Mobile Interactive Information System for Learning based on Sustainability, IFSR …

Proceedings of the IFSR Conversation 2010, Pernegg, Austria
Discussion Paper (Team 3): Mobile Interactive Information System for Learning based on Sustainability
Susana Isabel Herrera
The International Institute Galileo Galilei (IIGG) is the research unit of the Argentine Foundation for Talent and Ingenuity (FATI). This foundation is recognized as a non-formal higher-education institution. Therefore, in addition to research, FATI develops the following activities: higher education services (through Colegio Mayor Universitario), consulting professional services (through the Prospective Consultant), studies of regional culture (through the Cultural Center Sapientia), monthly colleagues meetings – using conversations as an interactive methodology (through the Permanent Seminar Café Xperts). FATI is a learning community; it studies the complex reality from a systemic approach and it produces new scientific knowledge based on new paradigms of the twenty-first century and on Santiago del Estero culture.
FATI is a learning social system characterized mainly by the following features:
• It is an evolving system: it adapts itself to its environment changes. FATI realizes that transparadigmatic jumps are needed to study the complexity of current phenomena.
• It is systemically organized: its activities are developed throughout eight different units (or subsystems) each of which has its own goals but they work in an interrelated and interdependent way.
• It is founded on a Systemic Epistemology. This epistemology has been developed by IIGG and was exposed by Maria Mercedes Clusella at IFSR events.
• FATI always acts from an explicit ethic-philosophical point of view. This corroborates Matjaz Mulej’s statements: ethics is an element of social human-being systems. FATI’s ethic-philosophical position is focused on intelligence and sustainability. Based on José Antonio Marina’s ethics of intelligence, FATI is continuously promoting young people’s creativity and innovation; this is the reason of its name Talent and Ingenuity. On the other hand, FATI argues that an ecological ethic is necessary to preserve our planet. Ethic of learning systems must consider harmonic relationships between humans, and between humans and the Earth. FATI studies real world phenomena without destroying life and trying to preserve future generation’s life quality.
• FATI recognizes local own culture as a mindscape. Local culture determines how people know the real world. FATI’s local culture is called santiagueñidad. And it is mainly studied by its artistic expressions: music, sculpture, writings, legends, etc.
• FATI uses virtual learning methodologies based on new information and communication technologies. It has implemented a virtual platform -called Virtual Collegium- using e-learning strategies.
Most people use technological equipment in their ordinary life. So learning social systems must necessarily consider virtual relationships, they should be supported by virtual social networks. In this context, an information system research (a Ph.D. thesis Project) is being developed in FATI. The topic is Mobile Interactive Information Systems to support Postgraduate Training – it refers to a software system called e-mentor.
Learning for a sustainable world requires:
• Permanence. Learning is a continuous process that takes place throughout life (Life-Long-Learning). Postgraduate training requires the widest period of education, from 30 to 80 years old; so FATI focuses on this educational level. People achieve some global and specific skills at undergraduate courses. However, at postgraduate courses, they reflect on ethics, aesthetics, epistemology, sustainability, etc.
• Autonomy. Usually people study at formal education institutions until their graduation: primary school, secondary school and university. But from graduation, when people start their careers, learning should be autonomous. The person decides what, what for and how to learn.
• Being Systemic. Involving ethical and philosophical stance on learning means that people learn not only from a scientific viewpoint but also from a life perspective. Learning process involves every aspect, condition, skill and personal development. On the other hand, learning should relate personal new knowledge with the existing community knowledge and with near environment and global planet needs.
• Being environmentally friendly. Learning should occurr consciously considering threats to humanity (e.g. extreme global ideologies, fundamentalism) and to Earth subsistence (e.g. environmental destruction).
• Interaction. People learn by interacting with other people – in real or virtual communities – or with virtual educators, by using interactive ubiquitous learning systems.
My interest in participating in Team 3-Pernegg Conversations mainly lies in the possibility of sharing FATI experience as an example of learning system for sustainability. And a secondary aim is to learn other systemic-cybernetics strategies used in learning communities who seek sustainability. This will be useful to strengthen the theoretical foundations that support the Mobile Interactive Information System e-mentor, which is being developed in my PhD program.