EU policies are focussing on strengthening of Europe’s innovative
capacity and the modernisation of Education and Training systems.
Technologies for learning could make an important contribution to
this endeavour as they are considered to be enablers of educational
innovation and change.
The study “Mapping and analysing prospective technologies
for learning (MATEL)” was launched by the Information Society
Unit at JRC-IPTS and was carried out by the MENON network from
January 2012 to January 2013. MATEL contributes to the objectives
of the Europe 2020 strategy, in particular the Agenda for New Skills
and Jobs, Youth on the Move, the Innovation Union Agenda and the
Digital Agenda.
The MATEL study brings evidence to the debate on technologies
that are expected to play a decisive role in shaping future learning
strategies in the short to the medium term (5-10 years from now) in
three main learning domains:
• Formal education and training (i.e. primary, secondary and
higher education; vocational education and training);
• Work-place and work-related learning (i.e. professional
development strategies that are integrated into and/or
directly relevant to a specific job or career path);
• Re-skilling and up-skilling strategies in the lifelong-learning
continuum (e.g. re-qualification schemes; strategies for
regaining employment; career development strategies an
individual undertakes voluntarily to change her/his job or
professional profile etc.).
The final report on the MATEL study, to be published online by JRCIPTS
in July 2013, highlights the main messages gathered from the
three main phases of the study: an Online Consultation, a State of
the Art Analysis and a Roadmapping Workshop.
Through the extensive Online Consultation, which followed a
bottom-up, multi-stakeholder approach, eight technology clusters
and a set of related key technologies that could enable learning
innovation and educational change were identified, as depicted in
the Matel Cluster Map graphic on this page.
Eight of the abovementioned key technologies were analysed in
depth in the State of the Art Analysis to highlight their current and
potential use in education, the relevant market trends and their
on-going policy initiatives.
Based on the previous phases and on a following Roadmapping
Workshop attended by external experts, three roadmaps, one per
learning domain – Primary and Secondary Education, Workplace and
work-related learning, RE-skilling and Up-skilling strategies – were
developed. The long term goals and specific objectives for
educational change and also the specific technologies that support
these changes are then discussed, leading to the immediate
strategies and actions to be undertaken by policy and decision
makers (see table below).



In conclusion, the first key policy message that the MATEL study
brings to the policy making and research community is
the need to
always consider the introduction and implementation of
technologies in learning in relation to the dynamics, evolution and
needs of learning systems. Learning takes place in a complex
ecosystem where one must be aware of technology trends but not
be “technology driven”.

The second key policy message that MATEL delivers is that the
world of technologies is also a complex ecosystem with strong
interdependencies, which must be taken into account to ensure the
effectiveness of technology implementation in learning.

The third and final key message of MATEL relates to the fact that
most of the key MATEL technologies were not developed, in the first
instance, with learning in mind. Therefore, attention should be
focused on filling the gap in professional profiles able to ensure a
meaningful use of technologies in learning. For example, designers
are needed who are able to adapt technologies to learning
purposes; anticipate the needs of practitioners; understand and
face their concerns.

Contact: Panagiotis Kampylis, Yves Punie