Keynote Abstract 01

FRIDAY, 21 OCTOBER 2016                            CONFERENCE HALL, 09:30 TO 10:10 

Peter Charles Taylor

Professor, Murdoch University, Perth, Western Australia

1Peter Charles Taylor is Professor of Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts & Mathematics Education (STEAM) and Director of the Transformative Education Research Group (TERG) at Murdoch University, Perth, Australia. His current research explores school-based, interdisciplinary curriculum development, bringing together the Arts and Sciences to develop students’ higher-order abilities, especially their creativity, cultural awareness and ethical astuteness.  As a mentor Peter encourages postgraduate students to adopt a transformative learning perspective on their professional development. Adopting multi-paradigmatic research approaches, his students explore their cultural histories and identities, excavate their values and beliefs, conceptualise culturally-inclusive models of education, and develop agency to transform their institutions and communities. Peter has supervised over 40 doctoral and masters research theses, and over 100 masters dissertations. For the past 30 years, Peter has worked closely with former graduate students to establish transformative education approaches in Nepal, Mozambique, South Africa, The Philippines, Indonesia, Japan, Brazil and Saudi Arabia. 

Transformative Education: Post/Enlightenment Thinking for Sustainable Development

Together, the disciplines of science, technology, engineering and mathematics are a powerful driver of global economic growth. Business and industry are compelling STEM educators to produce graduates with higher-order abilities – creative and innovative thinking – for the high-tech workforce of the 21st Century. Equally, there is an urgent need to ensure the sustainable development of our planet’s natural resources and diverse cultures. As UNESCO has long advocated, education for sustainable development is urgently needed to prepare young people with higher-order abilities for resolving ethical issues associated with the global impact of science and technology (driven by economic imperatives); especially harmful side effects such as climate change.

Visionary educators are addressing these competing economic, environmental and socio-cultural needs by integrating Arts and STEM disciplines to create innovative STEAM curricula aimed at educating the whole person. However, Enlightenment era thinking that maintains STEM disciplines as ‘silos’ bolsters curriculum and assessment authorities and teacher preparation institutions to resist this nascent revolution. Nevertheless, the revolution is in good hands: transformative education provides post/Enlightenment thinking for addressing the competing educational needs of our rapidly globalising societies.

Keynote Abstract 02

FRIDAY, 21 OCTOBER 2016                            CONFERENCE HALL, 10:10 TO 10:50

Prof Mahesh Nath Parajuli, PhD

Dean, School of Education, Kathmandu University

2Prof Mahesh Nath Parajuli is the Dean of the School of Education, Kathmandu University, Nepal.  He has over 30 years of experience of working in education and development, mainly in the government ministry and in the academia. As the Editor-in-Chief of the journal, Journal of Education and Research, a publication of Kathmandu University, School of Education, he has earned international reputation for educational research. He has published several articles in national and international journals and book chapters on different aspects of education and development.

 

Areas of his expertise include education sociology, development studies, gender studies and feminism, policy and planning, and research methods.  One of his foremost interest areas is studying education processes in relation to several other processes of the society.  Specifically, his interest is in understanding how education interplays with other social processes like politics, economy, culture, etc. and how during such interplaying education contributes to or influences those processes and how education, in turn, is influenced by those processes.  These understandings, he believes, very much contributes to social transformation process.

He sees strong needs for reengineering the structure and design of the present form of schooling.  This is mainly because schooling in many parts of the world, mainly in developing countries, has remained an external and standardized process.  As a result, schooling across the world is basically the same, while societies and people are highly diverse. This is also because the present day schooling has ignored the Knowledge Heritage – locally developed system and practices of knowing and educating.  Hence, there is a need to align schooling more with the local sociocultural context, make it more flexible and open, and make the learning process directly related to livelihood and other human needs of individual learner and of the society. 

Recognizing Knowledge Heritage: A Transformative Education Research Agenda 

Keynote Abstract 03

FRIDAY, 21 OCTOBER 2016                            CONFERENCE HALL, 14:00 TO 14:40

Karanam Pushpanadham

Professor, The Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda, Gujarat, India

3Prof. Karanam Pushpanadham is a Professor of Educational Management at the Faculty of Education and Psychology, the Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda, Gujarat, India. He was the member of Senate and Dean of Students. He has been to several countries in Asia and Europe to address the conferences and seminar. He is commissioned several international research projects in Education. Involved in capacity building for teachers and teacher educators in ESD and Eco System Services and its application for creating safe school environment. Project Director of IB school evaluation program. European Union’s Erasmus Mundus Visiting Professor at the Department of Education, Aarhus University, and Copenhagen, Denmark. He is the recipient of Swedish Institutes’ Fellowship as Guest Professor at the Institute of International Education, Stockholm University in Sweden. Trained Teacher educator on Education for Sustainable Development by Swedish International Development Agency, Sweden. Organized Sida sponsored International workshop on ICT and Pedagogic Development. He has published several books and research articles in reputed journals of education. He is currently working in the area of Transformational Leadership in Education, Digital Learning, Data Mining and Management in Educational Research, Education for Rural Transformation and Global Citizenship. He has guided 8 PhD students and currently doctoral students are pursing research under his guidance. 

Transformational Leadership in Education for Sustainable Development

Sustainable Development is the priority of the 21st Century all over the world as it is the development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. Such a perspective to development involves a progressive transformation of society and well-being of people. The basic purpose of education is to develop a clear understanding among the people about self and others that links with the wider social environment in the context of human life and living. It serves as basis for enhancing knowledge, acquiring skills, imbibing values, building respect, a sense of justice, responsibility and exploration. Education thus improves the capacity of people to tackle the emerging challenges and developmental issues. Education is transformative in nature and it involves:

  • Deep thinking, feelings and actions towards life and living
  • Self awareness and our relationships with others in the world
  • Personal Mastery that enables a person to learn, create a personal vision and view the world objectively.

Transformational Leadership is the key factor for transformative education and it is concerned with the process of how leaders are capable to inspire their followers to accomplish more than is usually expected them to do; recognize and attempt to address each follower’s needs; act in a way to get trust and admire them; make them to think beyond conventional ways. Bass (1988) described transformational leadership is composed of four characteristics; Idealized Influence, Inspirational Motivation, Intellectual Stimulation and Individualized Consideration.

Many   research studies found that transformational leadership in education contributes to effective teaching, student educational achievements and attaining desired objectives in the classrooms by attending to the needs of the learners, motivation and behavior.  Transformational leadership influences teacher’s commitment to change, high performance, personal recognition, and communication. Leaders who encourage and support transformation leadership share power, are willing to learn from others, and are sensitive to each team member’s needs for achievement and growth.

This paper highlights the essential attributes of transformational leadership in Education which promotes transformative change in the mindset of people and society in general and elaborates the process through which such leadership skills are developed among teachers. Perceptions of teachers with respect to their roles and responsibilities in schools, their self-efficacy and professionalism are discussed with empirical data collected from Indian teachers. This paper also attempts to discuss the recent reforms in teacher education in India with specific reference to teacher leadership for transformative education. 

Keywords: Transformational Leadership, teacher leadership, sustainable development, teacher accountability and professionalism 

Keynote Abstract 04

SATURDAY, 22 OCTOBER 2016                       CONFERENCE HALL, 8:30 TO 9:10 

Kenneth Tobin

4Presidential Professor, Graduate Center of CUNY

Kenneth Tobin is Presidential Professor of Urban Education at the Graduate Center of CUNY. In 1973 Tobin began a program of research on teaching and learning that continues to the present day. The current emphasis of his work involves mindfulness, wellness, environmental harmony, and the transformative potential of social research. Tobin has published more than twenty books, two hundred refereed journal articles, and one hundred twenty five book chapters. He is recipient of numerous awards, including Distinguished Contributions to Science Education through Research Award (2007, National Association for Research in Science Teaching), Mentoring Award as an exemplary scholar and mentor (2008, Division G, American Educational Research Association), and the National Science Foundation Director’s award for Distinguished Teaching Scholars (2004). 

Researching and improving wellness: everyone and everywhere
Through the lenses of sociocultural theory our research squad has been studying emotions and ways in which teaching and learning are enacted in urban schools, within and close to inner-city Philadelphia and New York in the United States. Our studies have been designed to be transformative for individuals and collectives involved in the research and thereafter to larger communities of participants.

My presentation will begin with a review of what we have learned from almost two decades of research on the expression of emotions in urban schools where the chief issues included race, poverty, language proficiency, gender, and religion In so doing I will sketch a landscape of what we have learned in a context of continuous and devolving research in urban classrooms. A major focus will be the use of breathing meditation to increase mindfulness, including unattaching from emotions and would-be-distractions. I will describe our use of heuristics to heighten awareness about characteristics of mindfulness. Foci for the heuristics we developed included emotional styles identified from research in social neuroscience (i.e., resilience, outlook, social intuition, self-awareness, sensitivity to context, and attention), and constructs such as listening, speaking, and cogenerative dialogue.

For the past several years the primary focus of our research has been ways to ameliorate excess emotions and address everyday health issues. Our framing of wellness regards many, and perhaps all, health projects as being catalyzed by emotions that disharmonize the body. I will present current and ongoing research involving an ancient knowledge system, Jin Shin Jyutsu (JSJ), which was lost and then retrieved in the 20th century. Our research on JSJ focuses on educating communities to use self-help techniques to address disharmonies and associated symptoms such as headaches, allergies, physical injuries, panic attacks, high blood pressure, and myriad everyday health issues that might otherwise be resolved by pharmaceuticals and visits to doctors. I will also provide examples of our collaborative research on big label health projects, including multiple sclerosis and diabetes 2.

Our research on wellness has shifted from schools to everywhere, and from participants aged between 4 and 20 years to encompass a birth through death continuum. We embrace a multilogical approach to research using frameworks that include hermeneutic phenomenology, authentic inquiry, sociology of emotions and culture, Jin Shin Jyutsu, and anti-inflammation diets. I will address specific challenges that are paramount, including crypto-positivism, scientism, deficit-laden critiques of knowledge systems that are non-mainstream, others’ insistence on commensurability, and our adherence to polysemia.

I will conclude by supporting a call for science educators and science education to assume major roles in educating and researching the extent to which the global public addresses global challenges associated with wellness of humanity and well-being of the earth and its constituent ecosystems. 

Keynote Abstract 05

SATURDAY, 22 OCTOBER 2016                       CONFERENCE HALL, 9:10 TO 9:50 

Bishal Sitaula

bishalProfessor, Department of International Environment and Development Studies, Norwegian University of Life Sciences (UMB)

Prof Bishal Sitaula has more than 26 years of international experience in research, teaching and collaboration in the following topics: ecology and global change issues, higher education, conflict peace and development including wisdom and personal transformation. From his Norwegian base he has led multinational programs and worked with partners in Asia (Nepal, India, Pakistan, Bhutan Afghanistan, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh), Africa (Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania, Malawi) and Western Balkans (Serbia, Monte Negro, Bosnia Herzegovina, Macedonia and Croatia). Prof. Sitaula has published 150 scientific articles, and has been cited 768 times. At present, Prof. Sitaula leads several university projects in Africa, Western Balkan and South Asia including Global Change Education  and Research in Africa and Balkan, and, NRM Conflict, Peace and Development (CPDS) in Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. He is the Founder member and past President of Non Resident Nepali Association NRNA NCC- Norway and former Vice Chair of International Association of Human Values-Norway (IAHV).Part of his social engagement is to globalise the science of wisdom and personal transformation.

Resilience Thinking and Personal Transformation for Addressing Global Crises Using Wisdom Tradition

Resilience is one’s ability to bounce back from a negative experience with “competent functioning”. When we face obstacles, disorienting dilemmas how do we move forward? Wisdom tradition from India and Nepal provides insights exactly to build resilience in our lives. Global crises including climate change is a multi-dimensional problem, not just social or environmental one. Its primary causes and consequences are deeply rooted in the human mind. And so the solutions must be search within us. The materialism, consumerism, and, severe erosion of human values are widespread problems for our planet. Naturally, materialism will increase consumerism because extreme materialism creates greed, attachment, ego etc., which eventually leads to severe depletion of natural resources. A sense of collectivity and co-existence is becoming something which is only seen in books. It is obvious that education which is not turned into wisdom in the end creates various form of consumerism and collectively leads to different form of global crises. Therefore any global challenges should be understood in linked context as they are rather complex phenomena influenced by different factors and processes following the Buddhist idea of dependent origination. The growing need for interdisciplinary work across the natural, social and noetic/yogic science demands that each achieve some common understandings about current and emerging global crises as multidimensional issues and in linked contexts. Among others, to understand this better, one must first of all identify the linkages between environmental problems that deeply rooted in human greed and its manifestation in various forms such as biodiversity losses, climate change and land degradation. All these three major components of global environmental challenges are linked together in a complex cybernetics network of feedbacks. If one component is altered, it will produce a change in the other components in more complex way than presently understood.

To address these problems at their source will require understanding of human desires and how this can be balanced by popularising human value and noetic sciences for personal and social transformation. There are international initiatives for enhancing coordination between the individual/social behaviours and the links between climate change, biodiversity and desertification. There are also research challenges for unfolding the linkages between environment and security, particularly between environmental causes, such as natural disasters, water shortages and famine, and their effects on the security of people and societies. The issues of global food challenges and environmental degradation leading violent conflict are a recent focus of scientific investigation. One of the effects of environmental degradation is the large displacement of people creating a large flux of environmental refugees. All these linked problems require a rarely seen collaboration among scientists and spiritual masters. Therefore, science of wellbeing as shaped by human values including noetic/consciousness-based spiritual sciences coupled with environmental science appears quite essential in the present time. The quest is how to tailor such course curricula in universities that effectively establishes the memory of wholeness in students who will a part of solution in “Being”, “Thinking” and “Doing” for addressing   global environmental challenges. We need to search for resilience thinning and explore the capacity and willingness of humans to transform themselves using wisdom tradition that is available in Nepal and India.

Keynote Abstract 06

SUNDAY, 23 OCTOBER 2016                          CONFERENCE HALL, 08:30 TO 09:10 

Shantha Liyanage

6Professorial Fellow, University of Technology Sydney

Shantha Liyanage is a research coordinator at the Department of Education and Communities and a professorial fellow of the University of Technology Sydney.  He held senior academic positions as the Associate Professor and Director of Technology Management Centre of the University of Queensland where he developed innovative eLearning postgraduate programs in technology and innovation management. During his professorial tenure at the University of Auckland New Zealand, he contributed to disciplines of leadership, innovation and entrepreneurial research and teaching.   He also held professorial appointments with the Macquarie University in Sydney and the University of Technology Sydney and had contributed to teaching and research in innovation and entrepreneurial learning. He was active with international researchers and engaged in leadership research with physicists in the ATLAS project of CERN, Geneva.   He completed numerous consultancy assignments for various Governments, International development Agencies such as the Asian Development Bank, the World Bank, UNESCO, SIDA/SAREC, UNIDO and AusAid. He is the editor-in-chief of the International Journal of Leaning and Change, Inderscience, UK. 

Future Pedagogies for Transformation
The educational landscape is changing rapidly with new ways of learning and engaging.  The achievement of better
schooling, teaching and students outcomes is the goal of this change.  Future learning and teaching requires new pedagogies that are student centred and relevant to changing needs of learners.   Learners are increasingly required to possess knowledge and skills that are multifaceted and relevant.  With rapid changes to industry structures and the world economy, learners need to possess academic credentials as well as relevant skills and knowledge that are agile and portable.  Acquiring such knowledge and relevant skills is not an easy task for both educational institutions and practitioners and these institutions need significant transformation to provide better environments for teaching and learning for all students.  This keynote address outlines the overarching directions of the educational enterprise and aspirations of teachers and students to address general capabilities that provide a sound basis for learning and engagement and improved practices and classrooms in the Asian context.  Using entrepreneurial learning, the challenges in developing
knowledge, skills, attitudes and personal qualities appropriate to the age and development of the learner from primary school throughout life-long learning are discussed.  New epistemological space for educators and students are outlined as socially and culturally situated leaning that provides critical reflection and social, community and cultural embeddedness.  It is argued that transformative learning occurs when students confronts a new and challenging concept or ways of thinking and then follow through to make a significant life changes with inquiry-based learning.

Keynote Abstract 07

SUNDAY, 23 OCTOBER 2016                          CONFERENCE HALL, 11:20 TO 12:00 

Bal Chandra Luitel

Associate Professor and Associate Dean, Kathmandu University School of Education

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Dr. Bal Chandra Luitel is Associate Dean of School of Education and Associate Professor of Mathematics Education at Kathmandu University, School of Education. He completed his PhD from the Science and Mathematics Education Centre, Curtin University of Technology Australia. Subscribing to research as transformative professional development, Dr. Luitel’s research program aims to address the protracted problem of culturally decontextualised mathematics, science and technology education faced by South Asian students. Unsurprisingly, he uses multiple ways of knowing so as to represent multi-faceted nature of the problem, thereby offering visions for inclusive and life-affirming mathematics, science and technology education. More so, he draws from the Eastern and Western philosophical and wisdom traditions with a view to crystallising fusions of possibilities. Dr. Luitel leads a Transformative Education Research Centre at Kathmandu University, School of Education.

Transforming Education Research in the South: Challenges, Prospects and Opportunities

The longstanding grip of positivism through its various avatars (e.g. crypto-positivism, neo-positivism) have often posed a challenge for transforming educational research from filling a jigsaw puzzle towards making it an endeavour of liberatory epistemology, a much needed perspective in researching for empowerment, social justice and meaning-centred education. The widespread notion that educational research needs data and analysis is a subtle and powerful example of how positivism makes its home secure even in the discourse of so-called non-positivist research traditions. The widespread hitherto belief among academics and researchers that educational research should be entirely guided by deductive, analytical and propositional logics and genres has enliven Comptean positivism to patrol the border of educational research community.

Despite these challenges, recent developments in applying liberatory epistemologies have shown a bright horizon among the Universities in the South. The upsurge of decolonising methodologies embedded in the indigenous practices are likely to enable researchers and scholars to explore more nuanced forms of methodological possibilities of liberatory epistemology. Similarly, arts-based approaches to researching various educational and social issues have opened up possibilities in knowing human conditions in different social and educational settings. Arts-based educational research offers exciting opportunities to employ otherwise unaccounted modes of representation, such as ethno-drama, poetry, storytelling, to name but a few. With the advent of various ICT platforms, this possibility has been much broadened.