TWO key conference dates in Brussels for UWTSD's Professor Andy Penaluna


UWTSD’s Professor Andy Penluna is in Brussels this week, presenting at an Ented Practice into Policy event, on May 11 and addressing the Digital Competence Framework (DigComp) and the Entrepreneurship Competence Framework (EntreComp) on May 12.

Tedx Headshot of Andy

Professor Penaluna will be joined by UWTSD’s Enterprise Manager Kathryn Penaluna, sharing a stage with 60 experts to consider a range of projects and case studies on Entrepreneurial Learning. UWTSD is the only UK university presenting at the event, which aims to bring together stakeholders from every sector with an ‘interest in supporting new thinking and understanding of what it means to be entrepreneurial and to have a sense of initiative in today’s challenging and ever changing society,’ to create a new framework to effect and drive change.

Professor Penaluna said: "In 2014 UWTSD held a new type of global summit in Swansea that for the very first time, passed messages up to those in power. Practice into Policy reverses the idea that we only do what policy makers suggest, and aims to let them know what is already happening on the ground.

“There is a global understanding that much of what we do in education is no longer fit for purpose, and that more innovative enterprising minds are essential to future success.  We are extremely proud to work with Bantani in Brussels to take this to the next stage. For the very first time all European Commission projects on this have a chance to share their work on helping educators. Over 60 experts who have received European funding will share more than 32 case studies, discuss the opportunities and link up with senior policy makers. UWTSD is not only engaging with the latest thinking, it is helping to drive it."

The Dig Com event on May 12, will be hosted by DG Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion of the EU Commission in the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Brussels.

Since 2015, DigComp has become a well-regarded reference framework for establishing a shared understanding of digital competences and supporting development of digital competences in the work place, in education and training, policy-making and more widely.

EntreComp, launched in 2016, is supporting new thinking and understanding of what it means to be entrepreneurial and to have a sense of initiative in today's challenging and ever changing society.

UWTSD’s International Institute for Creative Entrepreneurial Development (IICED), whose Director, Professor Andy Penaluna, has played an integral part in the launch of the EU’s Sense of Initiative and Entrepreneurship Competence (EntreComp) framework.  In particular, Professor Penaluna was instrumental in the newly launched Skills Agenda for Europe which aims to ensure that the right training, skills and support is available to people to help them find quality jobs and improve their life chances.

Following the Welsh review of schooling (Donaldson Review), entrepreneurial styles of learning become a central construct of ‘wider skills’ for all Welsh Schools by 2021 (270K pupils and over 12K teachers). To prepare teachers and teacher managers for this paradigm shift, new qualifications are / have been developed by University of Wales Trinity Saint David utilising EntreComp. These include an Education Doctorate (Ed D); a professional doctoral route aimed at embedding a future-oriented vision of the education professional. Using examples from the EntreComp competencies and advanced level descriptors, the programme sets out what each element of the Ed D programme will achieve.

Professor Penaluna said: "Let’s just think ahead a little. Whilst we cannot fully predict the future, we do know that digital competencies and the ability to do things that machines and automation cannot achieve will be at the heart of the future of work. The next obvious questions are what does that mean to the teacher and educator? What they know today may not be relevant tomorrow – such is the pace of change.

"So what do they teach? Creativity and innovation skills are no longer just for artists; we all have to adapt to a world where new ideas and new solutions will be in constant demand. That is what the skills gap discussions across the Globe are talking about, and this event brings together Europe’s top minds to do just that."

 DigComp will also bring together stakeholders from every sector with an interest in these two key competences and seek to create a community around the frameworks to explore and advance the use of both.

A key feature of the event will be an exhibition session run during part of the day which will allow stakeholders to present information on how they have applied or used the frameworks in their work. The event will also contain a number of interactive sessions and presentations.

The UK launch of Entrecomp – the European Enterprise Competence Framework, took place at a conference at UWTSD on October 12, last year.

Working in collaboration with a number of partners, including Enterprise Educators UK, The National Centre for Entrepreneurship in Education (NCEE), the Higher Education Academy and the Institute of Enterprise and Entrepreneurs (IOEE), the conference explored the relevance and practical implementation of entrepreneurial learning outcomes in all settings, from primary education to employment training.

It featured a special video introduction by Ana Carla Pereira, Head of Unit at European Commission DG Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion and a welcome address by UWTSD’s Professor Mike Phillips, Pro Vice-Chancellor for Research Innovation Enterprise and Commercialisation.

The past 26 months has seen a group of experts working hard on the project to deliver the definitive guidance document for European Citizens and Educators for entrepreneurial education at all levels. 

UWTSD contribution included providing assistance in embedding entrepreneurship education throughout the primary and secondary curriculum in the Republic of Macedonia.  The initiative saw Elin McCallum and Catherine Brentnal of  ‘Are You Ready’ working with UWTSD’s IICED to develop entrepreneurial curriculum and specialist training for 2,500 teachers as well as the development of a handbook “How to teach entrepreneurship”. This initiative is believed to be the first of its kind in the world.

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