The learning society
“We’re all born as lifelong learners. Toddlers don’t take anything for granted, they are willing to learn, unlearn and relearn. But when they get into school, we take away a lot of that capacity. We try to make them compliant. The issue of lifelong learning is not so much to accumulate new knowledge, it’s our willingness to unlearn and relearn when the context changes. And that’s the difficult part. We all get used to ways of working and thinking and habits. Suddenly, technology changes that and people need to adapt, for example to the current pandemic. The foundation of a learning society is the curiosity, the interest, the willingness, the capacity to learn on your own early on.
Another pillar of the learning society is that we need to become better at recognizing learning. We have made our systems very lumpy. You learn and learn and learn to get a degree, and you think that will last for many years. We are not very good in recognizing small incidences of learning. We recognize people by their past, by their degrees, not for what they can currently do. There are many learning opportunities in adult life, but we are not good enough to build a sort of intrinsic foundation for it.