IGNOU VC calls for harnessing technology for rural development

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Manipal, Nov 17 (UNI) Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU) Vice Chancellor and Chairman of Distance Education Council Prof V N Rajashekarn Pillai today called for harnessing technology for rural development and enhance the skills and making the rural youth employable.

Delivering his convocation address at the Manipal University Convocation here, he said that active partnership among industry, society, government and higher education institutions would enable the planning of strategies to meet the requirements of respective societies. "Attention needed to be given to the nature and variety of mediations in such partnership," he added.

He said that the impact of technological changes on humanities, social sciences and on knowledge needed to be explored critically.

"We need to address several issues in this context. The pace and extent to which new technologies were being transferred and the barriers to such transfer of technology have to be understood.

Contribution of tertiary education sector to economic and social development in developing countries would happen in the right perspective only if we understood this," he added.

The Professor noted that one of the important changes had been the growing informatisation of the society. The higher education sector had witnessed the increasingly important role of digitization and convergence, both within media, communications and information sector. Higher education would continue to feel the need of the new technologies and their use would increase significantly in the years to come.

Prof Pillai exhorted that new technologies, due to globalisation were altering many aspects of our society and culture and we need to comprehend and make use of them both to understand and transform our world. Introducing new literacies to empower individuals and groups traditionally excluded would require a reconstruction of education to make it more responsive to the challenges of a democratic and multicultural society. In this context, it becomes necessary to be critically aware of the gap between technological advancements and pedagological utilization or adoptions of them, he added.

UNI

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