Research and knowledge management

Centre for Educational Research and Innovation (CERI) - Regional and Innovative Networks


As well as the bigger picture and broad trends, the Schooling for Tomorrow programme is focusing on the "micro" level of innovation taking place in schools and learning networks.

There are two different channels :

  • OECD analysis and country inputs to the main Schooling for Tomorrow conferences on Innovative Schools and Networks
  • The Regional and Innovative "Decentralised" Networks

The first phase of work on innovation under Schooling for Tomorrow began with the Hiroshima seminar in November 1997. This collected together the experience of innovative schools in many countries as presented in the Innovating Schools publication. That publication included analyses of the processes of innovation in education, and policies to support it.

Networks have become an integral part of modern society, including education. They create their own dynamics in teaching and learning management, and open up quite new possibilities for communication. But, networks are still not well understood. This project will gather the experience of genuinely innovative learning networks drawn from different countries and contexts. It will look at how they emerge, are sustained, and the impact they have.

CERI co-operates closely with a number of "decentralised" networks - "decentralised" from the mainstream CERI projects run from Paris. A number of these are geographically or linguistically based. Another, ENSI, is issue-based - the environment and education - and grew out of what was originally a mainstream CERI project. These networks deal with different aspects of schooling, with a strong focus on innovation and exchange.

The German-Speaking Seminars address issues of educational innovations in Austria, Germany and Switzerland and have taken place every two years since 1977. Seminars are organised in cycles of three (one in each of the three countries), and are prepared by country experts who analyse current developments in each of the countries and search for new solutions. The theme of the last cycle, which ended in 1999, was "Learning in a Dynamic and Open Society - The Role of the School". The new cycle (2001 - 2003 - 2005) will deal with "Learning in the Knowledge Society" and the first seminar took place in Esslingen, Germany, early October 2001.

Environment and School Initiatives (ENSI) is a decentralised international network under the umbrella of OECD/CERI. Since its inception in 1986, ENSI has brought together school initiatives, educators and other stakeholders in countries primarily across the OECD area (Europe, Asia-Pacific and North America) to promote and understand activities promoting sustainable development in schools and their communities. ENSI supports educational developments that promote environmental understanding, active approaches to teaching and learning, and citizenship education, through research and the exchange of experiences internationally. ENSI member countries (14 as of May 2001): Australia, Austria, Belgium (Flanders), Denmark, Finland, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom.

  • Eco-School: aims to develop tests and publish methods of teaching and learning which define good practices of environmental education.
  • Learnscapes: aims to promote redesigning of school grounds to permit school communities to interact with their environment and link their curriculum with their use of school grounds.
  • Teacher training: aims to integrate innovative approaches to teacher education programmes through environmental education.
  • International research: aims to conduct comparative studies in such areas as "mainstreaming" which looks into national strategies for a widespread introduction of environment education into the school curricula and teaching and learning.

The Hadeland (Norway) Conference Report: From the Pilot to the mainstream - generalization of good practice in environmental education is now out. For free copies, contact:

  • ENSI Decentralized Secretariat:
  • Ministry of Education & Cultural Affairs
  • Minoritenplatz 5,A-10104 Wien, Austria
  • Tel: 0043 1 531202532
  • Fax: 0043 1 531202599
  • e-mail: Johannes Tschapka
  • ENSI website

PCC is a network of individual researchers and university/college departments of education in the countries that are in the Pacific region. Set up in 1977, it enables co-operative research activities, information exchange, and the development of curriculum materials. Current research themes are Schooling for Tomorrow in Pacific region; Cultural Understanding. Future themes include Identity, Values and Citizenship.

The Pacific Circle Consortium annual conference which included seminar discussion of the PCC Schooling for Tomorrow research study, was held in Hiroshima in October 2000. PCC will continue its work on Tomorrow's schooling and Citizenship, issues on values and identity. The next annual conference will be held in New Zealand in 2002.

The two Spanish speaking OECD Member states, Spain and Mexico, have recently agreed to launch Spanish Speaking Seminars every two years, within CERI's Programme of Work under Objective 2 - Schooling for Tomorrow. These seminars are to address issuesof educational innovations in Spanish speaking countries. Open also to non officially spanish-speaking member countries (Portugal, USA) and to OECD non member countries (Latin America), these semainars will be organised every two years. The seminars, prepared by country experts, will analyse current developments in each of the participating countries, search for new solutions and develop cooperation The first seminar took place in Santander, Cantabria, Spain, September 24-26, 2001 on the topic "The Challenge of ICT in education"

The decisions made as for now are:

  • To organise the second seminar in Mexico (in 2002) and the third in a Latin American country (in 2004). Projects are subject to the renewal of the CERI mandate in the end of 2001.
  • To produce, on the basis of the results of the international round table in Philadelphia ("Digital Divide", in December 1999), two reports (one per country) taking into account the situations of Spain and Mexico, and to serve as a working basis for the seminar in autumn 2000.
  • To invite all Spanish speaking Latin American countries to participate in the seminars; a first contact should be established with Chile and Argentina. The suggestion to invite Portugal, Brazil and the United States also occurred, but so far no definite decision has been made concerning this point.


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