Milan City of Learning
We are all learners. All the time, everywhere. We are always learning. We learn and we make connections between what we learn, everyone creating their own pathway to growth: personal and professional. The depth of opportunities for learning that are concentrated in cities like Milan and which enable the learner to bring about this connected learning is amazing: it is the ideal ecosystem for developing more and more new, dynamic, precious competencies. It is not just by chance that LRNG is dedicated to working with cities like Chicago and Pittsburgh to set up metropolitan connected learning systems.
Bearing these inspirations in mind, Cineca has decided to back the City of Milan in its mission of stimulating and exploiting the learning opportunities already in being and coming into being in the city, by proposing Bestr as the digital platform which, by the use of Open Badges, supports the typical non formal and informal learning mechanisms, towards – in the words of the city councillor Tajani:
"The twin objectives of giving recognition to the value of certain competencies that have no formal recognition and of offering the citizens the chance to develop new competencies";.
The experiment began at the end of 2015 with the civic language schools, which issued approximately 140 Badges to more than 1100 learners on the various levels of linguistic competencies in English, French, German, Spanish, Japanese, Turkish, Arabic, Russian, Portuguese and Italian for foreigners.
In the first months of 2016 the experiment was extended to include three digital manufacturing laboratories (OpenDot, YATTA! e WeMake), the incubator FabriQ and the Civica Scuola Interpreti e Traduttori (Civic School of Interpreters and Translators): each of these five has created a Badge to describe one of the competencies which helps growth. Learning Rhinoceros for 3D modelling, taking part in a route to business incubation, taking part in makers activities, successfully completing a course of digital manufacturing or one on tools of web communication have now become competencies represented by Open Badges on the Bestr platform, gathered under the project of "Milan City of Learning".
On the 24th of May 2016, on the OpenDot space, the second stage was presented and the trainers involved shared their personal reflections about this, the expected results and ideas for the future.
The councillor for Policies of Work, Economic Development, Universities and Research, Cristina Tajani, introduced the meeting, expressing hopes for expansion of this type of enhancement of competencies that come into being in non formal and informal contexts, for the benefit of both the training and productive systems.
YATTA! underlined the importance of issuing the Badge, especially working with young people in the underprivileged bracket (NEET among others), for whom it is important to be able to award some recognition to mark the achievement of an objective, which can then be invested in the labour market and remains to represent the richness earned with experience, no matter how long.
WeMake has decided to associate the Badge not with a specific experience, but with getting involved, so the learner who makes his personal competencies available in the group of the makers will get recognition for it in return, something lasting and spendable: a way for citizens to regain possession of their own pathways of life and work.
OpenDot has used the Badge to certify successful completion of the FabAcademy training course, which is complex and difficult, natively international and highly innovative, but for which the only official certificate at the moment is on paper.
FabriQhas hopes for the application of the Badges to the training courses involving young people who are just under or just over the age of majority, where it is important, including in the area of combating school truancy, to give proof of acquired competencies, independently of whether or not the training course turns into an actual startup.
Lastly, the Civica Scuola Interpreti e Traduttori "Altiero Spinelli" (Civic School of Interpreters and Translators) has made a positive evaluation of the opportunity provided by the Badges for rethinking training in terms of competencies and continuing to build on the identity of "schools of doing" directed towards the world of work, which is typical of the civic schools.
- Refer to experimental project of Milan, City of Learning on Bestr, with the related Badges
- View photos of the press conference