Teachers in Europe believe that creativity is fundamentally important at school
The European Commission has presented the results of the first-ever survey on creativity and innovation in schools. The results show that 94% of European teachers believe creativity is a fundamental competence to be developed at school, and 88% are convinced that everyone can be creative. In order to achieve that, Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) are considered very important among teachers (80%): computers, educational software, videos, online collaborative tools, virtual learning environments, interactive whiteboards, and free online material and courses. These results were presented at the Closing Conference of the European Year of Creativity and Innovation in Stockholm, 16 – 17 December.
An overwhelming majority of teachers believe that creativity can be applied to every domain of knowledge and to every school subject (95.5%). They do not see creativity as being only relevant for intrinsically creative subjects such as the arts, music or drama. According to this research, this is of paramount importance for the development of creative thinking as a transversal skill. Creative learning entails a component of curiosity, analysis, and imagination, accompanied by critical and strategic thinking. However, even when the majority of teachers believe everyone can be creative (88%), and that creativity is not solely a characteristic of ‘eminent’ people (80%), the conditions for favouring creativity are not always available in schools in Europe.On average, half of European teachers believe that creativity plays an important role in their curriculum, and about a quarter consider that it does not. The perception of the role and relevance of creativity in the curriculum varies considerably between countries: 3 in 4 teachers in Italy, Latvia, and the United Kingdom are particularly convinced of the central role that creativity has in their national curricula. In contrast, less than 50% of teachers from Portugal, Spain, Belgium, Slovakia, Slovenia, Germany, Hungary, France and Estonia consider that creativity plays an important role in their national education system.Training in innovative pedagogies or methods seems to be widespread in Europe. Six out of ten teachers declare that they have received training in innovative pedagogies, compared to a lower number of 4 out of 10 teachers who claim to have received training in creativity. Those who state that they received training in ICT in the classroom are only 36%. At a national level, the highest percentages are found in Romania (67%) and Latvia (66%), while he lowest were found in Germany (20%) and Belgium (21%).The first aim of the survey has been to understand how teachers in Europe frame and conceptualise creativity. The second has been to collect information on the support they receive and need to foster students’ creativity. This is the first time that a survey has collected such a high number of teachers’ opinions from 32 European countries. For the purposes of the closing conference on the European Year of Creativity and Innovation, only responses from the 27 Member States of the European Union have been analysed, amounting to a total of 9 460 responses. More in-depth analysis will follow in the course of 2010 but the preliminary results presented already provide an excellent starting point to feed into future educational policy that develops learning and teaching processes in more creative and innovative ways.The survey was launched by European Schoolnet (EUN), a network of 31 Ministries of Education in Europe and beyond, together with the Joint Research Centre’s Institute for Prospective Technological Studies (IPTS) with the support of the European Commission’s Directorate General for Education and Culture.
Wednesday, January 6th, 2010
January 6, 2010
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January 6, 2010
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The post below highlights our failure to comprehend that it is is the Resource Intensity of Mobility RIoM that is the critical issue, not the ‘resource intensity of automobiles’
Two Billion Cars: Coming Soon to Our Planet.
Dave R. Founder and CEO of ClimatePath
Over the break I’ve been reading Daniel Sperling’s book Two Billion Cars, an exploration of how the planet can handle the two billion vehicles that will be in service by 2025.
Is this number inevitable? Sperling says yes: There are over a Billion vehicles today, and 2.4 Billion emerging consumers in China and Indian interested in ‘personal motorization’. He also points out that most automakers are focusing their efforts on building and conquering these new markets. His projections actually show roughly 1.2 Billion cars, another 500 Million trucks/buses, and 500 Million motorcycles and scooters, but the forecasted growth in each segment is still staggering and a little scary.
We clearly live in what Sperling and his co-author call a “gas-guzzler monoculture”. Only 2% of passenger travel in the U.S. is via public transportation, and even in Europe where fuel is expensive and trains plentiful, 80% of travel is via automobile. He calls this car-centric western lifestyle “an extravagant consumer of resources and producer of greenhouse gasses.” ………………..
……………..Unfortunately, he also sees a lot of this higher cost and regulatory action focused primairly on driving automobile and fuel innovation…hybrids, biofuels, lighter cars, and more. Clearly these are needed: the book compares a 1976 Honda accord (2000 pounds, 46 MPG) with a 2008 model (3600 pounds, 29 MPG) to demonstrate the stagnation in innovation related to the resource intensity of automobiles. But two Billion vehicles? Isn’t there a better way for us to plan communities and get around?……………….
full article at http://digg.com/d11Eb0h
January 6, 2010
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Tuesday, January 05, 2010Using Networks to Spread Ideasby Tim KastelleYesterday I talked about some of the benefits and challenges of distributed innovation within organisations. One of the biggest challenges you face when you make everyone responsible for innovation is this – how do you get new ideas to spread throughout the broader group? This is part of what John and I are studying in our major research project at the moment. We have a three year grant to look at innovation networks within project-based firms. As we’re getting further into the research, it is becoming clear that this issue of idea diffusion is one of the biggest problems that these firms face.
Earlier this week, we did a pilot study for a student’s part of the project. Their question concerns how people search within their networks for information that they need. Because we haven’t made a good video talking about this yet, here is Venessa Miemis explaining some of the issues:
So the network facilitates innovation, as well as the diffusion of information – but how? That is what we’re trying to figure out because the ‘how?’ part has generally been treated as a black box. To get at this, we will map networks within four groups of people in one firm that share a knowledge area, but who are spread across a number of different locations. This week, we tested the survey on a small group in the firm, and we learned some interesting things even from this.This is one of the networks that we mapped. It shows the links based on responses to the question ‘who provides me with significant knowledge?’ In this case, we defined significant knowledge as that which was essential for solving a work-related problem. There are a couple of interesting things that we learn from this.
The first is that it is a relatively sparse network. This surprised the group – the manager thought that we wouldn’t learn much from this team because they worked very closely together and they are highly cohesive. Still, even within a highly cohesive team, knowledge is not evenly distributed.
The second issue concerns the diamond formed by the four people in the middle of this network. This group of four was at the core of all of the different networks that we mapped. The surprising thing here is that this structure actually reflects the formal hierarchy of the group pretty closely. Organisational network analysis often shows that the informal networks are quite different from the formal structures of the firm. But that doesn’t appear to be the case here. We’ve actually found this in other parts of our research in other firms as well. So we’re starting to think that in distributed innovation networks, hierarchy is actually more important than we expect it to be. This is still very speculative, but it’s potentially interesting.
The bottom line is that when our innovation efforts are distributed, it is critical to understand the structure of our knowledge-sharing networks.
Article and video clip available at http://digg.com/u1JWGV