Connecting the dots. Reflections on the 2022 EPALE Community Conference
The 2022 EPALE Community Conference took place on 18, 19 and 20 October 2022. The conference aimed to highlight the power of imagination and adult learning in shaping an enriching, sustainable, inclusive Europe. Three days full of inspiring speeches, panels, and workshops, counting on 16 online events and more than 20 national side events organised by the EPALE National Support Services.
The speakers involved in the conference invited the European adult learning community to imagine together a peaceful and fair future, despite the hard times we are living in. They highlighted the importance of sharing and connection to build communities: connecting different visions of the past to build a shared memory; connecting different generations, and fostering intergenerational solidarity as a core element of democracy. Complexity was another red thread of the conference: to face the multiple challenges and crises we live in, we need to accept complexity and step out of our comfort zone. As Vanessa de Oliveira Andreotti said in the opening keynote speech: "We need to prepare people for the long call, to face the complexity and not to give up". Anticipating the focus of 2023, the European Year of Skills, many of our speakers insisted that we need to put all our efforts into ensuring that everyone and everywhere is engaged in a lifelong learning journey. As shown by the EPALE community members participating in the EPALE talks, learning can happen in the most unexpected ways, in the most challenging environments - in prisons, in cultural spaces.
The EPALE community responded to our invitation and to the speakers' inspiration with a large and active participation: the conference had 3,000 live views during the plenaries, 150 workshop participants and more than 500 people who attended the national side events.
If you missed the conference, below you can watch again the online streaming, and get inspired for your practice in Adult Learning and Education!
After the opening by European Commission Sophia Eriksson Waterschoot and Manuela Geleng, setting the scene for the conference, you can watch the keynote speech by Vanessa de Oliveira Andreotti, followed by a dialogic exchange on education, community and memory.
Be energised by the opening speech by İlayda Eskitaşçıoğlu, a young activist, scholar and changemaker, and continue with a panel on young adults' participation and citizenship.
If you want to know more about multilingualism, watch the Book talk with Fabrice Jaumont, and then be inspired by some active members of the EPALE community, sharing their practical experiences in motivating learners to take up learning opportunities.
The final keynote speech by Giovanni Emanuele Corazza takes us on a fascinating journey into the creative thinking process, and is followed by an EPALE talk discussing how theatre can become a bridge between cultures to enhance social inclusion.