After reading the first ten pages, this book has inspired me to think so much bigger about the possibilities of learning, how our world has moved on, and how this thing that we call 'education' in western countries must align itself more with the changing technology-driven cultures to adapt to the changing portfolio workplace of the future. A highly recommended book by David Price in user-friendly language which absolutely disrupts the status-quo of education and challenges institutions and individuals to embrace and engage in open learning - to become relevant for the 21st century knowledge economy. This book should be essential reading and discussion material for board members, governing bodies and senior management teams of schools, FE and HE institutions throughout the UK and beyond. Having initially come across David's work through Musical Futures and attended a talk he gave in Cambridge, I have become an advocate and subscriber to his ideology of learning. Buy this book - it will not disappoint but will challenge you to to change and embrace the present and future of life and work!
In a time where many of those involved education in the UK are distracted by the 'my way is better than your way' debates, Open reminds us of the learners that should be at the heart of any education approach but that are too often forgotten. The book exemplifies not just the way people learn when allowed the space, choice and freedom to do so but also places that in the context of what 21st century learners will need in this changing world. This is a must-read for anyone in education or if you have young children about to start their own journey through the exams factory, a system which seems ill equipped to provide for them as learners. If you're a tired teacher or parent, the snappy pace and personal anecdotes help make this book an enjoyable an informative read after a long week at the chalkface and will leave you with plenty to mull over once you have finished!
This is such a great book. As a recruitment and employment specialist, I completely get that worker values are changing and that individuals are demanding more openness, trust and opportunity to learn/grow from their employers; if businesses don't work hard to embrace this, they will lose in the war for talent.
As a parent, I think the UK education is well overdue an overhaul; we need to be showing our children that it's OK not to get things right first time, because this is where true learning takes place. We also need to help our kids fall in love with learning and help them see all the wonderful things that a love of learning can bring right the way through life.
I would heartily recommend this book to any parent with children still within the education system, to all business owners and to any HR professionals looking to make a difference for the employees within their organisation.
I hope David Price continues to write and I look forward to hearing more from him.
This excellent book comes at a very crucial time when education policy in the UK appears to be going backwards. This work points to a progressive and open future, something policy makers not just in the UK but globally, should take heed of.
Although educators everywhere will no doubt take something fresh and inspiring here, the real brilliance of this work is in how it connects to the wider global context.
Taking key historical events and factoring in the technological, socio-political and economic changes, the book highlights how the internet has been a key facilitator in opening up everything and the cultural change it embodies. Drawing on everything from W. B Yeats and perhaps even Marshal McLuhan this work underlines how we are in flux, at a tipping point. Of course there will be struggles as old hierarchies and institutions either fail to adapt or attempt to contain this change. David Price outlines how corporations from Xerox to Google have begun to adopt elements of this model and how individuals are becoming 'prosumers', breaking down dualities to a synthesis of consumer and producer.
Our cultural critics have been talking about this in one way or another for a while now but often not in tandem nor offering a clear path. In a recent piece for The Guardian, Will Self touched on this idea paraphrasing McLuhan on 'the transformation from what he termed "the linear Gutenberg technology" to the "total field"... implied by the instantaneity of electricity... that this was a change in the human mind as well as the human hand.'
In the 1980s Baudrillard anticipating the internet offered much the same when he said, "We no longer partake in the drama of alienation, but are in the ecstasy of communication".
We are in a new and unique position and 'Open' is both a sign and a signifier, one of the key works that will help us forge the way ahead in this new post-internet age.
I am deeply impressed by Open, and having finished it just now, full of inspiration and ideas. I read this at a time when I was not sure about my business, and this presented an experience of a light bulb moment. The only issue I have with this book is its title - in my mind, this is all about the present, how we are already living and working, rather than an idea of the future, which the title may suggest: However, this increases, rather than decrease, the relevance of the book and the urgency why everyone should read it.
This very accessible book is full of deep insights and practicable ideas, presented side by side. This is a book without pretensions, which is the bit I loved, not full of jargon or smart-sounding things like 'software eating the world'. This is an appeal to common sense, backed by stories of real life people and organisations which are doing these things, intertwined with the author's own story.