Exploring the Educational Potential of Open Data:
From ongoing practices to future scenarios
With the digitalization of services and research data collection in the public space; as well as with the paradigm of the Internet of Things where more and more data from daily activities are collected in several ways, opening up this richness has become a social endeavour. In this context, the assumption that open data can encompass different forms of learning, or that they could be adopted in educational scenarios appears as a natural consequence (Raffaghelli, 2017; Raffaghelli, 2018). However, there might be other critical consequences that should be acknowleged. There are rich existing educational practices, and approaches for educational applications of open data are being explored (Atenas, Havemann, & Priego, 2015), aiming at data activism, civic monitoring and critical competences as digital citizens.
In fact, some have discussed the relevance of this approach under the lens of critical pedagogy, emphasizing the importance of open data for social cohesion (Manca, Atenas, Ciociola, & Nascimbeni, 2017). However, an important challenge for the societies to mine the treasure of open data, in a context of Open Education, regards the analytical basis and frameworks for practice that support mainstreaming. This has been a concern for the Network “Open Education Italy” that launched the project “ODA - Open Data per l’Apprendimento”. This learning activitiy is promoted by the above mentioned project and aims at exploring the educational potential of Open Data in diversified contexts of learning: formal (school and higher education) non-formal (work) and informal (political activism and civic engagement).
The learning activities's target are not only researchers but also practitioners interested on understanding the concept of open data connected to lifelong learning, as well as designing educational interventions adopting Open Data.
The activity is organized in two simple phases:
1- A conceptual introduction, which will put the basis to understand and discover the principles, the policy context and the existing practices relating Open Data, together with cases addressing practices
2- A “hands on” moment in which the concepts above will be applied to the participants’ pedagogical practices, and their sense discussed on the light of both practical and deontological implications.