EBD2021 Parallel Sessions & Workshops Sunday

Sunday May 9th Parallel Sessions and Workshops

Four Parallel Sessions 12:45-13:45 CET

Inspiration from the US
Bildung as Counter Culture
Unlocking the Practice of Bildung with Beauty, Imagination and Calling

Parallel Try-it-Yourself Workshops 13:55-15:10 CET

Civic Desire – rebuilding a world worth living in
Bildung in 2100
Quote Café
Starting a Bildung Initiative
Danish Muslim Manifesto

Parallel sessions 12:45-13:45

Bildung inspiration from the US

We have found three very different American programs that provide bildung in each their own unique way:

  • Gretchen Colon elaborates on the self-organized Chatauqua festivals across North America that she introduced on Saturday
  • Valentina Texera Parissi is the president and CEO of Great Books in Chicago; Great Books has promoted study circles around literature since 1948.
  • Reed Shafer-Ray introduces Lead 4 America, which engages young academics in a two-year program to turn troubled communities around

Click on each title to read more.

Gretchen Colon worked for more than 12 years at Lakeside Chautauqua in Ohio as the Senior V.P. of Advancement and Communications, spreading the ideals of Chautauqua.

Gretchen Colon introduced the Chautauqua Movement in her keynote on Saturday, now you can learn more about the self-organization of these bildung events.

A multilingual professional and collaborative leader, Valentina has committed her career to promote literacy, develop professional education for teachers, and foster lifelong learning. As President and CEO of the Great Books Foundation, Valentina leads the Foundation’s mission to expand and strengthen inquiry-based learning, advocacy, and leadership. Building upon the Foundation’s 70-year history of helping people of all ages think critically, listen closely, and consider differing ideas with civility, Valentina believes that an inquiry-based approach is essential not only for learning but also for leadership.

The Great Books Foundation is an independent nonprofit educational organization that has fostered respectful dialogue and civic engagement for over 70 years. The mission of the Great Books Foundation is to advance the critical, reflective thinking and social and civic engagement of people of all ages through Shared Inquiry™ discussion of works and ideas of enduring value.

Through Shared Inquiry™ discussions, people of all walks of life are empowered to become more knowledgeable, reflective, and engaged citizens equipped to participate constructively in all areas of their life.

Reed Shafer-Ray is Co-Founder and COO of Lead For America, an organization that works to build strong communities by cultivating locally rooted, dynamic, and representative civic leadership. Shafer-Ray joined the founding team after writing an article in their student newspaper describing the structural brain drain of the nation’s most promising young leaders leaving their communities behind to work in the biggest companies in the biggest cities in the country. To date, Lead For America has over 100 Fellows serving in 24 states, and seven regional affiliates.

At Lead For America, Shafer-Ray designed and executed a recruitment strategy that has succeeded in attracting over 5,000 young people to apply for Lead For America’s flagship two-year fellowship program, built financial, operational, HR, and compliance infrastructure that has supported a $7m/year federally funded nonprofit, and manages a staff of 19 world class team members and growing. Shafer-Ray aspires to build a world where every individual is part of an equitable, healthy, and caring community, where all are enmeshed in a deep network of loving relationships.

Shafer-Ray is a product of public school in Norman, Oklahoma and Harvard University.

Across the West, a combination of globalization, increasing demands for longer education, robotization and digitization, have left many small town communities without jobs, youth and hope.

Lead For America has faced these challenges and is turning the development around across the United States: They are training young, resourceful academics to return to their hometown and reinvigorate the communities through a two-year program. Among the 400+ programs initiated so far are improved broadband internet, workforce development, climate preparedness, community planning, COVID-19 relief for the Navajo community, building a bigger community of cyclists, and turning soldiers into scholars.

Lead For America writes in their mission statement: Lead For America exists to ensure that our nation’s most dynamic and diverse talent is working on their communities’ toughest challenges. At Lead For America we work to create a world where every person is treated with dignity, care, and kinship, is part of a vibrant, supporting, and relationship-oriented community, and has full access to achieving economic, social, and spiritual fulfillment.

Bildung as Counter Culture

How can we stand up to the market and to consumerism and reclaim humanity? Bildung empowers us as citizens, and empowering us as citizens provides bildung. Three short presentations open this session:

  • Garry Nicholson turned an English course in a troubled neighborhood upside down and changed people’s lives
  • Ginie Servant has studied how Paolo Freire’s activism empowers the poorest
  • Uwe Gartenschläger handed over the education planning to the students

Click on each title to read more.

Garry Nicholson is an adult learning educator and in a thirty-year career has taught people from the age of 4 to 84. He is currently undertaking a postgraduate research degree with Sunderland University that asks ‘Does Bildung have a place in English adult education?’ Focus areas of his research include pedagogical praxis in the Danish folk high schools and educators’ professional phronesis. He believes that neo-liberalism has led to an overemphasis on developing economic capital and that education should be person-centred and holistic in its approach.

This presentation recounts the inspiration for a postgraduate research project which considers the place of the European lifelong learning concept of Bildung (self-formation) in the English adult education system. Set on a social housing estate located in a large city in North East England, it is the tale of how a group of working-class women and one persistently maverick tutor abandoned the grim motorway of functional English classes and instead travelled the happier backroads of Bildung. Along the journey a series of autobiographical writing activities allowed the women to write, reflect and talk freely about the challenges they had experienced in life and question their own cultural norms of educational antipathy, proving to be the catalyst for their increased self-authorship.

Questions are raised about the lack of real agency in adult education. Many of the person-centred principles of andragogy are becoming less prevalent in an adult learning landscape that increasingly focuses solely on the need to increase the human economic capital of the working classes and make them ‘functional’. Many of us would like to see an alternative educational paradigm realised that lends itself better to developing agency and broadening horizons. The Scandinavian countries are considered to be some of the most equal societies in the world and Bildung is at the heart of their education systems. Perhaps it is time that it enters that of the United Kingdom as an underpinning concept that can begin to challenge class inequalities.

Ginie Servant-Miklos is a Senior Lecturer in the Humanities Department of Erasmus University College, and holds a visiting professorship in experimental pedagogics at Tyumen University, Russia. She has recently completed a post-doctoral fellowship at Aalborg University’s Centre for Problem-based Learning in Engineering Education and Sustainability under the auspices of UNESCO. Her research focuses on a critical look at the intersection of educational practices, identity issues, socio-economic inequality and sustainability through structured education action research. Praxis is key to Ginie’s education research projects, and she has been involved developing teacher and student training programmes to incorporate her research findings into practice for nearly a decade.

In this presentation, Ginie will introduce the concept of experimental pedagogics as a revolutionary form of praxis in nurturing education innovators that are up to the massive challenges we face. Experimental pedagogics challenges the contemporary distinction between “education sciences”, a field traditionally dominated by quantitative research in cognitive psychology, and “pedagogics”, and applied field. Experimental pedagogics offers a layered transdisciplinary and meta-level approach to learning: on the one hand, project work is where layered multidisciplinary input meets transdisciplinary stakeholder input, and on the other hand, students learn about experimental pedagogics by doing experimental pedagogics and systematically reflecting on their practice. Thus, experimental pedagogics’ understanding of bildung is one of praxis.
In this presentation, Ginie will introduce the concept of experimental pedagogics as a revolutionary form of praxis in nurturing education innovators that are up to the massive challenges we face. Experimental pedagogics challenges the contemporary distinction between “education sciences”, a field traditionally dominated by quantitative research in cognitive psychology, and “pedagogics”, an applied field. Experimental pedagogics offers a layered transdisciplinary and meta-level approach to learning: on the one hand, project work is where layered multidisciplinary input meets transdisciplinary stakeholder input, and on the other hand, students learn about experimental pedagogics by doing experimental pedagogics and systematically reflecting on their practice. Thus, experimental pedagogics’ understanding of bildung is one of praxis.

Uwe Gartenschlaeger, M.A, studied History, Political Science and Philosophy at the Universities of Berlin and Cologne. After working for four year with a church based adult education provider specialized on topics of reconciliation and history, he joined DVV International, the Institute for International Cooperation of the German Adult Education Association, in 1995. He held the positions of Country Director in Russia and Regional Director in Central Asia and Southeast-Asia. Since 2019, he is President of the European Association for the Education of Adults (EAEA) and DVV International’s Deputy Director.

From 2015 – 2018, the Regional office of DVV International in Vientiane implemented together with several international and local partners a training cycle for Adult Educators in Laos. A group of 35 participants was involved in six face-to-face trainings weeks and several additional activities. The project turned out to become a complex learning experience, which went far beyond teaching knowledge and skills into a territory of personal empowerment, moral learning and enlarging the circles of belonging. It is interesting and challenging to analyze this experience, which confronts Bildung-paradigms with another culture.

Bildung in Higher Education

How can bildung be an integral part of young adult and adult education? How can we teach math and science so that it becomes fun and meaningful to everybody and adds bildung to people’s lives?

Click on each title to read more.

Judith Bodenstein is a Project Manager for the Berlin Science Week. The Berlin Science Week is a 10-day international festival between 1 — 10 November bringing together the world’s most innovative scientific organisations to celebrate science, to connect and to engage the local and international science community with the public.

Matthes Lindner is the Category Lead for Future Learning. Falling Walls Future Learning showcases and connects initiatives and technologies that break the wall towards a better future for learners and educators. The mission of Falling Walls Future Learning is to spread best practice examples of teaching and learning, foster collaboration and inspire.

The questions we hope to bring to the table in this discussion are: What role do strong networks play in the success of redefining learning models? And how may we build spaces that facilitate synergies for a transformation towards better learning in Higher Education?

The Falling Walls Foundation is the unique global hub connecting science, business and society. As a vessel for the world-changing spirit of 1989 in and beyond Berlin, we are on a relentless pursuit to find out: Which are the next walls to fall?

Ward and Marius are students at the University of Groningen in the master track Ethics of Education. Both of them are currently doing an internship at the project Democratization of Critical Thinking. Ward researches the economic domain of vocational citizenship education. He criticizes the neo-liberal values that shape this domain and calls for a more comprehensive and critical interpretation of citizenship education.

Marius is conducting interviews on the experiences of personal development in vocational education.

The Farmer and the Farming: Bildung in Citizenship and Vocational Education

At what point does the farmer’s child choose to become a farmer? Is this a choice to begin with? Our utopian presentation of the farmer provides an illustration of how we perceive the professional: seamlessly navigating between professional standards, personal values and societal expectations. By using this analogy we hope to spark a discussion on rethinking the individual, their autonomy and Bildung. We question the autonomy of the farmer’s child as they shape their conception of ‘the good life.’

Kees Spijker (MA General Linguistics), since 2007 director of The New School for Information Services in Amsterdam (privately funded and accredited University of Applied Sciences founded 1987, first to receive Distinctive Feature ‘Bildung’ from the Dutch Ministry of Education). From 1987-2007 Independent consultant and interim manager in profit and non-profit organizations, amongst others higher education, director and initiator of institutions for literary writing, initiator of labour market orientation courses for academic students. Married, (grand)father, musician.

Two years ago The New School in Amsterdam (university of applied sciences) received the Distinctive Feature ‘Bildung’ on top of her six yearly positive re-accreditation by the Dutch Ministry of Education. We were the first institution of higher education to get that feature. It was a result of more than 30 years of focusing on personal growth next to content growth.

Our motto ‘Je bent nooit af’ (Growth never stops) reflects our way of thinking and doing.

How did we get there? And how did we go on from there? Noblesse oblige, so how to set a further example and try a guiding role. Amongst others we – together with two other companies – developed an instrument to help organizations strengthen bildung.

Unlocking the Practice of Bildung with Beauty, Imagination and Calling

Responding to the theme of the year: “Bildung, unlocking the spirit; how do we do it?”, Jonathan Rowson, Pippa Evans and Mark Vernon offer insights on bildung from their practices, which range across education, improvisation, and mental health. The speakers are with the UK group, Perspectiva, and are also co-organisers of The Realisation Festival, which will take place in July at St Giles House, Dorset. “Realisation” is one way of translating bildung into English and the themes of beauty, imagination and calling have arisen from reflecting on the work of the Third Earl of Shaftesbury, who lived at St Giles House, and was seminal in founding the idea of bildung. The roundtable discussion, with questions, will last 1 hour.

Jonathan is co-founder and Director of Perspectiva. He was previously Director of the Social Brain Centre at the RSA where he authored a range of influential research reports on behaviour change, climate change and spirituality, and curated and chaired a range of related events. Jonathan is an applied philosopher with degrees from Oxford, Harvard and Bristol Universities. In a former life he was a chess Grandmaster and British Champion (2004–6) and views the game as a continuing source of insight and inspiration. His book, The Moves that Matter – A Grandmaster on the Game of Life was published by Bloomsbury in 2019.

Pippa is a performer specialising in improvisation and musical theatre, who works with our Associates to bring their work to life in both private and public workshops or experiences. Her work has seen her tour globally, both as a stand-up and as a founder member of the Olivier award-winning stage show, Showstoppers! The Improvisational Musical. In 2013, Pippa co-founded the Sunday Assembly, a network of secular and inclusive congregations, which now operates in over 70 cities globally. This work, combined with her fascination around the connective experience of improvisation, through her ongoing project Improv Your Life, led Pippa to an interest in the exploration of secular spirituality and our ability to communicate deeply with each other. Pippa’s book, Improv Your Life: An Improviser’s Guide to Embracing Whatever Life Throws At You will be published in February 2021.

Mark is a writer, psychotherapist and associate of Perspectiva. He contributes to and presents programmes on the radio, as well as writing for the national and religious press, and online publications. He also podcasts, in particular The Sheldrake-Vernon Dialogues with Rupert Sheldrake, gives talks and leads workshops. He has a PhD in ancient Greek philosophy, and other degrees in physics and in theology, having studied at Durham, Oxford and Warwick universities. He is the author of several books, including his latest, out this year: A Secret History of Christianity: Jesus, the Last Inkling and the Evolution of Consciousness. He used to be an Anglican priest and lives in London, UK. Mark is working on the notion of spiritual intelligence with Perspectiva, which is not about problem-solving but the roots of awareness, as well as events. For more information see www.markvernon.com.

Bio Break


Parallel Workshops 13:55-15:10

Civic Desire – rebuilding a world worth living in

Meet Nadja Pass and experience her conversation salon Genopbyggerne / Rebuilders, which addresses how to return to a new and better normal after the pandemic. The salon format and Pass’ beautiful conversation cards are nominated for Danish Design Awards 2021 in the category ”Game Changer.”

We are living in a time of major changes. It might seem frightening. Yet it is a historic opportunity.

Our brains and hearts are wide open. Ready for change. Nothing is as it used to be and throughout the pandemic we collectively demonstrated how adaptable we are when urgently needed.

But we risk missing out on this great opportunity. Instead of learning, rethinking and refining, we may rush back to the habits we used to know. How do/can we stop our conversations from being gloomy and scary, and  instead fill them with the glow and sparks that bring forth inspiration and novelty?

This is where Genopbyggerne comes in. A book combined with a set of matching conversation cards designed to help each and everyone of us explore where, when and how we can make a difference and co-creatively shape the future.

Now is our chance to rethink and remake everything. To design the future we desire. New habits, work-lives and ways of being together. A more sustainable world. Lives that are really worth living.

Nadja Pass is a social entrepreneur. Her aim is to evoke civic desire through social innovations such as Conversation Salons, The Academy of Now and The Rebuilders. In addition to her many not-for-profit initiatives Nadja also works as an independent consultant helping institutions such as the Danish Parliament rediscover the power of conversations and The National Gallery to start new conversations about art.

Bildung in 2100

Join Lena Tünkers for a 70-minutes journey into several futures to collectively imagine how bildung might unfold in the year 2100. In this space of futures, you will dive into desirable futures, play with alternative scenarios and engage with futuristic elements. You might take a box of glooming inspirations or nothing with you to the present. We don’t dare to predict.

We call spaces of futures SiLA – SiLA are spaces that enable us to use futures as a tool and train human’s most unique quality – the ability to imagine. Based on the approach of Futures Literacy, Speculative Design and Improvisation, these spaces of futures allow us to flourish in uncertainty.

Lena Tünkers is a business & process designer and uses the future as a tool to spark radical new ideas. Over the past years, she has designed and facilitated a variety of workshops and innovation processes on the topics of education, collaboration, mobility, sustainability and culture. She is a board member of Founders of Tomorrow and hosts the House of Beautiful Business in Copenhagen. She draws her motivation and curiosity from the unknown and inspires people to imagine, rethink and act.

Read more about Lena here: https://www.lenatuenkers.com/

Quote Café

You know book clubs, right? Inspiring, but sometimes a lot of pages to turn before you get to debate with your fellow club members.

In the Quote Café, we take a shortcut to the action and base our discussion on just two quotes from literature. In this case, the theme is “Understanding Nature,” which means it is just as much about understanding ourselves…

Christian Poll holds a M.Sc. in Engineering and is a sustainability expert. He has worked in all sectors: the private, the public, education, and civil society, and eventually he entered politics. Christian took part in developing a new Danish political green party in 2014, The Alternative, and was elected for the Danish Parliament in 2015 as the green spokesperson for the party. Thus, Christian is both knowledgeable about technical, institutional, political and civil society aspects of sustainability, and he has created the Quote Café.

Starting a Bildung Initiative

Get the full story: What does it take to start a bildung initiative from scratch? Presentation and Q&A with Michiel Tolman who was one of the main founders of De Bildung Academie in Amsterdam, one of the most remarkable bildung initiatives in Europe in this century.

What are the biggest chances and obstacles when starting a bildung initiative? Which potential and leverage can be used? What are perceived setbacks and what are the real ones? This is your chance to ask all the questions you have regarding De Bildung Academie and how to start a bildung initiative.

Michiel will share how, step by step, one can generate increasing impact in a complex domain as an educational system and society in general. The workshop will include his personal experience during this creation process over the last six years. Both the bright moments and the moments of suffering. Plus what our evolving ‘Bild’ is which we invite from the future to present itself in the now.

Michiel Tolman has dedicated the past 6 years of his life to initiating and expanding the Bildung Academy in Amsterdam. He serves as a director, consultant, educational developer, teacher and coach, and the job includes developing Bildung programs under difficult circumstances, integrating different stakeholders in that process and reaching collectively defined goals in an effective and efficient way. His dream? Any willing individual, community and organization will have access to Bildung in the future. How? By scaling up Bildung programs and the accessibility of them and by creating a Europe broad network of Bildung stakeholders and alumni. The Bildung Academy is based in Amsterdam as is Michiel where he lives with his girlfriend.

Danish Muslim Manifesto

In this workshop, you get to be among the first to try out this new study material, which holds huge potential for a new approach to both Islam in particular and religion in general. Hosting the workshop is Danish Imam Naveed Baig, who is one of the three creators of the Danish Muslim Manifesto and the website https://www.danskmuslimskmanifest.dk/

The Danish Muslim Manifesto was just launched on the first day of the Ramadan and this is the first time that part of the Danish Muslim Manifesto has been translated into English and meets an international audience.

The Danish Muslim manifesto https://www.danskmuslimskmanifest.dk/ highlights the challenges and taboos that many Muslims experience living in Denmark and the goal is to start a new and productive conversation about Islam in Denmark among Muslims and non-Muslims alike.

The manifesto has 43 short chapters with titles such as “Islam and Democracy,” “Islam and Identity,” “Islam and Freedom of Speech,” and “Literature, Art and Aesthetics.” Each of the chapters is also an individual sub-page on the website, and there is a structure that runs through all the chapters: the sub-page opens with a short introduction of the topic, then comes a case or short story, which ends not in answers but in more questions, and finally, there are three to four quotes from the Quran. The website also has a series of podcasts relating to the chapters.

Islamologist Kasper Mathiesen and Imam and PhD fellow, Naveed Baig have created the Danish Muslim Manifesto, the 43 short stories and the questions. Sofie Clausager Dar, MA in Islamic Art, is the editor-in-chief of the podcast series “Sharia Manifesto”, while Kasper is the assistant editor. Kasper and Naveed are the hosts of the podcast, while Sofie is the narrator. Isam Bachiri is the narrator of the short stories. They are all Muslims.

Navid Baig is a hospital imam and project manager at Rigshospitalet / Herlev Hospital in Copenhagen and vice chairman of the Islamic-Christian Study Center, also in Copenhagen. Naveed has studied Islamic theology in Pakistan and is a Ph.D. fellow at the University of Oslo, he has also studied pastoral care at the Faculty of Theology at the University of Copenhagen.

Bildung in the Technasium / Tech-Ed ages 11-18

We are students at Eindhoven University of Technology in the Netherlands, currently busy with our “Master in Education” in order to become teachers at a Technasium. We are deeply curious how Bildung can help us become better teachers.

In a Technasium, highschool students work for 4-6 hours per week on a team conducting science and technical projects for clients outside of the school. In their first year they start with pre-defined projects, which develop towards a “Master Test” in their final year, where students must find their own client. The student groups are fully responsible for their own work.

The Technasium stimulates students to develop important “Bildung-skills” like cooperation, entrepreneurship, creativity, communication, self-management and project-based work.  (https://www.technasium.nl/what-is-technasium/)

During this hour you will get a short introduction of the Technasium and how we use “Bildung principles” in this type of education. Then we’d like to exchange ideas with you in groups of 5-10 people about Bildung in education. We are looking for best practices and experiences on how to bring Bildung into practice.

Join us to share ideas on how we can develop Bildung in-and outside our classrooms!

To participate, please do the following:

  1. join the network for free here: https://europeanbildung.net/membership-account/membership-levels/ (unless you are already a member)

  2. stay logged in and buy your early bird 29 € ticket (normal price: 49 €) here: https://europeanbildung.net/events/european-bildung-day-2021-tickets/