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Niels Kerssens (Utrecht University): "Governed by edtech? Valuing educational autonomy in a platform society"
This talk discusses the implications of platformization on education as a public good. It will focus on two interconnected concerns: (1) how the integration of public education into a global digital infrastructure contests the autonomy of schools; and (2) how the integration of digital platforms with educational practices in classrooms challenges the professional autonomy of teachers. Through this dual focus, I will explore how critical research within the emerging field of ‘Platform Studies in Education’ pertains to two levels: the political-economic level of building educational platform infrastructures and the social-technical level of how teaching and learning is (re)shaped by digital platforms. I will conclude the talk by briefly discussing recommendations for the future governance of edtech to serve the public interest.
Niels Kerssens is assistant professor at the department of Media and Cultural Studies at Utrecht University. His research investigates the implications of platformization on education as a public good. As principal researcher he leads the Special Interest Group (SIG) Platformisation of education, which is part of the focus area Governing the Digital Society (GDS). His current NWO Veni research project (sep 2021 - Aug 2024) is titled “Platformisation of primary education: public values at risk”.