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Academic News|Mobile Learning Week 2018: preparing to meet the skill requirements of a connected world

From 26 to 30 March, UNESCO is organizing its annual flagship information and communications technology (link is external)in education event: Mobile Learning Week. It will bring together experts, practitioners and policy-makers from around the world to share ideas and best practices on ways to use ubiquitous mobile technology to support learning for all, particularly disadvantaged communities.

This year, they will examine the range of digital skill and competences that people will need to play an active part in societies transformed by emerging technologies including, robotics, artificial intelligence, and the Internet of Things.

Organized in partnership with the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), Mobile Learning Week 2018 will feature a symposium, workshops on innovative projects and policies, and strategy labs, as well as a policy forum on national educational initiatives with ministers of education, technology and communications to prepare for the digital economy (see programme).

The event will be opened by the Director-General of UNESCO, Audrey Azoulay, who will highlight the importance of gearing education and training systems everywhere to the ongoing revolution in technology. “In our increasingly connected world, digital skills are a pre-requisite for economic and social inclusion, we need innovative policies and investments to bridge digital divides, provide all learners with digital skills and vastly expand opportunities to acquire them throughout life.”

Houlin Zhao, Secretary-General of the ITU, who will open the event alongside Ms Azoulay, says, “As the lead UN agency for information and communication technologies (ICTs), ITU is proud to partner with UNESCO for Mobile Learning Week 2018 to explore how we can leverage the power of ICTs to ensure inclusive and quality education for all.”

Notable speakers will include:

Moussa Oumarou, Deputy Director-General for Operations and Partnerships, International Labour Organization (ILO),
Maren Kroeger, of the United Nations Refugee Agency, UNHCR,
Ariam Mogos, Education Innovation Specialist with UNICEF,
Yves Punie, Senior Scientist at the European Union research unit on Human Capital and Employment,
Mariana Costa, Chief Executive Officer of Laboratoria, a social enterprise that prepares young women from low income backgrounds for a career in tech,
Chris Coward of the Technology & Social Change Group (TASCHA) of the University of Washington Information School,
Beeban Kidron, film director, producer, children's rights campaigner and member of the UK House of Lords.

(This report is adapted from UNESCO,