Education professionals from 27 countries gathered at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in October to discuss the future of education and learning, as part of the inaugural J-WEL Week.

J-WEL Week is the first initiative of the Abdul Latif Jameel World Education Lab (J-WEL).  The four-day event included lectures, presentations and workshops focused on the three pillars of lifelong education: primary and secondary education, higher education, and workplace learning.

Visitors travelled from South America, Australia, the Middle East, Far East, and Europe for the event, which was themed around ‘The Power of Problem Solving’.

J-WEL, a joint venture between Community Jameel and MIT, was founded in May 2017.  It aims to help people around the world fulfil their potential by transforming education and learning at all levels and ages. It seeks to strengthen knowledge transfer and development, and equip individuals with the skills and abilities needed for the modern workplace.

MIT President, L. Rafael Reif (left) and Fady Mohammed Jameel, President of Community Jameel International (right) announce the new Abdul Latif Jameel World Education Lab (J-WEL) at MIT.

Fady Mohammed Jameel, President of Community Jameel International, said: “Education and learning are fundamental to development, building strong and diversified economies, and creating opportunity and prosperity for all. Through J-WEL, we want to bring together experts from across the education space, gathering perspectives, knowledge and experience to address the challenges facing learning at all levels, and to develop real, workable solutions. The inaugural J-WEL Week is the first step in this process, and we are delighted with the high level of engagement in the initiative.” 

J-WEL Weeks are signature, goal-oriented programs that provide members with first-hand access to MIT’s educational resources and practice. Two distinct J-WEL Weeks are run per year, each thematic, and comprising multiple modules. Members address challenges in their organizations, by defining goals and considering next steps that will allow implementation.

MIT VP of Open Learning Prof. Sanjay. Sarma kicks-off J-WEL Week by addressing the challenges and opportunities facing us in global education

Each J-WEL Week is a connected learning and exploration journey for participants. Most importantly, J-WEL Weeks will develop a close collaborative network of innovators able to impact education on local and global scales.

J-WEL Weeks set the stage for ‘deeper dive’ J-WEL Exchanges—bootcamps and workshops focusing on key topics in education, as well as for specific membership programs including those for innovative institutional design.

J-WEL is part of MIT’s broader ongoing collaborations between Community Jameel and MIT, including the Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL) and the Abdul Latif Jameel World Water and Food Security Lab (J-WAFS).