Plenary Lecture

Lifelong Learning: A Dream that Unites the World and the Mission of Universities in Its Implementation

Professor Francklin Rivas-Echeverría
Laboratorio de Sistemas Inteligentes
Universidad de Los Andes
Merida, Venezuela
E-mail: rivas@ula.ve

Abstract: Education is a complex, dynamic and heterogeneous activity that can be evidenced in the multiple processes, phenomena and institutions worldwide that have agreed that "education" is not a simple discrimination between educational events or not, however it is possible to identify spaces for formal, non-formal and informal, where this tripartite covers the universe of educational processes of people.
Despite of the various positions on the differentiation between formal, non-formal and informal education, it can be understood the formal and non-formal as products of intentional and systematic processes. Meanwhile, informal education occurs indiscriminately in the social and cultural contexts in which people are related and occurs diffusely.
This plenary session will discuss this tripartite mixture of education "forms" in the context of Lifelong Learning (LLL) concept, which is defined according to the European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training as: "All learning activity undertaken throughout life, which results in improving knowledge, know-how, skills, competences and/or qualiļ¬cations for personal, social and/or professional reasons".
From this definition, it can be remarked that LLL involves all the individual educational or training processes developed by a person during his life. For the international education community, this notion extends the scope of "formal education", and other social spaces are defined as potentially formative spaces. It is considered the "non-formal education" as the one that includes groups or community organizations and the "informal education" the one that includes all other activities that are not contained in the previous ones and where the individual's active participation is a key issue to the achievement of educational goals that arises.
Universities are participating in continuous education for society, however, there is currently a resizing university task proposing a "third university mission," which is the knowledge transfer and social responsibility, creating cooperative networks between social, economic, political and stakeholders, drawing up plans that provide different options, if possible, tailored to individual or group needs.
Following this vision of the third university mission, the European Community encourages a reflection space approach with Latin America through the project Transatlantic Lifelong Learning: Rebalancing Relations (TRALL). TRALL project is granted by ALFA III program of the European Commission, and 20 Latin American and European academic institutions (15 in Latin America and 5 in Europe) are involved, for the criteria and interests unification, promotion and development related to Lifelong Learning activities.
In addition, in this plenary session it will be presented the TRALL project objectives, phases and prototype models that have been developed under the project methodological framework.

Brief Biography of the Speaker: Francklin Rivas-Echeverria: Systems Engineer, MSc. in Control Engineering and Applied Science Doctor. Full professor in Control Systems Department, at Universidad de Los Andes, Venezuela. He has been invited professor in the Laboratoired'Architecture et d'Analyse des Systemes (LAAS, Toulouse-France) and some Venezuelan and international Universities. He has also been technical advisor for “Venezuelan Oil Company” (PDVSA), “Aluminum VenezuelanCompany” (VENALUM), “Steel Venezuelan Company” (SIDOR), Trolleybus System in Venezuela (TROLMERIDA), HALLIBURTON-USA, among others. He has created and is the Director of the Intelligent Systems Laboratory and is the head of the University consulting unit (UAPIT-ULA).
Over 200 publications in high level conferences and journals: the main topics of his papers are: Artificial Intelligence, Intelligent Control, Automation Systems and Industrial Applications. He has applied AI results to many fields: Processes Control and Supervision, Oil production, Steel production processes, among others. Also, has developed several tools for automatic control teaching. He is coauthor of two books concerning Artificial Intelligence and Nonlinear Systems.
He is the Project Manager of the TRALL Project in Venezuela.
Halliburton awarded him a recognition for “contributions and dedication to the development of petroleum technology.”
Recognition awarded by Magazine “RevistaGerente” as one of the 100 most successful Managers in Venezuela. September 2012.

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