Centre for Research in Education Inclusion and Diversity (CREID)

Think Tank 1: Lifelong learning and equity in Scotland (13 Nov 2008)

A knowledge exchange programme supported by the Scottish Funding Council.

Knowledge exchange on public policy in Scotland: Promoting best practice on equality and human rights in Scotland

Venue Mercure Point Hotel, Bread Street, Edinburgh
Date 13th November, 2008
Time 11.00am - 4.00pm

A briefing paper will be circulated before the meeting covering policy and legislative context and key SG and Eurostat statistics. After the event, a publicly available briefing paper will be produced and widely circulated, contextualising the discussion and summarising the various inputs from speakers and participants.

The Scottish Government, in its Economic Strategy produced in 2007, stated a commitment to accelerating sustainable economic growth and identified a number of strategic priorities that are recognised to be critical to economic growth. These include learning, skills and well-being and equity. A new approach was signalled to lifelong learning, focusing on the production of ‘a supply of education and skills which is responsive to, and aligned with, actions to boost demand’. This think tank will analyse how Scotland compares in the field of lifelong learning with England and other European countries in the ‘arc of prosperity’, particularly Norway and Ireland. It will present findings from a recently conducted survey (part of the EU LLL2010 project) investigating why learners with different prior levels of attainment return to education. From the same research project, data will be presented on workers’ experiences of workplace learning in high skilled enterprises and those involved in manufacturing and construction. Research on the experiences of non-traditional learners in an ancient Scottish university will also be presented, reflecting on the challenges encountered by programmes seeking to deliver greater equity.

The specific aims of this event are:

  • to share knowledge on the topic of lifelong learning and equity in Scotland, involving a range of bodies including Scottish Government, Scottish Funding Council, Equality Forward, local authorities, academics and third sector organisations
  • to draw some international comparisons between Scotland, England and other European countries in relation to lifelong learning and equity
  • to reflect on the knowledge exchange process and draw lessons for future events
  • to produce a briefing with a ‘state of the art’ assessment of the current picture and key issues affecting Scotland

Event documents