Since the second half of the twentieth century, Lifelong Learning (LLL) has become a fashionable mantra, a political slogan, and an active tool to stimulate ecomic growth and foster social cohesion. However, where does its dominance lie? According to Rogers (2006) LLLs main success is that it has predominantly achieved to become mainstream, as it provided a convincing rationale for embracing the natural learning process which continues unifying education into a common process, challenging the distinctiveness of educational sectors, and ackwledging that learning takes place in different contexts, thus relocating learning in both formal and informal settings. Thence, recent conceptualisations of LLL, under the universally rising awareness that learning is but an integral part of our everyday lives, and tends to continually expand, accommodating the multitude of types, sites, practices or modes of learning, both intentional and incidental. On these grounds, this book has been conceived to explore contemporary concepts, practices, benefits and challenges associated with LLL at formal, n-formal and informal levels. How LLL is currently perceived? What are the regimes of truth LLL is informed by? What are the influences, constraints and impact of the diverse LLL sites and practices? What are the effects on learning and learning outcomes? What are the implications for policy making, as well as for the development and implementation of LLL initiatives? These are some indicative inquiries which guided the structure and the selection of themes in the present volume. Furthermore there has also been an effort to reach for multiple perspectives from different nations around the globe. The book is structured around two principal axes (theory-based and research-based studies) so as to provide in depth insights into debates and challenges that revolve around LLL, whilst combining theory and empirical research in a dialectical fashion. It may thus be of particular interest to a wide range of audiences -- such as researchers, policy makers and practitioners -- who wish to get an international perspective in LLL. This occurs through chapters that prompt reflection, showcase invative professional practices and provide impressive scopes of field research.
Dr Eugenia A Panitsides is Faculty at the School of Humanities, Hellenic Open University, Greece, where she has been teaching at postgraduate level since 2011. She has also served in several Higher education and research institutions internationally, as Adjunct and Visiting Faculty. Her academic interests draw on Lifelong Learning policy analyses, on the private and social impact of participation in lifelong education, as well as on the quality of provision of lifelong learning programs. Dr Panitsides has an extensive record of research publications in peer-reviewed academic volumes, journals and conferences. She also sits on numerous Reviewers and Editorial Boards in the UK, USA and Greece, whilst she has been Invited Keynote Speaker in a number of International Conferences.