Digital technologies: Governing or serving educational practice?

(April 20, 2022)

For this our third seminar, we invited professors Sigrid Hartong* from Helmut Schmidt University (HSU) Hamburg and Mathias Decuypere** from KU Leuven, who gave gave a joint presentation in two parts on what algorithms and digital technologies “do” to education and schooling and how a critical understanding about and application of these technologies can be fostered. 

The title of the presentation was Fostering a critical understanding of digital education governance and practices: insights into Edunudge and SMASCH
The lecture provided insights into both ongoing research and transfer activities going on at HSU Hamburg and KU Leuven in the field of digital education governance and practice. These research and transfer activities seek to respond to a pressing need in the field of education to a) develop more specific understandings about the specific operationalities and (realistic) impacts of increasingly elaborated algorithmic technologies, and b) to more strongly include educational practitioners in the co-design of such technologies. Addressing both goals, the first part of the lecture provided insights into ongoing research in the field of 'Edunudge', that is, the growing application of behavioral insights in educational settings, particularly through digital technologies. The second part of the lecture asked how such (and other) scientific knowledge in the field of digital education governance research might be transferred to, and further developed together with educational practitioners, and presented examples from a project in German and Belgian schools. 

*Sigrid Hartong is professor in sociology with a focus on the transformation of governance in education and society at the Helmut Schmidt University (HSU) Hamburg, Germany. Her main scholarly interest is on the growing datafication and digitalization of education policy, governance and practice. She is founder of the initiative Unblack the Box.

**Mathias Decuypere is Assistant Professor at the Methodology of Educational Sciences Research Group (KU Leuven, Belgium). His main interests are situated at the digitization, datafication and platformization of education; and how these evolutions shape distinct forms of educational spaces and times.-

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