‘If you believe education is too expensive, try ignorance’

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Sep 19, 2012
by Salzburg Global Seminar Staff
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‘If you believe education is too expensive, try ignorance’

The rapporteur’s report from the Salzburg Global Seminar session: ‘Optimizing Talent: Closing Educational and Social Mobility Gaps Worldwide II’, is now available for download.The report accompanies the audio lectures, podcast interviews, and session papers also available online: www.salzburgglobal.org/go/486Held in December 2011, the seminar was the second in a series of seminars to be jointly held with Educational  Testing Service (ETS), and considered where educational and social mobility gaps still exist, what effect they have, why they persist – or increase sometimes, even in societies where the economy is growing – and what can be done to eliminate them.Following on from the planning meeting held at the first seminar in the series in 2010, this seminar focused on basic education up to 18 years of age; the upcoming seminar Optimizing Talent: Closing Educational and Social Mobility Gaps Worldwide III – Higher Education and Life-long Learning, to be held October 2-7, 2012 will focus on post-secondary education.The December 2011 session saw 45 participants from 20 countries across five continents come together at Schloss Leopoldskron for five days of discussions on how best to tackle four areas of global significance to education: basic education, finance, policy and transition.The forthcoming session Optimizing Talent: Closing Educational and Social Mobility Gaps Worldwide III – Higher Education and Life-long Learning is still open for registration with a small number of places still available. Further information on the session and how to register is available online: www.salzburgglobal.org/go/495 The session is being held in partnership with ETS, the DeVry Foundation and the Lumina Foundation, and will be similar in format to the 2011 meeting, bringing together up to 60 leading education researchers, policy makers, practitioners and advocates from around the world to analyze successful and promising case studies that show an effective narrowing of educational and social mobility gaps.Papers are currently being commissioned around the broad issues of policy and finance and how they relate to questions of access, retention, attainment, and completion, issues of quality as well as differentiations and value added at the tertiary education level. These papers will be made available to participants in advance of the session, and will be published online after the close of the seminar.The topics of life-long learning and successful transitions from secondary to tertiary education and then into the workforce will also be addressed. The ultimate goal is to identify, develop, and refine existing and new policy strategies that enable greater social and educational mobility thereby optimizing young peoples’ talent across all strata of society in a way that has the broadest benefit and deepest impact on individuals and the societies of which they are a part.The ‘Optimizing Talent: Closing Educational and Social Mobility Gaps Worldwide’ series forms part of the Salzburg Global Seminar’s wider portfolio of work on education, reaching back to the first seminar held on ‘American Education’ in 1956, and now including the long-running International Study Program on global citizenship, the Salzburg Academy on Media and Global Change, as well as the Seminar’s support of the Austrian branch of the 'Teach for All' initiative, 'Teach for Austria'.