Education for Technology Transition Restructures Energy Systems

Education for Technology Transition Restructures Energy Systems

Gilbert Ahamer (Austrian Academy of Sciences, Vienna, Austria)
Copyright: © 2018 |Pages: 15
DOI: 10.4018/IJTEM.2018070103

Abstract

Our present world calls for peaceful transitions, given the ruptures in political cultures and the massive global threat of climate change. A transition of the energy system will and must go hand in hand with a socio-political transition. Any design of learning procedures should hence take into account real-world projects, including projects on environment, climate change and energy. This chapter suggests that diverse patterns, lenses and metrics are taken into account when educating. Such an interparadigmatic approach means to focus on multiple perceptions from diverse stakeholders. Learners should be able to bridge different viewpoints by their capacity to integrate diverse values, perspectives, and views. As a concrete case study, the cooperative negotiation game “Surfing Global Change” is used to show how these educational values can be implemented. Further analyses of literature and data on didactics, climate change and economic transitions complement this chapter.
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1. What Present Technology And Education Look Like

When focusing on education and concrete project work, the globe (example in Figure 1) offers a series of challenges to many of us.

This paper identifies three groups of requirements for which suitable professional training should be provided: interculturality, interdisciplinarity and being situated in multiple (interparadigmatic) value systems.

What training can we offer to young people passing from school, college or university into employment? This paper outlines usage of a five-level negotiation game that trains responsible self-organisation by situated learning, targeting “entrepreneurship for an enterprising society” (Mwasalwiba, 2010: 21, Taatila, 2010: 50).

The role-play “Surfing Global Change” (see Ahamer, 2013 for a literature analysis) is a training procedure for policy makers, educators and academics working in multi-stakeholder settings such as environment, civil engineering, technology assessment, spatial planning, infrastructures, peace work and global administrative cooperation.

Figure 1.

Physical workplaces require interculturality, interdisciplinarity and a synthesis of manifold value systems in order to match demands in a globalized world

1.1. Multiple Value Systems: Being Interparadigmatic

Education for the global labour market means fostering the skill to perceive and take account of various “ethical measurement systems” (i.e. values: metrics for human assessment of perceived entities), both in countries affected by migration, multi-ethnic or multi-religious backgrounds. Participation (ÖGUT, 2007: 6) is a tool for incorporating stakeholders’ value systems during any planning process.

1.2. Combining Three Requirements for Education

Consistent and up-to-date education should promote skills to bridge

  • 1.

    Diverse patterns and cultures of understanding from which stakeholders stem

  • 2.

    Diverse lenses through which stakeholders perceive and assess issues

  • 3.

    Diverse metrics by which stakeholders judge the suitability of solutions.

Taking into account that (i) re-framing of learners along their path enhances learning and that (ii) switching of assumed roles encourages learning, a well-designed role play (Prensky, 2001) seems to promise good results. Moreover, it strengthens entrepreneurship (Hytti, 2010, p. 588).

2. Which Education In The Long Term?

Clearly, short-term professional training has to follow the short-term needs of the human resources market in many cases. Additionally, long-term requirements can be deduced from the overall civilisational evolution that promises to focus on communication skills needed for understanding diverse world concepts.

Ultimately, consciousness stems from reflection. Learners could reflect on

  • Themselves (their living culture), in Greek “know yourself” is γνωθι σαυτον

  • Their views of realities (their disciplines (Werlen, 2010: 187-192)

  • The value systems against which they check and assess perceived realities.

In this sense, interculturality, interdisciplinarity and multiple value systems are three consecutive substrates of reflection (Ahamer et al., 2011, p. 17, Harvey, 1996, p. 10).

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