How to turn challenges into opportunities for education transformation? – WS 10 2020

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12 June 2020 | 14:30-16:00 | Studio Trieste
Consolidated programme 2020 overview / Day 2

Proposals: #17, #26, #62, #81, #97, #101, #103, #121, #131, #137, #138, #153, #180 (#9, #15, #37, #78, #157, #171)

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Session information

Date: Wednesday, 12 June 2020

Time: 14:30 - 16:00 CEST (UTC+2)

Session teaser

The global spread of coronavirus has created a fruitful ground for cyber-criminals to profit from hacking and cybercrime, and attacks are likely to rise. Therefore, proper Cyberdefense skills need to be taught at various levels from elementary to high school, within formal and informal educational settings, to equip people from possible attacks. Discussing the importance of Cybersecurity, Internet architecture and coding skills is becoming compelling too – from high schools to university level and above – to help people design and co-design technologies.

What are the existing educational programs that are helping people become more prepared and equipped in time of global crisis: to protect individuals and their devices from cybercrime, manage privacy and protect personal data, create and co-create digital content by producing, designing, writing, and publishing it. Which policies are designed to improve information literacy skills: to be able to recognize fake news, deal with misinformation, manage and value privacy and other rights (such as freedom of expression)?

Session description

The COVID-19 pandemic has necessitated of moving teaching and learning online at an unprecedented scale. As of end April, 2020 the global health crisis had caused more than 1.6 billion children and youth (80 percent of the world's enrolled students) to be out of school in 191 countries, as well as 63 million primary and secondary teachers.

As experts estimate, the global lockdown of education institutions is going to cause major and uneven interruption in students’ learning. UNESCO has publicized data demonstrating a negative impact the school closures are having on students’ learning outcomes. Though the use of distance learning programmes and open educational resources and platforms can mitigate the disruption of education, yet intensify other problems. The global health crisis has created a fruitful ground for cyber-criminals to profit from hacking and cybercrime, and attacks are on the rise.

To fight the spread of the COVID19 and protect human health and life, governments around the world are using tracking and surveillance applications, in some countries unverified information flows are banned, thus restricting fundamental freedoms, such as freedom of expression, right to privacy, right to access information, etc.

Questions to be proposed to key participants:

  • What are the existing educational strategies and policies that are helping people become more prepared and equipped in times of global crisis: to protect individuals and their devices from cybercrime, learn to manage privacy and protect personal data, create and co-create digital content.
  • How do we ensure necessary cyber-defense, cyber security and other technical skill sets (such as internet architecture, or technical skills helping to build more secure websites, safer software, IoT security by design, etc.) are taught from school to university level?
  • Which policies are designed to improve information literacy skills: to be able to recognize fake news, deal with misinformation, manage and value privacy and other rights (such as freedom of expression)?
  • What responsibilities should assume state, business and civil society actors to promote that quality education during and after the global health crisis?

Further reading

by Anelia Dimova

EuroDIG 2017 WS6: From Internet Users to Digital Citizens [1]

European SchoolNet's Interactive Map of 'COVID19' Activities in Transition Period [2]

Factsheets: a Europe fit for the Digital Age [3]

National Cyber Security Education Agenda of DCypher, the Dutch government's initiative [4] [5]

Global Education Coalition. COVID-19 Education Response [6]

COVID-19 crisis. Broadband Commission Agenda for Action for Faster and Better Recovery [7]

COMPACT, Horizon 2020. Research Findings and Policy Recommendations for organisations and initiatives tackling fake news [8]

Shaping Europe's Digital Future. Communication from The Commission to The European Parliament, The Council, The European Economic and Social Committee and The Committee of The Regions [9]

Digital technologies – innovative solutions during the coronavirus crisis [10]

Next Generation Internet: Human-Centric Tech in times of crisis [11]

Digital Skills Assessment Guidebook [12] [13]

Shaping Europe's Digital Future. Digital Education Action Plan [14]


Focal Points

  • Rui André S. Esteves
    Biography: Experienced ICT Teacher, with a substantial working history in various scholar institutions, teaching at different levels. Presently, teaching in a public secondary school in Madeira Island - Portugal. Before, worked as IT Administrator, in several public entities/organizations. Experienced in ITIL, IT Service Management, TCP/IP Networks and Operative Systems. Holds a first degree in Computer/ Information Administration and Management, and a Masters Degree in ITIL Framework, from Bragança's Polytechnic Institute – Portugal. Member of Internet Society Portuguese Chapter.


  • Narine Khachatryan
    Biography: Narine Khachatryan has over a decade of experience in project development and coordination in the field of ICTs with extensive experience of working with stakeholders from government, industry, civil society and international organizations. Ms. Khachatryan has been a coordinator of Safer Internet Armenia -, raising public awareness and educating about Internet safety and risks, which over the last decade has given start to numerous educational initiatives in the fields of ICTs involving many thousands young people and adults. Ms. Khachatryan acted as national contact for such organizations as INSAFE / Better Internet for Kids and STOP. THINK. CONNECT.™ the Global Online Safety Awareness Campaign. As a co-founder of programs promoting media and digital literacies, she engaged as a researcher with a number of international partners, such as the U.S. University of St. Thomas, and others. See [15]

Key Participants

  • Joanna Kulesza
    Biography: Joanna Kulesza is a tenured professor of law and teaches international law, internet governance and media law. Currently serving as a scientific committee member for the Fundamental Rights Agency of the European Union and for the At-Large Advisory Committee of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, she successfully combines academia with policy work. Most recently she was elected as the Chair of the ADvisory Board of the Global Forum on Cyber Expertise. She is an expert of the Sino-European working group on international law and its application to cyberspace, set up by the CICIR and GCSP. She has also been involved with the Sino-European Cybersecurity Dialogue (SECD) and the Global Commission on the Stability of Cyberspace (GCSC). Professor Kulesza has been serving an expert on human rights online for the Council of Europe and European Commission. She has been a visiting professor with the Oxford Internet Institute, Oslo University, Justus-Liebig-Universität Gießen, and Westfälische Wilhelms Universität Münster. Kulesza was also a visiting researcher with the University of Cambridge and Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München.
  • Tito de Morais
    Biography: The Internet Safety Guy, is the founder of Projecto MiudosSegurosNa.Net (KidsSafeOnThe.Net Project), a family-run initiative that, since 2003, helps Portuguese speaking families, schools and communities promoting the ethical, responsible and safe use of the Internet by children, adults and lately, senior citizens. Tito is on the Advisory Board of Portugal’s Safer Internet Center, on Board of International Advisors of Cybersafety India, on the Advisory Board of the Portuguese team of the EuKidsOnline project, collaborated with NetChildrenGoMobile’s Portuguese team and was an external evaluator of “Cyber Training – Taking Action Against Cyberbullying”, a project that produced a train-the-trainer manual on cyberbullying. Represents StopCyberbullying and in Portugal and Projeto MiudosSegurosNa.Net as Partner at Google’s Family Safety Center and Facebook’s Safety Center. Tito is a member of the International Bullying Prevention Association and the Cybersafety Standards Task Force.
  • Oliana Sula
    Biography: Oliana Sula is a lecturer and researcher at the Departement of Management, Faculty of Business at the University “Aleksandër Moisiu” Durrës, in Durrës, Albania. She holds a PhD in Management from Estonian Business School in Tallinn, Estonia. Her previous educational background is from France and Argentina. Her research interests are social media, youth entrepreneurship, social innovation, digital literacy, digital inclusion, cybersecurity education, youth policies, youth entrepreneurial culture and sustainable focusing in South East Europe and Latin America. She is part of different initiatives about Internet Governance at regional and European level. Her hobbies are nature, travelling, literature, spirituality, fitness and fashion design.
  • Janice Richardson
    Biography: Janice Richardson has been conducting research on digital literacy, children’s rights and their online wellbeing for several decades, and has extensively advised governments, industry and international institutions on digital education across the world. She is author/co-author of a dozen books, and founding member/coordinator of several networks on literacy-related topics including the European Commission’s 30-country Safer Internet network (Insafe) and ENABLE, a network to tackle bullying through social-emotional competency development. Achievements include the creation of Safer Internet Day (celebrated since 2004, now in more than 140 countries), winner of a Facebook Digital Citizenship Grant (2012) and a European Diversity Award (2013) for outstanding use of digital technology in education. She has been expert to the Council of Europe on various topics including digital citizenship and child protection since 2002, co-authoring a half dozen CoE publications. Janice sits on Facebook’s Safety Advisory Board and Youth Advisory Board, Twitter’s Trust and Security Council, and the Power of Zero steering committee on early childhood education, and is content creator/education expert in Huawei’s ongoing SmartBus programme. Since 2017 she has been working with youth and teacher-mentors from 10 EU countries (the European Council for Digital Good) to create digital citizenship games and publications for children, an especially important area of work to support teachers and parents during the coronavirus lockdown.


Organising Team (Org Team)

Remote Moderator



The workshop will discuss a global issue, which should be approached in different ways by different stakeholders. Speakers or key participants should represent different  sectors: government, academia, technical community and civil society and come from different parts of Europe.  Small islands, or those who otherwise would never be able to participate in EuroDIG, should be given preference. Diversity should be at the core of our workshop and achieved through different possible ways: sector, country, gender and the point of view. 

Nowadays, when technologies are taking the space of human beings, impartiality of our discussions becomes far more important:  we should try to avoid bias, prejudice,  preferring to benefit one party to another. The workshop will feature key participants, who will share their insights on the topic. Following the introductory part, the moderators will facilitate an interactive discussion with the audience about roles and responsibilities of various actors: state, business and civil society to promote quality education during and after the global education and health crisis. 

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