Keynote Speakers

Gavin Baxter

Dr Gavin Baxter

University of the West of Scotland

Talk: Applying Social Software in Education: Lessons Learnt from Using Blogs as an Organisational Learning Approach

Abstract: Within education today, certain educators have become attracted to using social software tools in the classroom due to their potential to enhance the student learning experience. However, for many educators the use of social software in the classroom is viewed as unfamiliar territory. These educators, sometimes referred to as 'digital immigrants' often find it difficult to engage and apply the use of social software in the classroom often requiring guidance on how to do so.
In contrast, the use of social software is also gaining acceptance and use in certain organisations to facilitate learning among staff. In addition, organisations are adopting the use of blogs and wikis for the purposes of knowledge sharing in project teams which if properly implemented have the potential to facilitate the process of organisational learning. Examining the theory of organisational learning in addition to its introduction and application in organisations has the potential to provide educators with an understanding of how social software can be implemented and sustained in the class room.
Based on a recent empirical study undertaken by the speaker of one organisation's learning journey in introducing blogs in their ICT Division this key note talk will draw parallels with the lessons learnt from this study and how they can be applied in an educational context. The findings of this study will be interpreted in the presentation of a blog implementation model which can be adapted by educators to implement social software in the classroom thereby sustaining the concept of Web 2.0.

Bio: Dr Gavin Baxter is a staff member in the School of Computing and the ICT in Education Research Group at the University of the West of Scotland. His research focuses on the implementation of Web 2.0 technologies in organisations for the purposes of organisational learning. His other research areas include: the applicability of blogs as communication and knowledge sharing tools in organisational project-based environments. He has also published works about organisational blogging in the journals: The Learning Organization and IJCEnt. He also researches about the application of Web 2.0 technologies in educational contexts and is presently involved on the 'Web 2.0 European Resource Centre' project.


Mr Isidro Laso

Mr Isidro Laso

D.G. Information Society and Media. European Commission

Bio: Isidro Laso-Ballesteros is a Scientific Officer at the Directorate General Information Society and Media of the European Commission where he is in charge of the long term research activities and strategy activities, and is now dealing with the FutureInternet initiative. He has recently being appointed as coordinator of one of the actions of the "Digital Agenda for Europe" initiative. In addition, he teaches as lecturer in several universities and currently keeps permanent teaching slots in several postgraduate courses of the Virtual School of the Universidad Politecnica de Madrid-CEPADE and University of Burgos. He holds a degree on civil engineering and postgraduate studies on computational engineering and systems/networking engineering. Isidro has authored various books on the topic of Internet: "Internet y Comercio Electronico", "Internet, Comercio Colaborativo y mComercio". He has also published chapters in Japanese, English and Spanish in reviewed books edited by IOS press and Kluwer Academic publ. He has also authored three publications on Collaborative technologies, innovation, collaborative work environments and innovation published by the Official Publication Office of the European Communities (OPOCE). He is member of scientific boards of several IEEE and international conferences on ICT. He is regularly invited as keynote speaker on research institutions and conferences to talk about long term ICT research.