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About the keynotes


On this page you will find information about the keynote speakers of the 2017 conference.


Vivien Hodgson ( slides | video )

Lancaster University

Vivien Hodgson is Professor of Networked Management Learning at Lancaster University Management School, UK and guest Obel Chair at e-Learning Lab, University of Aalborg, Denmark.  She is the co-editor of the Springer book series on Researching Networked Learning and was one of the founding co-chairs of the international bi-annual conference series ‘Networked Learning’. She is currently leading an across faculty initiative supporting and encouraging staff to develop innovative pedagogical designs and online spaces that adopt and use digital learning resources and activities across a range of Management School programmes at UG and PG level.

Her research interests include research on students' experiences of learning and exploring the various initiatives taking place in management education and more widely with respect to more ‘open’ and collaborative critical pedagogical approaches supported by digital media and tools. Further information on Vivien can be found at:


At the 2017 Networked learning conference, Vivien will introduce the following topic for further discussion: 'Networked learning in management and professional development'-


Maarten de LaaT ( slides | video )

University of Wollongong/Open University of the Netherlands

Professor dr Maarten de Laat is director of the Learning, Teaching & Curriculum division at the University of Wollongong.  His expertise concentrates on social learning strategies, networked learning relationships and technologies to facilitate teaching, learning and innovation in agile learning environments. 

Maarten’s research addresses networks and social capital development, with a specific interest in informal learning, professional development and knowledge creation through (online) social networks and communities and the impact technology, learning analytics and social design has on the way these networks and communities work, learn and innovate. He has published and presented his research on networked learning, professional development and learning analytics extensively in international research journals, books and conferences. He has given several invited keynotes at international conferences. He has been appointed a visiting professor at the University of South Australia in Adelaide. Finally Maarten is co-chair of the international Networked Learning Conference (NLC).

At the 2017 Networked learning conference, Maarten will introduce the following topic for further discussion: 'Practice-based research and Value Creation in Professional development Networks.'


Allison Littlejohn ( slides | video )

Open University UK

Allison Littlejohn is Professor of Learning Technology and Academic Director for Digital Innovation at The Open University, UK. Her research spans Professional and Digital Learning, questioning how people learn for work and how they change their practice. Of particular interest are disruptive pressures that demand new ways of working. She has held Professorships at three UK Universities and academic or related positions in the UK and US. Professor Littlejohn’s research has been published in over 200 academic articles, including four books. Current projects are funded by Shell and the Energy Institute (Learning From Incidents) and the Economic and Social Research Council (Migration for Inclusive African Growth).

She has been Principal Investigator or Senior Scientist on around 50 research projects funded by the European Commission (EC), the UK Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE), the Scottish Funding Council (SFC), the UK Joint Information Systems Committees (JISC), the UK Higher Education Academy (HEA), the Energy Institute (EI), Shell International & British Petroleum (BP).  Her industry-academic research is with multinational companies, most notably Royal Dutch Shell, for whom she was Senior Researcher 2008-2010. Allison is a Fellow and former Scholar of the Higher Education Academy and has received international fellowships from ASCILITE (Australasia), and the Churchill Trust (UK).  


At the 2017 Networked learning conference, Allison will introduce the following topic for further discussion: 'Informal professional learning: how professionals learn in networked environments including MOOCs'