The objective of Badge Europe is to promote the idea of Open Badges for all! in Europe. Already a number of initiatives have spawned such as Badge the UK using Mozilla Open Badges "to enable the worldwide recognition of in-demand workplace skills and create new employment opportunities for young people." Last October, during the 2013 Mozfest in London, this initiative expanded into Badge the World, a campaign that will be the meeting point for individual, local, regional and international initiatives. We aim at making Badge Europe one of the key contributors to this initiative.
In 2004, during the second international ePortfolio conference at La Rochelle (France) we launched the idea of ePortfolio for all! We declared that "by 2010, every citizen will have an ePortfolio! " Despite a growing number of ePortfolio initiatives we are still very far from achieving this. This declaration has not (yet?) become a self-fulfilling prophecy. So, why is Open Badges for all! might more likely to succeed than the initiative launched 10 years ago?
There are a number of reasons to believe that Open Badges for all! is more likely to succeed:
- Simplicity: it is an uncomplicated object — the Lego™ bloc of learning achievements!
- Granularity: it is possible to get a badge for something big or small and to combine them into something meaningful
- Openness: the open badge infrastructure (OBI) is open, so every service and application can plug-in
- Innovation: is a beneficial consequence of openness; new ideas emerge and are rapidly translated into new services
- Trust: Open Badges are the elementary building blocks of trusted identities
- Adoption: adoption of Open Badges is very straightforward and is focused on practice, technology is a given
One major difference can be noticed between the early development of ePortfolios and Open badges: initial ePortfolio development rapidly became divergent resulting in the emergence of a series of non-interoperable platforms/silos. Later attempts were made to correct this lack of interoperability*. The current state of Open Badges development is (still) convergent: Open Badges are true learning objects, capturing the requirements, experience and learning of a whole community of practitioners and developers. This is without any doubt the result of the open leadership provided by the Mozilla foundation.
Open Badges are the opportunity to create the conditions for the worldwide recognition of learning achievements and to place formal and informal recognition of learning on a par. Join us in the campaign to Badge Europe and Badge the World.
- To make your project visible on the map, use the form accessible at www.openbadges.eu.
- To publish information in this space, you need to register on the Europortfolio portal and join Badge Europe at www.openbadges.eu.
We look forward to hearing your thoughts and suggestions to make Badge Europe a success.