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Collective Capacity Building

Shaping Education and Communication in Knowledge Society

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Edited by Simona Sava, Claudia Borca and Gheorghe Clitan

The theme of Collective Capacity Building (CCB) is a comprehensive one, resonating with the complexity of the knowledge society. Such complexity requires contributions of a wide range of scientists, for a multidimensional understanding. Thus, philosophers, economists, educationalists, sociologists, political scientists, psychologists, scientists from Romania, Germany, Spain, Serbia, Greece, Cyprus, Latvia and Sweden have come together in Collective Capacity Building: Shaping Education and Communication in Knowledge Society. Their choice to discuss current societal challenges in different fields, in a transdisciplinary and interdisciplinary manner, illustrates how communication, education, interaction, identity, science, professionalization and others are (re)shaped nowadays.

As it is increasingly evident that the challenges of a knowledge-based society are more resilient to traditional approaches and the new focus is on how to regulate new skills and capacities, the contributions propose a more stimulating reflection and dialogue on how CCB can foster progress in some of the most intricate educational, social, cultural, geopolitical and economic issues today. In light of this, the contributors have addressed the following questions: How can we define collaboration in communication and educational theory and practice? What are the tools and the rules adopted by CCB in various practical contexts? How can researchers develop their theoretical perspective on CCB after their thorough investigation of current and complex educational issues and societal challenges?

Edited by Katherine Jelly and Alan Mandell

In this multi-faceted case study of one progressive institution of adult higher education, the editors and contributors to the volume lay out significant challenges confronting not just non-traditional post-secondary colleges and universities but all institutions of higher education in today’s rapidly changing context. Contending that non-traditional institutions are especially challenged in these turbulent times, they argue that these organizations’ distinctive academic programs are among the most threatened in the landscape of higher education today.
The 19 essays that make up this volume highlight and examine key creative tensions, rich interplays of emphases and values in higher education, in order to illuminate and address more intentionally the questions that we must address: Can we make constructive use of these tensions? Can we recognize what is at stake? And can we chart a course that will both respond innovatively to rapid change and sustain a vision and the purposes and principles on which that vision rests? Taken as a whole, this volume sheds light on the questions and creative tensions that can, with thoughtful attention, help to keep an alternative, progressive vision of adult higher education alive.

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Edited by Fiona Duguid, Karsten Mündel and Daniel Schugurensky

Since most research on work focuses on paid work, and most literature on education concentrates on schools, it is not surprising that studies on the relations between work and learning emphasize the relations between paid employment and organized education. This unique book deals with an area that has been rarely covered in the literature on work and education: the connections between volunteer work and informal learning.
Through a variety of examples, ranging from the Red Cross to teacher-labourers, from cooperatives to social housing, and from participatory democracy to environmental social movements, this volume examines the learning dimension of volunteer work in different contexts. It also considers the special case of volunteerism among recent immigrants. The case studies analyze three basic types of voluntary organizations: those providing social services, representing local communities and mobilizing for social change.
The chapters include profiles of the actual work their members do and detailed accounts of the learning practices they are engaged in during their work, and the impact of such learning on their personal and professional development. The concluding chapter offers a comparative analysis, practical recommendations and steps for further research.

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Edited by Rosemary Clark, D.W. Livingstone and Harry Smaller

The rise of knowledge workers has been widely heralded but there has been little research on their actual learning practices. This book provides the first systematic comparative study of the formal and informal learning of different professional groups, with a particular focus on teachers.
Drawing on unique large-scale national surveys of working conditions and learning practices in Canada, the book compares teachers with doctors and lawyers, nurses, engineers and computer programmers, as well as other professionals. The class positions of professionals (self-employed, employers, managers or employees) and their different collective bargaining and organizational decision-making powers are found to have significant effects on their formal learning and professional development (PD). Teachers’ learning varies according to their professionally-based negotiating and school-based decision-making powers.
Two further national surveys of thousands of Canadian classroom teachers as well as more in-depth case studies offer more insight into the array of teachers’ formal and informal learning activities. Analyses of regular full-time teachers, occasional teachers and new teachers probe their different learning patterns. The international literature on teacher professional development and related government policies is reviewed and major barriers to job-embedded, ongoing professional learning are identified.
Promising alternative forms of integrating teachers’ work and their professional learning are illustrated. Teacher empowerment appears to be an effective means to ensure more integrated professional learning as well as to aid fuller realization of knowledge societies and knowledge economies.

Challenging Transitions in Learning and Work

Reflections on Policy and Practice

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Edited by Peter Sawchuk and Alison Taylor

In the past two decades, advanced capitalist countries have seen sustained growth in labour market participation along with a growth in the number of jobs workers tend to have in their working lives. Over a slightly longer period we also see that participation in both formal educational attainment and a range of non-compulsory learning/training has grown. However, labour market discrimination based on gender, age, disability and race/ethnicity remains a serious issue in virtually all OECD countries.
‘Challenging Transitions in Learning and Work’ presents a critical and expansive exploration of learning and work transitions within this context. These transitions are challenging for those enmeshed in them and need to be actively challenged through the critical research reported. The impetus for this volume, its conceptual framing, and much of the research emerges from the team of Canadian researchers who together completed case study and survey projects within the ‘Work and Lifelong Learning’ (WALL) network. The authors include leading scholars with established international reputations as well as emerging researchers with fresh perspectives. This volume will appeal to researchers and policy-makers internationally with an interest in educational studies and industrial sociology.

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Edited by D.W. Livingstone, Kiran Mirchandani and Peter Sawchuk

Concern with learning throughout life has become pervasive in market-driven societies. Will most workers need to become more continuous learners in a new knowledge-based economy or will much of their learning be ignored or devalued in relation to their work? These papers critically assess dominant views of learning and work. The book is unique in examining changing relations between learning and work in terms of unpaid work and informal learning as well as paid employment and formal education. The book is organized in terms of five basic themes. GENERAL PERSPECTIVES assesses learning and work relations in the “new economy” in terms of different concepts of learning and work and contending theories of education-employment relations. SOCIAL JUSTICE looks at uneven dislocating effects of globalization on gender discrimination in information technology work, working conditions in the public sector, student transitions to work, and disability in work and learning. PRECARIOUS EMPLOYMENT analyzes the general working conditions and learning constraints of temporary, part-time workers, with a particular focus on call centre and garment workers. APPRENTICESHIPS offers an international review of the nature and future trajectory of apprenticeship systems and a case study of the challenges of a high school trades preparation program. MULTIPLE LITERACIES identifies needed abilities including coping with diverse cultures, languages and environmental change, as well as use of information technologies.
The material in this volume emerges from the conference on “The Future of Lifelong Learning and Work” held at the University of Toronto in June, 2005. This conference was one of the cluminating efforts of the Work and Lifelong Learning international research network based in Canada. The contributions were produced by members of this network as well as associates of the Centre for the Study of Education and Work at OISE/UT, and are complemented by the work of selected, leading international voices in the field of learning and work.