Refugee learning ecosystems: reimagining higher education access for refugees

The aim of this report is to explore and share how an approach based on the concept of Learning Ecosystems might be taken forward in the context of HEiE. Learning Ecosystems are “open and evolving communities of diverse providers that cater to the variety of learner needs in a given context or area”. They offer a learner-driven model to leverage a range of formal and informal learning spaces, diversify learning pathways, and activate new resources for learning. Through practical and participatory research in Lebanon and Jordan, together with practitioners and refugee youth, Mosaik Education has mapped some existing refugee Learning Ecosystems; identified the types of actors, relationships and behaviours which support young refugees to access higher education; and identified some key principles for strengthening these systems. This research explores examples of refugee Learning Ecosystems, to understand what enables them to develop, and how they contribute to refugee learning. From this, we extract some foundational principles for a Learning Ecosystems approach, which can leverage and replicate the dynamism of these examples, to complement and add to existing strategies and programmes. We hope that these findings, concepts and principles will be of use to the full range of actors in the HEiE ecosystem, to strengthen opportunities for refugee youth, support innovations in strategy and programme design, and help meet the UNHCR target.


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