Adult Education in Global Times:
An International Research Conference (AEGT2020)

ABOUT: Vancouver, Campus, Accommodation, Dining and Amenities

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Éducation des adultes dans les temps globaux:
Une conférence sur la recherche internationale

Du 4 au 7 juin 2020 

  • Pré-conférence: le 4 juin
  • Conférence: le 5 au 7 juin


Pre-conferences (June 4th, 2020)

Full-day Pre-conferences

This pre-conference will explore a broad range of topics that relate to sexual and gender diversity in adult and community education. We are keen to share scholarship related to sexual and gender diversity among a warm, engaged community of lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, genderqueer, two-spirit or queer adult educators, learners, or leaders. We are also interested in the role of the straight or cisgender ally in queer adult education; queer pedagogy and curriculum; and queer or transnational sexuality perspectives on adult education. Researchers and practitioners are most welcome! A New Directions monograph will be proposed based on selected papers presented at this fabulous pre-conference. For more information or for a copy of the Call for Papers, please contact one of the pre-conference organizers.


John Egan, Director—Learning and Teaching

Medical and Health Sciences

University of Auckland



Robert Mizzi, Associate Professor

University of Manitoba



Adult and Continuing Education in the Changing Global Context: Exchanges between the East and the Rest

The 12th Asian Diaspora Pre-conference in Conjunction with AEGT 2020

Deadline: Jan 20, 2020

The University of British Columbia, Canada, June 4, 2020

The 12th Asian Diaspora Pre-conference, in conjunction with Adult Education in Global Time Conference (AEGT), will be held at the University of British Columbia, Canada, June 4, 2020. The theme for this year’s Asian preconference is: Adult and Continuing Education in the Changing Global Context: Scholarship Exchanges between the East and the Rest. The purpose of this pre-conference is to provide an opportunity for scholars from both Asian ancestry (East) and the Rest of the world through active exchanges to enhance mutual learning, to discuss academic perspectives, and to dialogue for fuller understandings from each other.

In the global context, knowledge production becomes an active and applicable process that involves interconnections, collaboration, and engagement with the world. Reviewing theories, models, and practices of adult education and continuing learning from different cultural traditions and diverse social systems enables us to seek broader perspectives, richer theories, and alternative approaches, to make meanings in specific contexts and from relevant paradigms for theory expansion and effective practices.

Since 2003, in conjunction with the Adult Education Research Conference (AERC), this Asian Diaspora pre-conference has developed into an active learning community that has not only offered this forum for faculty, scholars, and graduate students from multiple countries and cultures to present their scholarship and research studies, but also developed academic connections supporting research activity and academic life among scholars and graduate students from different parts of the world. The 12th Asian preconference continuously serves as an important vehicle for such meaningful exchanges between the East and the Rest.

Proposals on adult learning/education, continuing education, lifelong learning/education, cross- cultural teaching, learning, and training/work place learning from various conceptual perspectives and practical approaches, and other topics deemed appropriately relevant to our themes are welcome to submit.


Proposal Submission Instructions Paper (500 words excluding references)

We invite faculty, researchers, and graduate students to submit proposals from your original research relevant to our preconference theme. Please include the followings in your paper proposal:

  • Proposal title, author(s)’ name, position, affiliation, and contact information on the cover page
  • Proposal title & keywords (3-5 words)
  • Purpose of Study
  • Perspectives and/or Conceptual Framework, Position/Opinions supported by literature
  • Methodology
  • Findings (if available), and
  • Significance/Conclusion/Implications


Panel Discussions (300 words)

We invite faculty, researchers, and graduate students to submit their proposals for panel discussion to share their research, reflections, observations, and experiences on and relevant to the theme. Please include the following information:

  • Proposal title, author(s)’ name, position, affiliation, and contact information on the cover page
  • The title of your panel discussion
  • Abstract (300 words)


Electronic/Video/Visual Aid Project Showcase (practice-oriented) (100 - 200 words)

We invite faculty, researchers, and students to submit electronical showcase proposals. You are highly encouraged to take a video clip of the physical sites of the learning activity or program that you propose to share, which helps provide the international audience with an authentic local context and cultural variations.

In your submission, please include the following information:

  • Proposal title, author(s)’ name, position, affiliation, and contact information on the cover page
  • The title of your Electronic Showcase Project
  • Abstract (200 words): in your abstract, briefly provide the following information:
    • a description of the activity, program, or practical approaches/strategies that you plan to share with our audience
    • reasons why you want us to know this activity/program/approach
    • how this activity/program is designed, delivered, and or functioned
    • what we can learn from this activity/program/approaches. Please be
    • how you will organize this showcase, for example: using video, or visual format with audio introduction, or other multi-media

Submit your proposal (cover page and content page) to for the 12th Asian Preconference. Proposal review uses a blind review process. All proposals must be received electronically by Jan 20, 2020. Notification of decision will be sent on or before February 16, 2020. Accepted proposal author(s) will be provided information and instructions on presentation.

For those whose proposals are accepted but for personal reasons may not be able to physically attend the conference, there will be an option for distance presentation.

Contact if you have questions for submission.

Contact Qi Sun at: if you have questions regarding the preconference.


Asian Pre-conference Steering Committee:

Chair, Steering Committee:                            Qi Sun, University of Tennessee, Knoxville

Chair, Review Committee:                              Haijun Kang, Kansas State University

Chair, Program Committee:                            Bo Chang, Ball State University


Outreach and Marketing Coordinator:         Xi Lin, East Carolina

University Technology Specialist:                  Xi Lin, East Carolina University

Treasure/Secretary:                                          Xiaoqiao Zhang, Penn State University

Social Media Specialist:                                   Xiaoqiao Zhang, Penn State University

Event Planner:                                                   Xiaoqiao Zhang, Penn State University


The African Diaspora Pre-conference was established in 1993 to recognize the cultural significance of research and scholarship centered on the diaspora community and produced by those adult educators of African descent. The pre-conference provides a forum for masters and doctoral students of African descent/ancestry to present their research and discuss their work with other scholars. The pre-conference serves as a place for young scholars to gain insight, knowledge and experience about the field, research and writing. We encourage you to join us as our voices are critical to the field of Adult Education. Please contact the organizer to ensure you receive the Call for Proposals as soon as it is available.


Doris A. Flowers, Professor

San Francisco State University


Recent media has reported an increased number of incidents of bullying, incivility, and violence in physical and cyber environments nationally in the United States, internationally and globally. Such malicious behaviors negatively influence everyone involved physically and psychologically. Educational sectors such as adult, higher, continuing, and professional education have also experienced, witnessed, and dealt with violent actions and behaviors. Those sectors often reflect the struggles of the communities they are embedded in and society at large. Because one of the contemporary goals of adult education is to strive for social justice and equality for all, actively having critical dialogues about bullying, incivility, and violence becomes an important aspect of practice. Therefore, the purpose of this pre-conference is to provide an opportunity for educators, practitioners, and researchers to have critical dialogues about empirical, theoretical, and practical issues of bullying, incivility, and violence in adult, higher, continuing, and professional education. This pre-conference specifically focuses on the following theme: Researching and Practicing Social Justice Scholarship on Bullying, Incivility, and Violence in Adult, Higher, Continuing, and Professional Education.


Mitsunori Misawa, Associate Professor & Associate Department Head

University of Tennessee-Knoxville


It is claimed that a “new mobilities” paradigm is being formed within the social sciences to transcend disciplinary boundaries. As a powerful discourse that creates its own effects and contexts, the emerging mobility paradigm challenges the “a-mobility” of much research in the social sciences. Under the new mobilities paradigm, migration is conceptualized as circulatory and transnational, moving us beyond the framework of methodological nationalism. Transnational mobility has called into question dominant notions of migrant acculturation or assimilation. Migrants no longer feel obligated to remain tied to or locatable in a “given”, unitary culture. Rather, they are becoming embedded within a shifting field of increasingly transcultural identities. Yet, at the same time not all migrants, especially refugees or asylum seekers, are able or willing to sustain such transnational linkages as many of them continue to live in a state of limbo, being caught between their wish to return, unfavourable circumstances in their home country, and the difficulty of starting a new life in their country of residence. In the case of refugees and asylum seekers, mobility is usually imposed or restricted. Thus, transnational mobility can be complex and have differing impacts on the hopes, desires, aspirations and citizenship possibilities of different populations.

In this pre-conference we aim to extend the scope and meaning of transnational mobility especially as it pertains to divergent communities such as that of migrants and refugees and asylum seekers. In doing so our intention is to displace the concept of transnational mobilities from the settled frameworks of both sedantarism as well as postmodernist hypermobility. Topics of interest include:


  • Global perspectives and analyses of migration and refugee studies
  • The impact of migration and refugee resettlement on adult education and society
  • Processes of exclusion and inclusion in adult education
  • The tensions between mobility, knowledge, and recognition
  • Intersections of race, class, gender, and adult education
  • Transnationalism, diaspora, and identity


If you are conducting research or have completed studies in this area, we invite you to submit a proposal. All proposals will undergo a blind review process. If your proposal is accepted for presentation, you are expected to submit a formally written six-page paper for inclusion in the pre-conference proceedings. More information will follow. For questions and inquiries, contact



Shibao Guo, Professor

University of Calgary



Srabani Maitra, Lecturer

University of Glasgow


In this full day pre-conference will be open to all AEGT2020 participants (must sign up as lunch will be provided) to discuss and share their creative, arts-based and aesthetic practices in university, community, and/or arts and cultural institutions. Through small and large group discussions and an ArtActivistBarbie Flashmob activity, we will explore how our work contributes to struggles to decolonise and bring about gender justice and change.



Darlene Clover, Professor

University of Victoria


Morning-only Pre-conferences

The UBC Learning Exchange is a community engagement initiative in the Downtown Eastside (DTES) of Vancouver. The Learning Exchange will be hosting an interactive morning of presentations and activities highlighting the different forms of community-based adult education expressed through their work and that of their DTES partner organizations. We will explore the innovative ways in which research into adult learning is being practiced in this inner city community; how arts-based programming enhances language learning; the role of Indigenous programming in reconciliation; and the impact of tech cafes on digital literacy. The formal program will end by noon for those participants who wish to return to the UBC campus to attend one of the afternoon pre-conferences. Alternatively, enjoy lunch in Chinatown and take one of our self-guided neighbourhood walks.



Spring Gillard, Coordinator, English Conversation Program

UBC Learning Exchange


Parker Palmer (1999) asks that we listen to the small voice within; mindfulness practice gets us to pay attention to the sensations that arise in our body. As educators and students we know that the extra-rational is an essential part of learning. And, many of us are starting to embrace artistic, creative, and affective pedagogies that can help facilitate the most profound and transformative of experiences. Yet, how do we listen to our inner voice or bring our bodies into the classroom as adult learners and teachers? What do we do with the discomfort that arises in teaching difficult issues, in wanting to foster a dialogue of difference, especially in contexts of social justice and truth and reconciliation conversations? How do we better stay true to our values in speaking our truths without engaging defensively and reactively?

In this three-hour experiential workshop, we draw on the wisdom of body-learning and teaching from both Western and Eastern practices and on e-theories of mind, in harnessing learning as embodied, enactive, engaged, embedded, extended and ecological (Hutto & Myin, 2017). In iterative praxical form, we lead people through a series of activities to help them better listen to and work with their bodies, connecting back to various theories of adult learning.

Shayna Hornstein is a trained somatic psychotherapist and physiotherapist with over 20 years of experience running workplace professional development training and offering one-to-one counselling. Jude Walker is Assistant Professor of Adult Learning and Education at UBC with an interest in transformative learning theories and pedagogies.


Shayna Hornstein, Resilience Training & Counselling


Jude Walker, University of British Columbia




Afternoon-only Pre-conferences

Across the world, the hegemony of “neoliberal globalisation” is challenged by “populism.” From Austria and Bulgaria to India and Italy, from “Brexit” to “Trumpism,” forms of populism have taken hold. Most are strongly nationalistic. Many are also influenced by other kinds of “identity politics”: by ethnicity, religion, region, class, language, gender. Often, identity is expressed less in loyalty than in anger against supposed threats: from immigrants, from groups – women, ethnic minorities, and so forth – previously subordinated but now claiming equal status. Populist politicians and parties often claim to act for – and to be supported by – those excluded from the benefits of neoliberalism: the unemployed, communities and cities “left behind.”


Populisms are, of course, frequently associated with authoritarianism, scepticism about democratic institutions and methods, and the elevation of “leadership” and the charismatic leader. Often, or so many claim, they are strengthened by modern social media’s “confirmation bias” – not to mention the forms of interaction it facilitates, from cyberbullying to surveillance.


This workshop will explore how resurgent forms of populism are affecting adult education. What are the differences between countries and types of populism, and do they have different implications for adult education? Are there lessons to be drawn from experience in other countries, or other times – populism has a long, complex, sometimes colourful, often cruel, history. Have national or international policies – including policies toward adult education – played any part in the resurgence of populism? What approaches have adult educators evolved to survive amid populism – and challenge it?


This half-day pre-conference will consider the state of comparative adult education research relating to the global – yet anti-global – phenomenon of “populism”.



John Holford, President

International Society for Comparative Adult Education (ISCAE)

University of Nottingham


Canada—among other countries—has been gradually coming to terms with its colonization and forced displacement of Indigenous peoples largely accomplished through institutionally-condoned violence and oppression. Educational institutions have only recently taken steps to recognize their complicity and their responsibility to transform their policies and practices to advance Indigenous community priorities and fully support Indigenous learners and communities. The purpose of this pre-conference is to give consideration to institutional responses that are being shaped by policy developments, including the United Nations Declaration of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP), Canada’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Calls-to-Action (TRC), Universities Canada’s Reconciliation Principles, and the Association of Canadian Deans of Education Indigenous Education Accord.

The teaching of “Hands Back – Hands Forward” shared with UBC by the late Musqueam Elder, Dr. Vincent Stogan, provides a framework for the pre-conference. This teaching acknowledges reaching back to the ancient and dynamic knowledges of Indigenous peoples with the responsibility to carry this wisdom forward to future generations. The afternoon pre-conference will involve a walking tour of the UBC campus to learn about the ways institutions materially, spatially, symbolically, and ideologically construct, erase, or appropriate Indigenous knowledges, histories, and presence and how themes of reconciliation, resurgence, and reclamation are laying new roots in post-secondary spaces. A panel presentation will follow illustrating how institutions are authorizing and investing in Indigenous education priorities in ways that empower Indigenous adult learners attending to questions of:

  • How Indigenous perspectives and worldviews can be made visible in our institutions and gain a place of respect alongside non-Indigenous views;
  • How educational institutions contribute to projects of decolonization, reconciliation, and self-determination; and
  • What structures are necessary within institutions and communities to ensure Indigenous learners achieve their full potential.

Please join us for these important conversations about the past and the future designed to raise critical questions and point to hopeful strategies leading to a more inclusive, socially-just future.



Jan Hare, Professor and Associate Dean, Indigenous Education

University of British Columbia


The world of work is experiencing ever-accelerating changes given the swift developments in science and technology, and the unprecedented scale of globalization, international­ization, and immigration. These changes are so drastic that some have claimed that we have entered a VUCA time, or a time of volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity. In this context, individuals find it imperative to engage in continuous learning to stay afloat in a contingent job market. Professional organizations make considerable efforts to define and develop various competency matrixes in response to the shifting demands of employers. Educational institutions are working to innovate programs that prepare students – both traditional and non-traditional – for an unknown labour market. Researchers are also breaching and bridging disciplinary boundaries and analytical categories to try to understand the dynamic and political nature of work and work-related learning. In the midst of all of these changes, it is perhaps time to pause and collectively inquire into where we are with adult education and learning in the VUCA world of work. This preconference calls for papers and presentations that deal with theories, policies, practices and pedagogies related to workplace and professional education and learning. Some of the topics and themes that we hope to address include:

  • Workplace education and learning: policies, practices and pedagogies across place
  • Continuous professional education and learning: policies, practices and pedagogies across place
  • Ethics in work- and profession-related education and learning
  • Social justice and social equity in work and profession-related education and learning
  • Development of innovative academic and professional degree/training programs
  • Theoretical innovation and philosophical inquiry of work- and profession-related education and learning
  • Others related to work- and profession-related learning in the VUCA world



Hongxia Shan, Associate Professor

University of British Columbia



Yonghong Ma, Professor

Beihang University, Beijing, China


The concept of lifelong learning, growing in strength from the late 1960's, has taken hold in discussions of many aspects of learning, education, employment and quality of life. Indeed, the term is ubiquitous, but what does it mean? Perhaps more importantly, what might it mean? AEGT2020 provides an opportunity for scholars and practitioners from different organizations and countries to come together to share current perspectives and research on lifelong learning and to identify directions and possibilities for future research and perhaps collaborative efforts. Gaining a shared deeper understanding on what we discern as lifelong learning's meaning, purposes, goals, etc., may afford us opportunities to work across organizations and national boundaries.



Linda Morris, President

Coalition of Lifelong Learning Organizations (COLLO)


Adult Learning Australia (ALA) is excited to be celebrating its 60th anniversary in 2020. This session will provide an opportunity to reflect on and celebrate the achievements of adult learning over the last 60 years and will also provide an opportunity to imagine what adult learning might look like into future.

The changing landscape of adult learning and the role of adult and community education (ACE) in Australia has evolved over the last 60 years into an identifiable sector that works to represent and meet the diverse needs of the communities it serves.  Since its inception in 1960, ALA has continued to contribute to ACE though formal, informal and non-formal learning, incorporating language, literacy and numeracy, general education skills and non-accredited and accredited training. It has further developed to respond to changing industrial, socio-economic and technological circumstances and provides pathways and input to the productivity agenda for national skills and workforce development. The sector is also recognised for the social capital, community capacity, social participation and social cohesion it brings to learners and their communities.

This session is particularly relevant for anyone interested in how adult learning and community education has evolved in Australia and how we might build a strong future for the sector.

Our guest panelists come from diverse backgrounds and can provide their own unique view of adult learning past, present and future.

The session will include the launch of the ALA book: Adult Learning Australia turns 60 - Looking Back, Casting Forward. All registered attendees will receive a e-copy of the publication as part of their registration fee.



Trace Ollis, Senior Lecturer
Adult, Vocational & Applied Learning
Deakin University

or via Jenny Macaffer, Adult Learning Australia: