A Short History of the Digital Revolution, Part 3 of 4

Education Educational Technology

The Impact of Information, Globalization, and Urbanization

[Read Part 1 of this Series]
[Read Part 2 of this Series]

The discovery and creation of knowledge during the Digital Age has expanded at incalculable speed due to the opportunities made possible by the availability and popular use of technology.  These possibilities coalesced through the impact caused by the combined forces of globalization, urbanization, and migration[1] 

Since the dawn of the Computer Age in the 1950s, the world’s peoples increasingly migrated to mega-population centers around the globe for economic and other reasons.  By 2015, more than half of the human race was living in cities.[2] 

The migration of people was not only urban but international as well.  The integration of individuals from around the planet with unique geographic, ethnic, economic, and cultural perspectives fostered the necessity of acquiring knowledge.[3]  The result has been a surge in life-long learning, as people have come to better understand its importance in our ever-changing world.[4]

Opportunities and Challenges for Christian Education

Great cultural advances made in the Eastern Hemisphere and the presence of enormous opportunities in the Global South have made those geographical areas globally strategic.  In addition, the West and the United States in particular continue to wield tremendous influence in the world. 

There are large numbers of Christian disciples in each of these areas of the world, giving Bible teachers and other ministers opportunities for Kingdom impact. Though tremendous opportunities were made available by the Digital Revolution, there were also limitations to what technology could do.  The world still faces staggering challenges. 

In the coming years, as the world endures the radical changes discussed, Christian disciples, congregations, and academic institutions must unite and respond to the great challenges of our time. As we collaborate and cooperate in the Great Commission, our hope is that advances in technology and information will be exploited by God’s people to help society find its way into what is now an uncertain future.


Sources

[1] Selwyn, Neil.  2013. Education in a Digital World: Global Perspectives on Technology and Education.  New York, NY: Routledge. pp. 11-21.

[2] United Nations, Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Population Division (2014). World Urbanization Prospects: The 2014 Revision, Highlights (ST/ESA/SER.A/352).  http://esa.un.org/unpd/wup/Highlights/WUP2014-Highlights.pdf.  In 1950, only 30% of the world were urban dwellers. In 2014, over half (54%) of all people lived in cities, with estimates of over 60% by 2050.

[3] United Nations Conference on Trade and Development.  Development and Globalization: Facts and Figures 2012.  (2012). http://unctad.org/en/PublicationsLibrary/webgdsdsi2012d2_en.pdf. Accessed January 5, 2015.

[4] Kim, K., Collins, Hagedorn, M., Williamson, J., Chapman, C. (2004). Participation in Adult Education and Lifelong Learning (NCES 2004-050). U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics. Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office. pp. 1-11.

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