World Learning Summit 2024

Learning in a post-truth world

– Global crisis: A learning challenge
– Extremism: A learning Challenge
– Social media overload
– Media Literacy
– Knowledge & memory
– Post-Covid Learning
– Education in the post-truth age

– Trust and confidence in attention-overloaded society
– challenges of artificial intelligence
– Pedagogy & attention in mediatized society
– Virtual spaces of learning
– (why) Question the Virtues of online learning
– The student voice in education reform
– Education in a post-truth world

Future Learning Lab


We live in an information-rich time and society, where attention has become a premium resource. How do we understand “attention work” in an age of social media? How does the question relate to concerns with education and learning? The interdisciplinary challenge is as clear and present as ever: Since 2010 we have worked to make World Learning Summit a space for reflection and sharing of experience based on insights from teaching, from research and from exploring the constantly developing ecosystem of educational technologies that represent both potentials and hindrances.

Welcome to our 2023 World Learning Summit, where our keynotes and plenary panels will explore the theme of trust and confidence in a post-truth age. We are familiar with the concerts of “fake news”, “filter bubbles”,  “echo chambers”, and the like. Behind them is the concern with the impacts of social media in recent years, the ways in which the internet is is developing, concerns with artificial intelligence and public dialog structured by algorithms in a global media monopoly.

Navigating this ecosystem is a challenge for students and educators alike, for administrators, teachers and custodians of institutional ICT systems. Our 2023 WLS engages with these themes and terms in the fashion familiar to WLS returnees: World class keynotes, inclusive debates and informal talks enabled through our keeping the conference small enough for meetings that matter.

ARKIVET Peace and Human Rights Centre is an education- and documentation centre based in Kristiansand in the southern part of Norway.

ARKIVET Peace and Human Rights Centre studies how the retelling of our local history from World War II can help create attitudes, knowledge, and understanding in order to secure the basis for lasting peace and democracy.

The centre contributes with research, education and information activities, exhibitions and conferences.

Summit themes, papers,
panels & workshops

World Learning Summit 2023 is our 12th annual event, starting out in 2011 with a first conference on the theme of education´s digital transformation. Education and technology is still an important theme for us, but we invite papers and workshops that contextualize uses of educational tools and platforms. Our mission is to explore and cultivate a sense of educational technology in context; the challenges that come with it, understood within the institutional challenges now facing education globally at all levels. These are big themes. And it explains why we try to keep the annual summit small enough for conversations and networking to matter. Please join us or contact us on the message platform at the bottom of this page.


Key focal points at our summits

Continued conversations

Many WLS attendees return year after year -- some have been to all our events. We strive to keep conversations alive, centering on themes of relevance for our community.

Our blended learning eco system

Staking out a course and a claim in the digital landscape is as challenging for individuals as it is for institutions.
Join our network

Network building

A considerable number of projects have come out of our summits. We strive to create an informal atmosphere of engagement, observing open collaboration as key to new projects.

What is a conference worth?

We travel to conferences for a variety of reasons. Some events are big, some small. WLS is large enough to matter, small enough to make new friends.
Join our network

Learning Innovations

The ecosystem of higher education is constantly changing, the main factor that does not change being lack of time to reorient oneself. We strive to create an environment of support, sharing ideas and experiences in course design.

Where no one has gone before....

Playing it safe or taking chances, we all benefit from listening to the experiences and reflections of others. WLS addresses pedagogy in that wide a context.
Past summits overview


We are all entrepreneurs, combining resources in new ways as we seek to understand and make use of the digital eco system of networked learning spaces. With WLS our ambition is to strengthen that support amongst those attending.

The half full glass & the half empty one

Systems and structures restrict us, while imagination is what creates the learning experience worth remembering. How do we balance the act?
Watch this video

Global orientation

World Learning Summit has had attendees from close to 40 countries over the years, and we seek to strengthen that global connection with a particular focus on the North-South dialog, through focus on the UN sustainability goals.

Local learning

Learning is ultimately local, because people are. Yet, increasingly we belong in global networks, with widely different access to technology. Another balancing act worth our attention.
21st century literacy

speakers and Program

Opening keynote: Donna Kidwell

Inclusion and exclusion in digital cultures: Working notes from a Chief Technology Officer

Human and social dimensions of science and technology are becoming increasingly clear, making the challenge of transdisciplinary research all the more relevant.  Society´s digital transformation calls for dialog between with scientists, engineers, policymakers, business and community officials and the.

In this keynote, we ask: What aspects of the humanities, information sciences and social sciences provides with new insights to engender that dialog?Examples will be drawn from working with tribal communities in the US South-West to provide bridges into higher education.

Donna Kidwell is the current Chief Information Secutity and Digital Trust Officer at Arizona State University. She is also co-chair of the World Learning Summit.

Featured Keynote: Adah Parris

Living + Tech:
Stories of learning, creativity and transformation

Adah Parris is a futurist, story-teller, cultural strategist and highly versatile speaker. She is the creator of Cyborg Shamanism, an innovation model that subverts the ‘status quo’, drawing parallels between various digital and spiritual ecosystems. A polymath and enthusiastic curator of people, patterns and stories, Adah was recognised as one of the UK’s Top 100 Black and Minority Ethnic (BAME) Leaders in Technology in 2018.

With over 20 years’ experience in transforming cultures to create human blockchains – decentralised human ecosystems of trust and transparency – Adah has worked with businesses and individuals in advertising, education, entertainment, entrepreneurship, marketing, media, and technology start-ups.

She has worked with a wide range of clients, including: Sainsbury’s, Google, Unilever, Oath, Ogilvy Labs, The British Council, The EU Council, The Tate Modern, the British Film Institute (BFI), The Union Chapel, Burning Man Camp: Playground, ArabNet Dubai, Innovate Finance, and many more. 

In this keynote Adah Parris addresses how the rapid advancements in technology are transforming society and our capacity for learning. She emphasizes the importance of cultural depth and suggests that we should ask questions that prioritize culture and the epistemology of technology, over the technology itself. Additionally, she advocates for a lens that prioritizes the planet and considers how our actions impact the environment, enabling a more culture-driven societal transformation that benefits all life on Earth.”

Theme keynote:
Alexandre Le Voci Sayad

Media Literacy in the post-truth age: Reflections from a researcher, artist and media critic.

Communications revolutions of recent years raise new questions concerning teachers´and students´critical awareness of texts, sources, contexts, facts and fictions. Educators call for more institutional support in dealing with these challenges. Students and educators alike experience changes in attention spans, perhaps in part caused by information and attention overloads?

Alexandre currently works in the media and information literacy field as a researcher, practitioner, advocate and professor. He is international co-chairman of UNESCO MIL Alliance and member of the board of the IC4ML (International Council for Media Literacy).

Special guest

Beth Rudden

CEO Bast.ai | Distinguished Engineer and Cognitive Scientist

Beth Rudden has a 20+ year long career at IBM, with the background of technical development and IT architecture. Her growth in data storytelling mixed with her mastery in anthropology paved the way for driving transformation in cognitive science and trusted AI.

She transitioned out of her corporate roles at IBM into other roles that supported her goal of giving back to the innovation community, by designing methodologies that empower humans to thrive in arenas of access and opportunity.

She holds a patent that supports the control of access to files and has a deep portfolio of other achievements which supports her ethos of transforming lives through ethical data use.

Beth Rudden is a highly profiled international speaker, with a particular interest in how artificial intelligence is now impacting on institutions of learning and education.



September 26th PhD Colloquium, Day 1

PhD students and candidate are invited to present papers, receive peer critique for publication. Program develops as participants sign up. The colloquium is open to all WLS attendees who wish to arrive before the main summit on May 25th and 26th.

September 27th PhD Colloquium, day 2

PhD paper presentations continue. All PhD candidates who also attend the WLS main event on May 25th and 26th receive a certificate of completion recommending the colloqium and main event result in the recipient receiving a 5 ECTS equivalence in their home PhD programs. The recommendation is given upon our receipt of a complete and publishable PhD course paper. The candidates are free to publish their papers elsewhere, while we also offer publication possibilities in our WLS 2023 proceedings.

September 28th Summit, day 1

The program contains keynotes and panels in the morning, with paper presentations and break-out workshops following in the afternoon. Please confer program details on the menu at the top of this page. CONFERENCE DINNER THIS EVENING.

September 29th Summit, Day 2

Paper presentations and break-out workshops in the morning, plenary debate sessions in the afternoon. Summit ends with a summary panel and WLS 2023 award ceremony for best paper.

Speakers added continuously

More speakers, panelists, workshop hosts

Four eventful days

PhD Colloquium, Day 1

PhD candidates present papers. Program will develop until May 1st. Open to all WLS 2023 attendees.

Free for PhD candidates and registered WLS attendees

May 23rd

PhD Colloquium, Day 2

PhD candidates present papers. WLS attendees interested in a project writer´s workshop sign up for that at no extra cost.

Free for PhD candidates and registered WLS attendees

May 24th

Main Summit, Day 1

Keynotes, panels, debates and presentation of papers in groups defined by summit themes.

€ 120 full fare
2 days
€ 50 Early Registration

May 25th

Main Summit, Day 2

Panels and paper presentations continue. Closing publication panel, presenting WLS23 proceedings outline.

€ 120 full fare
2 Days
€ 50 Sponsored & bulk Registration

May 26th

Our 2023 WLS Event team

Cathy Casserly

Independent consultant. Formerly CEO of Creative Commons and Vice President for Education at EdCast.

Oddgeir Tveiten

Professor of media studies University of Agder and journalism studies @ NLA University College.

Vidar Mortensen

Entrepreneur and consultant at Moment, with particular focus on start-ups within the areas of creative industries and education

Donna Kidwell

Chief Information and Digital Trust Officer at Arizona State University. Founding member of the Trusted Learner Network.

2023 program editorial group

Phil Long

Senior Scholar at the Georgetown University Center for New Designs in Learning and Scholarship

Anjum Malik

Executive Director Global Impact Initiative and Managing Partner Alhambra US Chamber, Austin, US

Thomas Bauer

Professor Emeritus in media studies, University of Vienna. Widely traveled keynote speaker

Phil Komarny

Global entrepreneur, former VP of Innovation @ Salesforce, WLS team member since 2018

Mohammed Zuhdi

Head of Quality Assurance Institute of UIN Syarif Hidayatullah Jakarta.

Ebba Ossiannilsson

Independent researcher and ICDE consultant in open, online, and distance learning

Stephen Dobson

Dean of Education and the Arts at Central Queensland University in Australia

June Breivik

Assistant Head of Secretariat, Norwegian Education Association. EdTech expert

More information?

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About Us

World Learning Summit is an annual conference on the digital transformation of higher education — pedagogical, socio-cultural and organizational challenges.

What is the WLS mission?

Civilization-changing media are now challenging institutions and individuals in education to explore an ecosystem tha develops at an accelerating speed. The quality of our meeting that challenge depends on our capability of cultivating an interdisciplinary dialog.

Can I sign up to present?

Yes, by following the links on this website you can sign up to present either a single paper/project, a workshop or you can suggest a panel theme by also providing a minimum of three members to that panel. All presenters earn free entry to the conference.

Is there a sponsor plan?

Yes, WLS comes with a sponsorplan where sponsors earn free tickets and entry to VIP events, by agreement. Sponsorship includes promotion on our website, as well as in our summit proceedings. Sponsors may participate in planning future WLS events. Contact us for more details.

Who hosts the event?

WLS is hosted annually by the Future Learning Network and supported by several institutions from year to year. The team is organized under thew Futuer Learning Lab at Agder University in Norway,. with members from about a dozen other countries participating in shaping each event.

Fee return policy

Please see the ticketing page for details on deadlines.

News letter updates

Please use the form above to sign up for our newsletter.

PhD work

As a contribution to inter-disciplinary research and research-driven innovation WLS offers the option to organize PhD colloquium where participating PhD candidates present ongoing papers as part of their PhD course work and publication demands.

A few of our past summit speakers

A university president

Former president of the University of Iceland Kristin Ingolfsdottir came to our 2018 summit, devlivering a great keynote on the challenges of digital transformation of universities and colleges.

And Google´s Chief Scientist

Peter Norvig, who participated in our 2015 summit at Stanford University and traveled to Kristiansand to keynote in our 2016 Summit.
More info on previous speakers

A global entepreneur

Karl Mehta, co-hosted our 2015 summit at Stanford, traveling twice to Norway for WLS events in 2018. As founder of the learning platform EdCast, he has hosted us on many of our workshops in Silicon Valley.

A MOOC specialist from Nigeria

Jane Agbu, talking about Education Technologies in her part of Africa, at our Smart Universities conference in 2017. Ms. Agbu is an education specialist from Nigeria.
More info on previous speakers

A futures thinker

Formerly a Vice President at the global company Salesforce, Phil Komarny now works for Maryville University of St. Louis, reshaping their approach to student digital well-being. He is a member of our team.

And an EdTech pioneer from Norway

Eilif Trondsen was our first keynoter and has been a member of our team since 2010. Living in California, he has had a great impact on "Nordics" coming to Silicon Valley to learn and connect.
More info on previous speakers

Creative Commons

A former CEO of Creative Commons, Carthy Casserly co-designed our 2015 summit at Stanford University and has come to almost all our events in Norway. She is an Aspen Institute fellow and former VP of EdCast.

A University Dean

Stephen Dobson is Dean of the Faculty of Education at Queensland UNiversity, Australia, and Adjunct Professor 2 at Innlandet University in Norway.
More info on previous speakers

A world class designer

Rosan Bosch, a Durtch designer living and working in Copenhagen, gave us one of the all-time high keynotes in 2018, reflecting on the role of places and spaces in designing good learning environments.

A University CTO

Donna Kidwell, CTO at Arizona State University, held the third of our conference keynotes in 2013 and has since then been a member of our summit team.
More info on previous speakers

What people have said about previous World Learning Summits



World Learning Summit 2023


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