42 books, with others currently in production (a full list can be found here). The Series Editor, Professor David Phillips, is always interested to receive proposals for future volumes. Proposals should include a title, a one-page rationale, and suggested or actual contributors, together with brief abstracts of their papers. They should be sent to david.phillips@education.ox.ac.uk
(Posted by David Phillips via <mailout@symposium-books.co.uk>)

A handbook on work-based learning
Work-based learning: a handbook for policy makers and social partners in ETF partner countries. Richard Sweet [Details; Handbook (pdf)]
This handbook has been written to help policy makers and social partners - organisations that represent employers and employees - to understand some of the ways in which learning in the workplace can be encouraged and how its quality can be improved. It is also intended to help them to understand some of the ways that such learning can be organised in a structured way so that it benefits learners, enterprises and employees, and so that it provides wider benefits for the labour market and the economy as a whole. The handbook deals with nine topics: (1) why work-based learning matters; (2) features of middle- and low-income countries that should be taken into account when thinking about work-based learning programs; (3) the different types of work-based learning programs, and what should be considered when choosing between them; (4) the relationship between work-based learning and learning that takes place in classrooms; (5) some of the ways in which work-based learning programs can be started and expanded; (6) how to make sure that work-based learning programs are of high quality; (7) how to assess and recognise work-based learning; (8) financing work-based learning; and (9) governing and managing work-based learning programs.
(Posted by Richard Sweet <richard@sweetgroup.org>)

Research report on Qualifications Frameworks
Barbara Hupfer, Georg Spöttl. Qualifications Frameworks and the Underlying Concepts of Education and Work - Limits and Perspectives, Institut Technik und Bildung (ITB), Universität Bremen, Mai 2014. ITB Research Reports 55 [Details]
Apart from the European Qualifications Framework, further qualifications frameworks have meanwhile been developed and implemented on a national level by all Member States of the European Union. Nevertheless there is another level of discussion dealing with the question whether self-related qualifications frameworks should be developed and implemented. The pros and cons for such frameworks are manifold. This field of controversy is highlighted in the present research report, and conclusions are drawn for further discussion.
(Contributed by Georg Spöttl <spoettl@uni-bremen.de>)

Promoting workforce excellence
Viola Katharina Klotz, Stephen Billett and Esther Winther. Promoting workforce excellence: Formation and relevance of vocational identity for vocational educational training. Empirical Research in Vocational Education and Training 2014, 6:6 [Details]
Vocational learning comprises more than factual knowledge and procedures; the development of a vocational identity is a key aspect and outcome of vocational education provisions and assumed to play an integral role in how students learn and perform. Despite the salience of vocational identity, however, the processes that contribute to its formation are far from fully understood. It is unclear whether and which elements of vocational education and training provision shape this process and if and to what degree forms of identity really support the actual vocational performance of a vocational learner. This study seeks to provide a deeper understanding of the circumstances that enable different forms of identity to develop and how they direct learning and workplace effort. Using structural equation modeling with data from 504 vocational learners and correlation analysis with data from 187 industrial apprentices, this article proposes a model to account for key influences and the impacts of vocational identity formation for the commercial sector. The results indicate that vocational identity mediates and is closely aligned to the development of vocational engagement and competence. A free career choice and the provision of maximal functional integration into operating processes at the workplace are key factors underlying identity formation.
(Contributed by Viola Klotz <Viola.Klotz@wiwi.uni-paderborn.de>)

Thematic issue on learning regions
The following contributions(*) are related to the thematic issue of the Hungarian Educational Research Journal Vol 4, No 3, on learning regions, edited by Magdolna Benke & Tamás Kozma [online issue]
(Initial info received from PASCAL International Observatory Site Digest for 15/07/2014)

* Introduction - Magdolna Benke
The authors of the thematic issue present certain distinct periods and phases of the history of the learning region, thereby drawing our attention to different aspects and activities related to the learning region concept. All the concepts of the learning region theories emphasize the importance of partnership and co-operation between stakeholders, the key role of universities as innovation partners, the utilization of local knowledge and the support of bottom-up activities. Thus the concept of the learning region easily became a flagship of both university-based region/city development activities and the lifelong learning movement, and offered an appropriate environment for research projects targeting local development with a wide range of regional instruments. 
The Hungarian Educational Research Journal (HERJ) is an international journal focusing on current ideas and themes in educational research. HERJ publishes academic, scholarly writings, only in English. It is the official journal of the Hungarian Educational Research Association (HERA). HERJ reflects educational research in Europe, our main focus being on Central Europe. The journal welcomes reports on surveys and comparative, experimental, historical and theoretical studies - both quantitative and qualitative perspectives. HERJ research papers are peer-reviewed through double-blind refereeing. 
(Contributed by Magdolna Benke <magdolna.benke@gmail.com>)

* Learning regions for local innovation - Barry Nyhan [Article]
In this chapter, a 'learning region' is defined as a region or locality where people learn to cooperate  to carry out innovative actions. Thus, the term 'learning' is understood in its widest sense as a means to innovation. Indeed, in a learning region 'learning' and 'innovation' are two sides of the same coin. However, while learning as understood above is much broader than the learning taking place in traditional educational and training institutes, the latter are required to play a key role in promoting learning regions, providing leadership, fostering  networks and facilitating different kinds of learning - social, business and technological. A good deal of this chapter  is devoted to discussing ways in which education and training institutes have promoted different kinds of  learning regions. The chapter shows how extra-curiculum programmes and research and development projects became vehicles for cooperative learning for innovation. It also illustrates how universities can support innovation  through undertaking accompanying research and providing expert 'scientific' knowledge. 
(Contributed by Barry Nyhan <barrynyhan@gmail.com>)

* Learning cities 2020 - Michael Osborne [Article]
This article provides a brief overview of historic work in the field of Learning City development. It then proceeds to highlight two contemporary strands of work. The first is the initiative of UNESCO’s Institute for Lifelong Learning (UIL) in establishing the International Platform of Learning Cities. The second is the work of the PASCAL Observatory, currently manifested in the Learning Cities 2020 programme.
(Abstract by Michael Osborne <Michael.Osborne@glasgow.ac.uk>)

* Cooperation between vocational education and training and enterprises: The role of learning networks as elements of regional innovation systems - Ludger Deitmer [Article]
The European landscape of regional innovation cooperation under VET and enterprises is highly differentiated. Some regions are recognised as genuine "learning regions" with strong cooperation under stakeholders from VET, university and enterprises. Other regions remain underdeveloped - partly because regional policies are not triggering and supporting such regional innovation potentials or because key stakeholders are involved in conflicts with each other. The article provides insights into the initial development of networks. As a characteristic example, the article examines the Bremen regional programme Work and Technology and examples of influential networks. Finally, some lessons for the management of regional networks will be presented in the light of these cases. As a result, the nature of innovation dialogues under actors, the degree of integration of the approaches, the increase of individual innovative capabilities of the different actors, their work & business process orientation, the diffusion intensity of the regional network into the region and, finally, the potential for improving the (infrastructural) innovative capabilities of a region are seen as key factors.
(Contributed by Ludger Deitmer <deitmer@uni-bremen.de>)

* The Learning Region Initiative - Balázs Németh [Article]
The aim of this paper is to give a thorough insight into the evolution of the learning city-region initiative and connect it to the changing roles of higher education institutions within a frame of third missions of universities so as to promote regional development. Accordingly, this study bridges the conceptual approaches to some recent European researches and initiatives which have aimed at promoting concrete developments in the field, with particular involvement of higher education and its third roles so as to promote learning communities and learning economy. The result of research and development in the field produced projects like LILARA, PENR3L, EuroLOCAL and the recent HEAD-project (Opening Higher Education to Adults), in which the author participated as an expert on adult learning and education with a perspective on university lifelong learning. 
(Contributed by Balázs Németh <nemeth.balazs@feek.pte.hu>)

* The Learning Region: A Critical Interpretation - Tamás Kozma [Article]
The ‘learning region’ discourse emerged from the debates of the neoliberal views of socio-economic and cultural change. These views stressed the overall trends of globalisation which had to transform the traditional economic, social and cultural institutions. In opposition of these views, the ‘learning region’ discourse pointed out the importance of locality. The ‘learning region’ discourse has challenged the globalisation arguments in three dimensions. (a) Market forces work only in the traditional sense (local markets) and lose sense in a global environment. (b) Democratic governance is also a local idea; ‘democracy’ in a globalised world makes no sense. (c) Social networking, communities of practices and similar efforts to use the forces of cooperation for innovation are also bound to localities. Thus the ‘globalisation’ discourse of the 1990s makes only sense with the ‘learning region’ discourse of the 2000s.
(Abstract by Tamás Kozma <kozmat@ella.hu>)

NOTE: Updates on publications provided by the WIFO Gateway include the WIFO Bookshelf [www.books.wifo-gate.org], a collection of references to publications focusing on cross-European issues of work and learning, and "From the Journals" - Overview of articles on cross-European issues in VET and HRD research [www.articles.wifo-gate.org], selected from European and international Journals related to education research [www.journals.wifo-gate.org].
[Back to Newsletter]


Editor of the L&W Newsletter: Dr Sabine Manning, Research Forum WIFO (sm@wifo-gate.org);
Address: Neue Blumenstr. 1, D-10179 Berlin, Germany;
Editions of the L&W Newsletter: six times a year, every two months (at the beginning of February, April, June, August, October, December);
Deadline for contributions to the L&W Newsletter: end of January, March, May, July, September, November;
Circulation of the current L&W Newsletter: about 1200 experts in 40 countries (mostly Europe);
Details and Archive of the L&W Newsletter [www.news.wifo-gate.org].
[Back to Newsletter]

Top of the page
 Editor: Sabine Manning © WIFO