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Title: The social democratization of knowledge: some critical reflections on e-learning
Authors: Ahmad Raza
Abdul Rashid Kausar
Paul, David
Keywords: Learning
Knowledge Management
Developing Countries
Issue Date: 2007
Publisher: Multicultural Education & Technology Journal
Citation: Multicultural Education & Technology Journal, 1(1), 64-74, 2007
Abstract: Purpose – This paper aims to make a theoretical critique of the revolutionary sociocultural transformations created by e-learning in the manner knowledge is created, codified, retrieved, managed and transmitted across the boundaries of different cultures. Design/methodology/approach – The structure of these transformations remains European and North American in orientation and very cautious in sharing the benefits of e-learning with the developing societies. The paper contends that this might lead to a parallel academic bureaucracy of e-learning institutions, alongside the traditional Western universities, making it economically hard for people of developing countries to participate in this great and new found experience of learning. The paper proposes a, “democratization of knowledge,” for this new venture of elearning. This rests on the premise, that e-learning, in order to be truly effective, must be multilingual in content and context, culturally divergent, morally relativistic and technologically sharing and integrate non-Western views on knowledge, morality, economics and politics, especially in curriculum designs. Findings – The paper demonstrates that the social democratization of knowledge can lead to the establishment of viable global civil society, helping millions in Asia, Africa and South America to contribute and share the fruits of knowledge explosion in a just, equitable and honorable fashion. Originality/value – The paper shows how e-learning can help the growth and improvement of less developed communities.
Appears in Collections:Department of Management

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