Learning and Work Institute worked with the Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce (RSA) and the City and Guilds Group to evaluate the impact of the Cities of Learning programme – a new model for Cities and places to design and deliver inclusive lifelong learning which is tailored to the needs of local people and economies.
Cities of learning is an inclusive approach that promotes and recognises learning wherever it happens. It creates new pathways into learning and employment by connecting formal, informal, and in-work learning opportunities that exist across a place thorough a system of digital Open Badges. Individuals have access to an online platform which makes opportunities visible and allows them to develop personalised progression routes into new opportunities, as well as showcase their achievements.
The Cities of Learning approach is tailored to the needs and priorities of each city or place, and built in partnership with local learning providers, employers and civic leaders.
From 2019 to 2020, L&W evaluated the impact of Cities of Learning trials being carried out in Brighton and Plymouth. The evaluation demonstrated a positive difference to:
Learners: Cities of learning allows a ‘digital CV’ to be built around specific interests and achievements, which is portable across the web, enabling learners to demonstrate skills not necessarily recognised through the formal education system such as resilience and confidence.
Learning providers: The Cities of Learning approach enables them to broaden their reach, engagement and impact and to connect learners into further opportunities.
Employers: Cities of Learning helps address skills challenges and develop talent pipelines into key local employment sectors.
Cities: The approach helps to improve civic participation and sense of belonging, heritage and identity through learning. In addition, data captured through the platform will provide city leadership with insights about learning and skills engagement, and progression.
Please get in touch with Fiona Aldridge if you would like to find out more about the project.