Fri 25th September 2015 - 16:25

Learn from all, reflect, connect, share openly, don’t reinvent the wheel! - Interview with Denis Crowley (DG EAC)

Interview with Denis Crowley, Head of Unit on Innovation in Education, EIT and MSCA (B.3.) at DG Education and Culture, European Commission



Q1. Two years ago the European Commission launched the Opening Up Education initiative: The goal was to stimulate ways of learning and teaching through ICT and digital content, mainly through the development and availability of OER. How do you see the situation today and the part to be played by Europe?

Digital technologies are changing many parts of our society, including education. Technology has the potential to make learning more open, flexible and accessible.

Open and innovative education and training is one of six priority areas for the EU's education policy over the coming years.

Openness can allow us to transcend barriers and borders. Combating the digital divide and fostering more equal opportunities.

The Digital Single Market initiative, adopted just a few months ago by the Commission highlights the need to boost digital skills and learning across Europe. It looks at how we can deliver the skills and competences needed in a digital society and economy. 


Q2. What do you think should be the role of teachers in the innovative educational process?

The role of teachers is central to the improvement of education systems and in the take up of innovative technology in the classrooms.

For the students, teachers are role-models. By empowering teachers we should encourage them to become digitally confident, change agents and leaders by example

Teachers and students should become active content producers, learning by active participation and inquiry.


Q3. Equity is one of the main challenges for our education systems. How do you think technology can contribute to reduce social inequalities across education?

Open education can be an equalizer, ensuring equal opportunities and open access. It can allow people to learn anytime, anywhere, using any device.  

Technology can help build bridges through virtual mobility and remote collaboration between teachers and students.

Affordable new technologies can help address divides due to unequal access to resources and infrastructure e.g. e-books.


Q4. The Open Education Europa portal is the European gateway to innovative learning in Europe. What would be your message to all educational practitioners that join the portal to exchange practices and innovative thoughts?

Learn from all, reflect, connect, don’t reinvent the wheel!

Sharing is at the heart of education. Share openly your best practices, inspire and support one another.



Focus on Education Innovation

The interview is part of a series of activities on Learning & Teaching Innovation. Be sure you check out the other activities here.


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