Learning Federation Meets in Washington

KMi is playing a key role in the formative stages of the Learning Federation, a proposed government/industry/academic coalition meeting in Washington DC on November 28th and 29th. The two-day brainstorm brings together high-profile representatives from industry, academia, and particularly the Cognitive and Learning Sciences Community, including Hal Abelson, John Anderson, John Seely Brown, Don Norman, Roy Pea, Ben Shneiderman, Roger Schank, Elliot Soloway. I’m representing KMi and The Open University, both as a commentator and presenter and representative of the international and distance learning communities.

The Learning Federation is conceived as “a group of industrial and government organizations that will pool resources to support long-term research in learning science and technology. These organizations will share the cost of research conducted principally in universities and other suitable organizations and supply personnel that will help identify and coordinate the funded research.”

The key movers and shakers behind the initial consortium meeting were Randy Hinrichs (Microsoft Research), Henry Kelly (Federation of American Scientists), Ed Lazowska (University of Washington), Richard Newton (University of California, Berkeley), Raj Reddy (Carnegie Mellon University), Andy van Dam (Brown University), and Rick Adrion (National Science Foundation).

According to an initial document by Hinrichs et. al. “The research effort will be focused on long-term pre-competitive, non-product activities. This might include discoveries in and applications of learning science, pedagogy, course content development, methods of delivery, assessment and evaluation and other aspects of the life-long and distance learning processes. Areas of research important in life-long and distance learning will be determined by a group of experts from university, government, and industry in a two-day workshop to be held November 28-29, 2000 in Washington, D.C. under NSF sponsorship. These topics will form the basis for discussion with potential funding sources in early 2001. The object of the workshop is to produce a written research agenda, an initial list of the top unanswered basic research questions in learning science and technology.”

Related links

Learning Federation

Photo credits

Digital photographs copyright (c) Ben Shneiderman, 2000


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