Opening access to online learning in higher education is critical to build a path towards Education 2030

“Communication, Implementation, Collaboration and Monitoring,” were the key messages at the end of a High-Level Policy Forum, entitled “Higher education for the sustainable future we want. The way ahead for online, open and flexible learning: opportunities and actions” held in Pretoria, South Africa on 17 October.

“Communication, Implementation, Collaboration and Monitoring,” were the key messages at the end of a High-Level Policy Forum, entitled “Higher education for the sustainable future we want. The way ahead for online, open and flexible learning: opportunities and actions” held in Pretoria, South Africa on 17 October.

Held back to back with the 26th ICDE World Conference, the forum was organized by the International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE) in partnership with UNESCO, the Commonwealth of Learning (COL) and the Open Education Consortium (OEC).

It brought together 130 leaders and decision-makers from around the world, including senior officials of education ministries and policy-makers in higher education, academia, representatives of teacher associations and student organizations, UNESCO Chairs in ICT/ODL, ICDE Chairs in OER, Ed-Tech industry, global and regional networks, researchers, and leading non-governmental organizations.

The forum developed preliminary regional action plans aimed at leveraging higher education to help achieve sustainable development worldwide. In doing so, it built on previous summits in Bali (November 2014) and Paris (June 2015) and on the Incheon and Qingdao Declarations.