Take a deep breath.
We are experiencing significant challenges in how we study, work and live every day. These challenges are posed by numerous global uncertainties such as political disorders, climate crisis and hazardous pandemics. We are constantly being reminded by nature and human greed how fragile humanity truly is.
Now more than ever, we need to renew our collective responsibility towards pressing issues. Our individual actions directly or indirectly affect the larger scheme of things, a scheme which is often not visible to the naked eye.
These factors, among others, demand knowledge institutions, such as universities, to effectively search for new ways to facilitate qualitative learning and research, fulfil social tasks and help shape future-proof life.
We, five researchers from all over the world, met at the Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences (AUAS) in February 2022 with the aim of envisioning a preferable and realistic future for all of us.
Based on months-long research and collaboration with the Amsterdam community, we have drafted the first version of the Alter-Learning Manifesto - a set of principles and beliefs that guide individuals through rethinking today’s societal roles and actions while shaping a meaningful tomorrow.
We encourage you now, whoever you are, to critically reflect on these words. We hope this manifesto will ignite individual responsibility in collectives, inspire you to join hands and enter a transformational journey like none before.
You, the future lateral thinker, question a lot.
You question a lot. You reassess and rethink your challenges. You examine your challenges from different perspectives, questioning the fundamental reasons for their existence. You reflect this way of thinking in your actions.
You, the future learner, evolve as you learn.
You evolve as you learn. You consider everyone a learner. You regard learning as a continuous process throughout a lifespan. You relate learning to reality, and you learn socially. You take your opportunities to experiment, fail, learn, and iterate.
You, the future explorer, co-create knowledge.
You leverage open knowledge institutions and their results as building blocks for further development of society. You co-create knowledge with different societal actors within and beyond knowledge institutions in an open manner.
You, the future knowledge conveyor, build empathetic learning communities.
You cultivate learning environments which foster organic learning and exploration. You promote and prioritize human development topics focused on critical thinking, creative expression, self-discovery, compassion and integrity. You build empathetic learning communities with mutual trust and common challenges as pillars.
You, the future techno-realist, acknowledge that technology shapes humans and non-humans alike.
You acknowledge that technology shapes, manipulates, and changes humans and non-humans alike. You are also aware that progressive technologies further shape learning’s capabilities. You build learning spaces blending learners, challenges, technologies, culture and context to create unique and immersive learning experiences.
You, the future citizen, nurture collective consciousness.
You know that society is about reconciliation, unity, sense of belonging and regeneration. You cultivate a culture which celebrates individual liberation but also nurtures collective consciousness. You are aware that we depend on collaboration on a larger scale to shape a desirable tomorrow.
You, the future resilient human, embrace change as a means for growth.
You embrace change as a means for growth. You foster communities, networks and environments built upon how humans and non-humans behave in different situations, and respond and adapt to change. You work collectively to create the next generations of resilient learners.
You, the future Earth inhabitant, view the world around you as a living organism.
You view the world around you as a living organism and your playground. You build or join networks of societal actors which produce purpose-driven knowledge on critical challenges while also working and living in harmony. You search for ways to create interconnected networks with regenerative impact for a sustainable planet.
You, the future changemaker, think of this line reserved for you. You decide.
From now on, we rely on you and our collective human ingenuity to do it differently.
The Alter-Learning Manifesto is a work in progress. We have just started shaping the future. Together.
HELP US GET TO VERSION 2.0
As mentioned above, the Alter-Learning Manifesto is a work in progress. The aim for the futures principles is to constantly evolve as change happens. Using the comment section below, tell the community which principles will stick to you for a long time, which principles you missed and which principles can be tweaked according to your experience and beliefs.
Our team will be frequently igniting and facilitating discussions on this topic.
COMING SOON ➔ Alter-Learning Manifesto 2.0