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Conference “Cultures of Program Planning in Adult Education: Policies, Autonomy, and Innovation”


International conference of the expert group on program research in Hannover (Institute of Vocational Education and Adult Education)

As yet, program planning in adult education has not been well researched on an international level. This is rather surprising, considering that the planning and provision of programs for adults is one of the core activities of the professional personnel working in adult education.

Furthermore, crucial issues of adult education concerning policies, autonomy, or innovation may be focused by taking a closer look at programs and by investigating how they are developed. The expert group is the first cooperation of scholars from different Universities which is going to develop further research activities, international topics and aspects to bring further comparative research in adult education in that specific field (

The professional action of program planning comprises all activities needed for developing programs, individual educational courses, or projects. It is about finding topics, formulating offers and bundling different contents into programs or even profiles of organizations of adult and further education.
Program planning secures the curricular structures/supply structures of organizations of adult and further education; – it even and above all legitimizes the organization as such.

Programs reveal trends and developments in the diverse content areas (areas of study) of adult and further education (arts and culture, health, languages, professional training, basic education, etc.); they throw light on the specific concept of education and/or competence they reflect at a given time as well as on the addressees they aim at and the manner in which these are addressed.

The analyses of programs and of planning actions create links to diverse discourses; these can refer to types of organizations (adult education center, university, company and so forth), to topic or content areas (e.g. art/cultural education), to regions and localities, to educational-political instruments and policies.

Objectives of the conference:

1. To stimulate exchange between scholars and establish international networks in the field of program planning and program analysis.

2. To make research on program planning and program analysis more visible on an international level. To analyze and compare different models used to explain program planning. To contextualize program planning within diverse national and international contexts. To shed light on tensions and contradictions between new public management, educational actions and provisions.

3. To find comparative frameworks for international research on program planning. To highlight differences and commonalities with regard to terminologies, categories, theories, and methods. To map the field of research on program planning.

4. To present existing archives that collect programs. To discuss possible ways of access and of meeting new challenges such as the digital shift. What kinds of innovations are made possible by being able to access programs worldwide rather easily via the internet?

5. To make visible study programs in adult education that teach program planning. How are key competences in program planning being taught? Which challenges are being encountered and what kind of innovative solutions are being found in teaching program planning, – a field that is generally not being considered fashionable at present?

Dates: September 28th - 29th, 2015
Venue: Leibniz Universitaet Hannover, Germany
Organizer: Leibniz Universitaet Hannover (Prof. Steffi Robak), the German Institute for Adult Education in Bonn (Dr. Marion Fleige, Dr. Klaus Heuer) and the Humboldt University Berlin (Prof. Aiga von Hippel, Prof. Bernd Käpplinger, Prof. Wiltrud Gieseke); a joint activity by the expert group on program planning

Conference Website:

Hinweis an die Redaktion:
Für weitere Informationen steht Ihnen Prof. Dr. Steffi Robak, Institut für Erwachsenenbildung an der Leibniz Universität Hannover, unter Telefon +49 511 762 5602 oder per E-Mail unter gern zur Verfügung.

Mechtild Freiin v. Münchhausen | idw - Informationsdienst Wissenschaft

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