Professor Devendra Kodwani, Executive Dean of The Open University’s Faculty of Business and Law, will introduce the OU's 50th anniversary inaugural lecture series with a lecture on lifelong learning and the role of universities.
Lifelong learning defines what it means to be human. We learn before we start school. We learn after we leave school and university. We learn to survive. We learn to make sense of life and the universe. We learn to make individual and collective choices. Learning helps meet the challenges we encounter in nature. The complexity of human societies poses its own challenges.
At the core of learning is the human ability to identify patterns and make models of the world around us. We have learnt over time various models of social organisation. From living in hunting gathering groups to villages to Kibbutz to cities and nations. These models of co-existence in turn rely on other models. Some learning needs are imposed on us humans as we develop new tools and techniques. Carpenters had to learn to use electric screw drivers just as doctors had to learn to use stethoscopes and teachers had to learn to use computers. The developments in so called GRIN technologies (genetics, robotics, information technology and nanotechnologies) will affect our work, our physical wellbeing and social order in some fundamental ways.
In this lecture I will reflect on the past of individual and collective learning and the role of universities. Looking to the past and the future, I will then put a spotlight on the present need for lifelong learning and the role of higher education institutes.
I will conclude by addressing the question of how universities currently respond to the need for lifelong learning. I will then propose a framework for discussion on the role of universities and around current online and distance learning technologies and the nature of the lifelong learning provision as it stands.
I look forward to exchanging views with you on what is needed to keep universities at heart of human societies as they navigate and negotiate ever evolving social realities.
Watch the video to hear what Professor Kodwani will cover in his lecture:
Professor Devendra Kodwani joined The Open University in 2004 in Department of Accounting and Finance of FBL. Before 2004 he worked in India at the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad; Gujarat University and the Tolani Institute of Management Studies, Gujarat, India.
Currently he is professor of financial management and corporate governance and Executive Dean of the Faculty of Business and Law and Head of The Open University Business School.
|14:30-15:00||Tea/coffee on arrival|
|15:00-15:40||Inaugural lecture: Back from the future, forward form the past: The journey that is lifelong learning|
|15:40-16:00||Q & A|