By approval of UNESCO, UNESCO UNITWIN Network in Distance and Open Learning in East Asia were set up at Shanghai Open University (formerly known as Shanghai TV University) in 1997. For the past 20 years, under the direct leadership of the Chinese National Commission for UNESCO and with its support, Shanghai Open University has uphold the purpose of UNESCO, played an active role in the UNITWIN network, and promoted the dissemination of open learning and lifelong education theory, practice and research. Through the organization of international conferences, publications, and other exchange activities on a regular basis, Shanghai Open University serves as an important communication platform for the dissemination of new concepts and reflection on existing practices in the field of distance education.
With massive education reform and reorganization currently taking place globally, university-based open and distance learning is now facing the challenge of sustainable development, and questions about effective models of leadership during this time of complex internal and external dynamics are beginning to be raised. By hosting this global discussion on effective and innovative leadership in open and distance learning, Shanghai Open University and the UNESCO UNITWIN Network seek to make a significant contribution that will promote the innovation of institutional mechanisms, improve the quality of open and distance education, and support and challenge each other to reflect, research and react regarding educational leadership and innovation needs of the near future .
Conference Theme: Leadership and Innovation for the Future in Open and Distance Learning
Topic areas of parallel sessions are as follows:
Development of institutional and managerial leadership