TC103-Tech tools and skills for emergency management-screenshot

Tech Change

Reda Sadki Innovation, Interviews, Learning strategy, Video

The Institute for Technology and Social Change is a private company based in Washington, D.C. Its web site offers a course catalogue focused on technological innovation. Timo Luege is a communication specialist who has spent the last seven years working for the humanitarian and development sector, a period during which large-scale disasters intersected with the rapid rise in mobile communication. Starting on Monday, he will be delivering TechChange’s course on technology tools and skills for emergency management for the third time. In this interview he answers the following questions: What will I be able to do after taking the course that I couldn’t do before? Why should my manager pay for this, or at least support me? Why should my staff development or HR people support me to take this course? How will this help me to deliver for my organization – or to find my next job or mission? Humanitarian training …

ULTIMA™ 4: QUEST OF THE AVATAR

Games for health: 14 trick questions for Ben Sawyer

Reda Sadki Interviews

Ben Sawyer is the co-founder of both the Serious Games Initiative (2002) and the Games for Health Project (2004). He is one of the leading experts on the use of game technologies, talent, and design techniques for purposes beyond entertainment. He answered 14 questions by e-mail ahead of his presentation to the IFRC Global Health Team. 1. What is your favorite game? I used to reference an old RPG (role playing game) called Ultima IV. But, in reality, it’s Minecraft. Just such a great achievement and fun to play. 2. What is the worst “serious game” you have ever played? Most of them. 3. What is a game, anyway? A game by definition is a system, defined by rules, where people engage in defined competition to achieve a quantifiable outcome either against an opponent or the system itself. There are many dictionary-style definitions. In reality, a game is a mediated experience. …

City view of Beirut, Lebanon on June 1, 2014. Photo © Dominic Chavez/World Bank

Scaling up critical thinking against extreme poverty

Reda Sadki Events, Interviews, Learning strategy, Writing

In three years, the World Bank’s e-Institute enrolled 50,000 learners through small, tutor-led online courses and webinars. Its first MOOC, run on Coursera’s platform for four weeks, reached 19,500. More MOOCs are in preparation, with the next one, based on the flagship World Development Report, launching on June 30th (details here). However, the need for scale is only one consideration in a comprehensive strategic vision of how learning innovation in all its forms can be harnessed to foster new kinds of leadership and accelerate development. In this candid conversation recorded at the Scaling corporate learning online symposium, I asked Abha Joshi-Ghani, the World Bank’s Director for Knowledge Exchange and Learning, to present some early data points from the Bank’s first MOOC, situating it within a broader history of engagement in distance and online learning. Joshi-Ghani describes the partnership, business and production models for its pilot MOOC. She also shares some early …

The Robot (Education) Lady

Reda Sadki Interviews, Personal

With my eight-year-old son, we are planning to build and program a Lego Mindstorms EV3 this Summer. They are robots that look cool and for which you can code tasks and decisions. So, at Google’s Course Builder workshop, when I heard Jennifer Kay, a computer science professor, explain that she has been using robots (including the Lego ones) for education for years, I couldn’t help but ask for an interview. I’ve been reading The Second Machine Age, which is all about the accelerating pace of technological change and one of its implications, that robots will (sooner than we think) be taking on many tasks that previously required humans to do them, hence my questions around this. However, Jennifer’s work is really focused on using simple robots to teach coding skills to kids now, not think about what the future might look like. You can check out Jennifer’s Educational Robots for Absolute Beginners …

Quick Q&A with George Siemens on corporate MOOCs

Reda Sadki Events, Interviews

Here is an unedited chat with George Siemens about corporate MOOCs. He is preparing an open, online symposium on scaling up corporate learning, to be announced soon. The World Bank and OECD are two international organizations that will be contributing to the conversation. Here are some of the questions we briefly discussed: What is a “corporate MOOC” and why should organizations outside higher education care? By Big Data or Big Corporate standards, hundreds of thousands of learners (or customers) is not massive. Corporate spending on training is massive and growing. Why is this “ground zero” for scaling up corporate learning? How does educational technology change the learning function in organizations? What opportunities are being created? University engagement in MOOCs has led to public debate, taking place on the web, recorded by the Chronicle of Higher Education, and spilling over into the New York Times. So where is the debate on corporate MOOCs going to …

Meet Barbara Moser-Mercer, the lady who did MOOCs in a refugee camp

Reda Sadki Interviews, Video, Writing

I first heard her described as the “lady who did MOOCs in a refugee camp”. It was completely ambiguous what that meant, but certainly sparked my curiosity. Barbara Moser-Mercer is a professor at the University of Geneva and a  cognitive psychologist who has practiced and researched education in emergencies. I finally caught up with her at the Second European MOOC Summit.  

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LSi.io interviews Plan B’s Donald Clark: Universities and humanitarian organizations in the Age of Disruption

Reda Sadki Events, Interviews

Donald Clark is an education innovator with no institutional ties to refrain him from telling it like it is. He answers three questions from LSi.io‘s Reda Sadki: Zach Sims at Davos referred to university brick-and-mortar structures as the “detritus” of a bygone area. Agree or disagree? We all remember Sebastian Thrun’s predictions about the impending concentration of higher education. Why does it feel like it’s just not happening? A key insight about MOOCs is the significance of suddenly connecting millions of adult learners to faculty previously bunkered down at the top of their ivory towers. Can you tell us more about your analysis on the significance of MOOCs? The humanitarian sector faces growing challenges, yet we continue to train like it’s 1899. How would you approach such a ‘wicked’ learning problem? Interview recorded at the Second European MOOC Summit at EPFL in Lausanne, Switzerland on 11 February 2014.

View from the Learning Executive: Reda Sadki

Reda Sadki About me, Interviews

This article was first published by the ASTD’s Learning Executive Briefing. By Ruth Palombo Weiss Q: Why do you think the Red Cross Movement has a deeply rooted culture of face-to-face training for its 13.6 million volunteers? A: There is a deeply rooted culture of face-to-face training at the Red Cross because of our unique brick and mortar network of hundreds of thousands of branch offices all over the world. What drives people to the branches is that they want to learn a skill, such as first aid, disaster risk reduction, and we’re really good at teaching those things. In the future, educational technology might enable us to connect branches to each other. Imagine what the person in Muskogee, Oklahoma, can learn from the Pakistani Red Crescent volunteer who lived through the Karachi, Pakistan flood in 2010, and who participated in the recovery efforts afterward. That sharing of knowledge and skills …

Masooda Bano: the impact of international aid on volunteering and development

Reda Sadki Events, Interviews, Learning design, Video

The negative impact of aid on development has been a recurring and controversial subject in recent years. Drawing on her extensive research in this field, Masooda Bano asserts that there is a strong negative correlation between foreign aid, and voluntary organisations’ ability to mobilise communities. Masooda Bano is a Research Fellow at the Oxford Department of International Development & Wolfson College, University of Oxford, with a DPhil from Oxford and MPhil from Cambridge. Her work focuses on real life development puzzles with a focus on mapping the micro-level behaviour and incentive structures drawing on rich empirical data especially ethnographic studies. Dangerous Correlations: Aid’s Impact on NGOs’ Performance and Ability to Mobilize Members in Pakistan