Networked Learning Conference 2020

Keynote Speakers

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    Ben Williamson

    Dr Ben Williamson

    Dr Ben Williamson is a Chancellor’s Fellow at the Edinburgh Futures Institute and the Research Centre in Digital Education at the University of Edinburgh, with research interests in digital technologies and data in education policy and practice.

    Ben’s current research concentrates on Higher Education data infrastructures and software platforms for performance measurement of universities, and on the development of novel technologies and methods for gathering ‘intimate’ biological data related to education, including biometrics, neurotechnologies, and bioinformatics. He examines these developments from the perspective of science and technology studies, policy analysis, digital sociology, and critical data studies, in order to untangle the social, technical, economic and political work involved in their production and their subsequent implications for a range of education practices and settings.

    Ben’s book Big Data in Education: The digital future of learning, policy and practice was published by Sage in 2017, and Ben is a co-editor of the journal Learning, Media and Technology. He maintains a research blog at and on Twitter he is @BenPatrickWill.

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    Lesley Gourlay

    Lesley Gorlay

    Lesley Gourlay is a Professor of Education in the department of Culture Communication and Media at UCL Institute of Education, London, where she served as Head of Department, 2014-2018. Her scholarship focuses on the interplay between technologies and the knowledge practices of students and academics, with a particular emphasis on textual practices and the digital. Her recent theoretical work has focused on sociomaterial and posthuman perspectives on engagement in the university, exploring themes of space, inscription, nonhuman agency, and digital media. Lesley is also the Director of the Academic Writing Centre at UCL IOE, and chair of the IOE Refugee Education Working Group. She is a contributor to national and global debates surrounding digital literacy education, and serves on the editorial boards of several international higher education educational and technology journals.

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    Rikke Toft Nørgård

    Rikke Toft Nørgård

    Rikke Toft Nørgård is Associate Professor in Educational Design and Technology at the Centre for Teaching Development and Digital Media, Aarhus University (AU). She is also in a steering committee member of the Center for Higher Education Futures, AU and in the organising committee for the Oxford Ethnography & Education Conference. Her research focuses on the theoretical intersections and practical applications of philosophy of technology, design thinking, critical pedagogy and higher education futures. She is presently involved in the research and development projects Play&Learn DigiMedia (on teachers use of digital media in education), VASE (on value sensitive design in higher education), IGNITE (on design thinking and making as a way of teaching and learning in higher education and STAK (on students’ academic digital competencies in higher education). Rikke also serves on the Academic Council at Arts, AU as well as the editorial or advisory board of international higher education and technology publications.

    Much of her research output can be found here

    She can be found on Twitter as @RikkeToftN and on LinkedIn as Rikke Toft Nørgård



    Designing for computational creativity and technological imagination with teachers across and within the disciplines

    This presentation highlights the ongoing power struggles with and around technology currently pervading the conceptualization and practice of computational thinking and technological literacy in education. These struggles impact practitioners, developers and researchers on all educational levels. The presentation shines a light on this ongoing power struggle over who gets to define the field and some of its potential consequences for and impact on education, educators and educational research and development. It then goes on to provide a broader framework and practice that are connected to and coming from the disciplinary and pedagogical heart of educators and where they are invited to ‘dare to dream’. The aim is to foster a space for daring, productive and imaginative struggles with technology where educators, educational developers and researchers network, learn and dream together across the disciplines in ways that are respectful, empathic and inclusive towards differences in understanding, design and practice.