The Digital with Purpose Global Summit 2023 brought together international digital leaders from public and private sectors. The summit, organised by the Global Enabling Sustainability Initiative (GeSI), focused on advancing digital innovations that serve societal well-being, and finally contributing to the UN Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris Agreement.
One pivotal panel discussion, "Child-rights based cooperation between the private sector and schools", moderated by Eszter Salamon, Director of Parents International, underscored the importance of collaborative efforts between education institutions and private enterprises. In this context, Brian O’Neill, DCE Expert Group, introduced the Council of Europe’s Guidelines for Equitable Partnerships between Education Institutions and the Private Sector. The panel was also joined by, and Petra van Haren, Director of ESHA- European School Head Association.
Among the themes addressed:
Ethical Challenges: Panellists acknowledged the complexities of collaboration between public and private sectors. Balancing educational empowerment and safeguarding was identified as a core ethical challenge, requiring careful negotiation of partnerships and regulatory compliance.
Practical Aspects: This segment explored the practical implementation of digital tools in education, considering the evolving regulatory landscapes. The need for relevant solutions adaptable to diverse national frameworks was emphasised.
The Guidelines for Equitable Partnerships play a central role in fostering collaboration and bridge the perspectives of educators and digital innovators.
Innovation in Education: Schools were identified as potential hubs of innovation, provided that the rights of all stakeholders are upheld. Examples were cited of institutions implementing protocols for experimentation in a low-risk environment.
Balancing Protection and Empowerment: The importance of considering the full spectrum of children's rights in the implementation of digital solutions was highlighted, beyond mere protection.
Parental Involvement: Parents were acknowledged as vital stakeholders in the digital education landscape, with the role of Parents International in shaping the Guidelines.
The summit served as a vital platform for dialogue on how digital transformation can be harnessed to advance child rights in education, offering insights and recommendations for policymakers and practitioners alike.
Find more information about the guidelines and the collaboration with the private sector at this page