2012 Advanced Distributed Learning Working Group Meeting: Introducing Learning Solutions for Today’s Mobile World

Editors Note: In order to inform our readers about some of the existing and new technologies that are available for mobile and e-based learning, today we feature a brief report from the ISN’s Training and ADL Competence Center.

From 6-8 November 2012, the Partnership for Peace Consortium’s Advanced Distributed Learning Working Group (ADL WG) staged its annual meeting in Vienna, Austria. The event – hosted by the Austrian National Defence Academy and organized by the International Relations and Security Network (ISN) and Partnership for Peace Consortium (PfPC) – primarily focused on mobile learning opportunities, although it also concentrated on other IT-based learning technologies, methods, tools and future standards. What follows is a brief overview of some of the key issues and developments covered during the meeting.

November 6:  Introducing Tools to Support Mobile Learning

ADL WG meetings traditionally begin by introducing new tools and methods that are ready for immediate use. This year, 35 ADL professionals learnt about the specific challenges of mobile learning and received  hands-on training for a range of tools. They included:

Inequality, Grievances and Civil War Workshop

Looking out across the bay at some of the most expensive land in the world. Photo: Shreyans Bhansali/flickr

The workshop Inequality, Grievances and Civil War took place on the 11th and 12th of November 2011 and was hosted by the Center for Comparative and International Studies (CIS) of the ETH and the University of Zurich. Bringing together some of the leading researchers on group equalities and civil war, the aim of the workshop was to present new research on the role of inequality, geography, mobilization and institutions in explaining conflict onset and termination. Highly anticipated amongst participants, however, was the unveiling of the new GROWup(Geographic Research on War: Unified Platform) data portal.

Friday’s first session addressed ‘Horizontal Inequalities’ and was kicked off by Dr. Frances Stewart of the University of Oxford, presenting her paper “Horizontal inequalities at a global level: the case of Muslims versus the rest”. By placing horizontal inequalities as inequalities in economic and political resources between culturally defined groups, Stewart argued that global horizontal inequalities have similar implications to national ones. Stewart stressed that existing inequalities are a source of insecurity and can raise the risk of conflict globally. Hence, horizontal inequalities, whether they are cultural, political or economic, need to be addressed both on the national and the international level.


Advanced Distributed Learning Working Group Meeting in Georgia

St George's monument in Tbilisi, Georgia. Photo: Reto Schilliger

From 1-3 November 2011, the members of the Partnership for Peace Consortium’s ADL Working Group met for their annual conference, this time in Tbilisi, Georgia. The event, kindly hosted by the Georgian Ministry of Defense and organized in close cooperation with the ISN and the PfP Consortium, focused on the introduction of new and updated open-source tools, discussion of current members’ activities as well as the launch of new ADL projects.

November 1st: Workshops

The meeting started with a full day of workshops providing theoretical background as well as hands-on training on updated and new tools. The ISN Training and ADL Competence Center (TACC) prepared and delivered three workshops on the following topics:


CDT Training in Crete: Close to 50 participants trained on how to produce online courseware

From April 12 to 14 a total of 48 professionals participated in the Cooperative Development Team Training at the NATO Maritime Interdiction Operational Training Center (NMIOTC) in Crete. An intense three-day program provided them with an insight into the theories and processes of producing ADL courses as well as with first-hand practical experience.

Participants from 12 countries. 4th from left: Commodore Adrianos Poulos, commandant of the hosting NMIOTC. Photo: NMIOTC

About ADL and e-learning

Advanced Distributed Learning (ADL) is e-learning based on the SCORM standard. This standard, established and maintained by ADL Labs in the US on the basis of a US DoD initiative, is well established in NATO and also represents the production standard of the PfP Consortium’s ADL Working Group. Advanced Distributed Learning to this standard supports interoperability of content accross compliant NATO and non-NATO platforms as well as flexibility when it comes to combining content for different audiences and learning scenarios.

About the CDT Training

Based on the proven collaboration in establishing ADL capability within NATO and PfPC countries, the event was organized and conducted as a joint project of NATO SACT, US Joint Forces Command, the International Relations and Security Network (ISN) from Switzerland and the US DoD ADL Initiative. The NATO Maritime Interdiction Operational Training Center (NMIOTC), located at Souda Bay near Chania, Crete, hosted the event and provided the infrastructure for lectures and practical sessions.