July 2007

Taking e-Learning Development Agenda Beyond Africa

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The second eLearning Africa conference on ICT for Development, Education and Training closed on May 30, with the total number of 1403 participants, an increase of over eighty percent compared to the inaugural event in 2006. eLearning users, newcomers, providers, and experts from 88 countries spanning all continents gathered during the three conference days at the Safari Park Hotel in Nairobi, Kenya.

Approximately 73 percent of the participants came from 43 African countries, making it a truly Pan-African event. Kenya, the hosting country, had the largest participant group, followed by the Nigerian delegation and big groups from South Africa and Uganda. From Europe, the UK sent the largest contingent. Canada and the USA were also well represented.

The conference was attended by e-Learning experts from universities, schools, companies, the health sector, non-governmental organisations (NGOs) engaged in capacity development and education, government representatives, as well as from major development bodies. The programme featured the input of 308 speakers from 55 countries, including presentations from major development organisations, such as UNESCO, UNEVOC, the Global Development Learning Network (GDLN), and the World Bank, as well as national and governmental institutions, mainly from Africa but also from Europe, Asia, and  North America.

Projects and initiatives from all over Africa were presented, and the agenda featured leading example of how the latest developments in e-Learning are being put to work in the service of learners regardless of their location or level of technology. e-Learning at school and in medical and public health education featured significantly in this year's agenda, as well as free open content and the provision of open education resources for all types of training.

UNESCO-UNEVOC, in partnership with the Commonwealth of Learning, the UNESCO Regional Bureau for Education in Africa, and the German Federal Institute for Vocational Education and Training, organised the first African Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) Summit “Access to and Inclusion in TVET in Africa Through New ICT-Based Solutions”, which attracted more than 120 participants.

ICT on the Agenda

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