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Author: Sofia Pardo, Leading Researcher at ideasLAB | August 8th, 2012

In May 2012 the World Bank embarked in a partnership project with Education Impact, the Anytime Anywhere Learning Foundation and ideasLAB to launch a one week online festival around 1 to 1 initiatives in Latin-America. The primary objective of the World Bank in undertaking the IDEASFESTIVAL project was to develop and implement a knowledge sharing and innovation initiative for two of the well-known South American 1 to 1 computing initiatives, Plan Ceibal in Uruguay and Conectar Igualdad in Argentina. The project aimed to leverage international experiences and share the experiences from these initiatives globally. The focus was placed on strengthening the educational dimension, assessment of impact and reach of benefits to all by engaging both international experts and practitioner networks from which ‘on-the-ground’ lessons and experiences were drawn.

The IDEASFESTIVAL was housed in Ning and reached over 300 participants (including policy advisors and school leaders) from 28 different countries with a total of 565 comments posted across 10 different discussion topics. These topics included teachers’ professional development, 21st century learning, personalization of learning and assessment, school culture and online safety amongst others. The discussions held were asynchronous to cater for different time zones, and the ability to read and post comments in either Spanish or English resulted in a wide variety of contributions.

The IDEASFESTIVAL project sought to explore the type of format and online platform best suited for the goals outlined, its effectiveness and the nature and quality of the knowledge sharing achieved. As an exploratory project the World Bank was interested in trialling a different approach to engaging their clients in a way that was not only highly effective, but efficient, sustainable and scalable. The IDEASFESTIVAL project offered a model for agile stakeholder communication, engagement and knowledge construction that will continue to be replicated across a number of topics around the uses of technology in education and learning.

Sofia Pardo is a Leading Researcher at ideasLAB.

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