Learners as Leaders - Developing Democracy through Change-Oriented Community Education in Ireland

FuturelabAE workshop 1 March 2021 has focused on the topic of democracy. Previously the project consortium organised a workshop on digitalisation.


The workshop Learners as Leaders: Developing Democracy through Change-Oriented Community Education in Ireland was held on 1 March 2021, 10.30 – 13.00 CET

The workshop was aimed at adult educators, practitioners, academics, learners, policy makers and providers.

It showcased the Learners as Leaders change-oriented adult learning methodology, the Irish model of community education, and learner voice activities. This event was delivered as part of the Adult Learners’ Festival 2021 #BetterTogether.

Speakers included Professor Ted Fleming, Professor Jyri Manninen, adult learners and community education practitioners. Participants had explored and engaged in democratic methodology and discussed the values needed to foster an inclusive democratic society.

The workshop was organised by AONTAS and the FuturelabAE project consortium.

Read the article on the workshop: If we don’t learn, we will have no democracy

Presentations at the workshop:

Introduction: Learners’ voices
Ted Fleming, Columbia University: Learners as Leaders, Leaders as Learners: Education for Active Citizenship and Social Change   
Nora Fahy, Roscommon Women’s Network: Case study of change-oriented learning
Jyri Manninen, University of Eastern Finland: Background report for FutureLabAE-project
Francesca Operti, EAEA: FutureLabAE Online Courses


Earlier workshops:

FuturelabAE workshop on adult education and digitalisation 11 December 2019: How can we manage the challenges of digitalisation by using change-oriented adult education?

Adult education and digitalisation workshop was held in Helsinki 11 December 2019. The workshop showcased change oriented adult education practices and tools, and reflected how adult education could take a more proactive role in the digital transformation of our society.

The workshop used interactive methods and digital tools to reflect upon how adult education can help to manage the challenges of digitalisation, and discuss how these practices can be transferred to participants’ organisations and countries.  Participants gained an understanding, what is change-oriented adult education and how to use a change-oriented approach in teaching and learning provision, and how it could be taken into account at the policy level.

The workshop was built around the following questions:

  1. What kind of challenges and problems digitalisation causes for adults, communities and society?
  2. What is change-oriented adult education?
  3. What examples there are of change-oriented adult education?
  4. How can we use change-oriented adult education as a tool to solve these challenges?

To learn more:

Presentations at the workshop:

Jyri Manninen, University of Eastern Finland: Change-oriented adult education
Anne Tastula, Finnish Lifelong Learning Foundation: Science over beliefs in healthcare
Jonas Nakonz, Foraus: Policy kitchen, crowdsourcing policy recipes
(Megan Schaible’s presentation not available)

Methodology of the digitalisation workshop

As an intellectual output of the event we have produced a description of the methodology used in the workshop. The aim of the methodology is to encourage participants to take up the methods and outcomes and transfer them in their home organization, as well as support other organisations to run similar workshops in their own contexts. Even if the whole concept can’t be applied, some of the change-oriented methods could be used.

Methodology of the digitalisation workshop (pdf)

Annex 1. Agenda of the digitalisation workshop (pdf)
Annex 2. Description of Seppo-game (pdf)
Annex 3_Timeout discussion at Futurelab workshop (pdf)
Annex 4. Timeout discussion method

The workshop was organised by the Finnish Lifelong Learning Foundation (KVS) in cooperation with the FuturelabAE project consortium.

Further information on the events in Helsinki:

Workshop participants sitting in tables