In the presentation below, Rheingold describes the coming world of collaboration as a participatory media and collective action. He also discusses how Wikipedia, an outgrowth of our natural human instinct, works as a group.
The spirit of collaboration, a key issue for the open content movement, reinforces new concepts such as “smart mobs” , “networks” and “collectives”.
Smart mobs which means self-structuring social organization through technology-mediated, intelligent emergent behavior. Howard Rheingold introduces this concept in his book Smart Mobs: The Next Social Revolution.
Networks refers to individuals, members of online communities, some of which are enhanced by face-to-face gatherings, but increasingly supported only through various forms of online interaction. “Increasingly older face-to-face networks are moving many of their activities online to increase access to members and to take advantage of the recording and archiving afforded by digital networks. Networks usually operate over extended periods of time and are not constrained to time lines arbitrarily set by educational institutions.” (Anderson, 2007)
Collectives “ are the newest and most unfamiliar of the aggregations of the Many. Collectives are a kind of cyber-organism, formed from people linked algorithmically using networked software. Through use of the Net, we create trails, and archived data, engage in discussion and transactions and make both tacit and conscious decisions that, when aggregated with those of many others, create a new learning resource and context – which we refer to as collectives” (Anderson, 2007)
More information: Anderson, T. (2007). Reducing the Loneliness of the Distance Learner Using Social Software.
Charles Leadbeater presents several cases about “amateur innovation” – people who have the tools to collaborate and innovate make their expertise known through great ideas from outside the traditional walls.
Charles Leadbeater’s theories on innovation have compelled some of the world’s largest organizations to rethink their strategies.
His book, We-Think explores how this emerging culture of mass creativity and participation could reshape companies and governments.
We Think was published by Profile in March 2008. It includes a sharing draft of the first eleven chapters online. This was downloaded thousands of times. The author received hundreds of comments from people that changed the way the book was written.
The first three chapters of the book can be downloaded from the We Think section of his website
He is currently researching for Atlas of Ideas, a program that is mapping changes in the global geography of science and innovation
Learning resources and facilities needed are insufficient to attend the needs of higher education which is expanding rapidly even in development countries. The estimated number of academic students around the world in 2025 is 160 million (See John Daniel, Mega Universities and Knowledge Media – Kogan Page 1996). Reusing online reources is one of the essential strategies for a sustainable approach to e-learning . For Koper (2001) many educational institutions are adopting new approaches to increase effectiveness due to several factors such as the need for:
– a more individualized and personalized approach to learning
– collaboration, discussion and product creation
– teaching complex skills
– lifelong learning
Koper, EJR (2001) Modeling Units of Study from a Pedagogical Perspective: The pedagoical metamodel behind EML, Open Universiteit Nederland http://eml.ou.nl/introduction/docs/ped-metamodel.pdf