Openness as a Bandaid for Colonialism [...]

People won’t be able to learn medicine (because the dominant knowledge of medicine is in English by Western textbooks and scientists, in expensive imported textbooks) so they copy illegally. It’s against the law. But it’s an unjust law.Then someone gives permission. But the entire discipline and industry have been gatekeeping and withholding for so long. They choose what to share and what to keep. They still control the permission. It seems paternalistic and neocolonial in this sense. Because again it reproduces a cycle of MORE Western knowledge offered to the world (how generous) and in comparison less minority knowledge, because also, minorities have less funding and resources to be open, less time to be open, more to lose and less to gain by being open.If we want to tackle openness from a social justice perspective, we need to always ask whose interests are served by what we do and say. (Source)

Universities and Lifelong Learning [...]

It turns out that, even in an era when people can take courses from anywhere in the world, they will tend to take them from their local institution or not at all. For all the talk of "national universities" and "mega universities," it's not clear that such beasts really exist. For the most part, big universities have proven exceptionally good at soaking up every ounce of demand for education in their local areas. So the next sustainability play is not so much about reaching students far away as it is about serving students you already reach for 40 years rather than for four. (Source)