Who I am
My name is Michael Sean Gallagher. I am Co-Founder and Director of Panoply Digital, a consultancy dedicated to ICT and mobile for development (M4D); we have worked with USAID, GSMA, Cambridge University and more on education and development projects. I am a researcher as well at the University of Edinburgh on the Near Futures Teaching project, a project that explores how teaching at The University of Edinburgh unfold over the coming decades, as technology, social trends, patterns of mobility, new methods and new media continue to shift what it means to be at university. The Near Future Teaching project is about working together to co-design the future of digital education at Edinburgh. We are running a series of workshops, talks, think- tanks, interviews and other activities both online and off: our aim is to draw together the views of students and staff to help design a future for our teaching based on the big ideas, values and visions of those who have a stake in it. Previously, I was the Research Associate on the NERC, ESRC, and AHRC Global Challenges Research Fund sponsored GCRF Research for Emergency Aftershock Forecasting (REAR) project. I was an Assistant Professor at Hankuk University of Foreign Studies (한국외국어대학교) in Seoul, Korea. I have also completed a doctorate at University College London (formerly the independent Institute of Education, University of London) on mobile learning in Asia Pacific (Korea).
My research focuses on the critical examination of the mobilities exhibited by groups and sectors in flux and how technology is used to both structure and manage these mobilities. Post-Brexit, with greater concentrations of international students and refugees, with the unbundling of labour and education, with a global edtech regime emerging in developing contexts largely unmooring local educational expertise and displacing higher education as a vehicle for social mobility, this research focus provides a framework to investigate these movements holistically and to begin to address the larger intractable challenges that may stunt educational progress in development contexts. I routinely employ mobilities theory and its attendant actor network theory to identify “the distribution of agency between people, places, and material assemblages of connectivity” (Sheller, 2017) and the role digital education might serve in an increasingly unbundled intersectional environment.
I am currently a consultant on several learning design projects, including the World Bank’s Open Learning Campus, where I work on their open courses, conduct research on open learning and digital education, and contribute to learning analytics and course design. I was a facilitator of the MobiMOOC course and a member of the MobiMOOC Research Team. I am a Fellow in the Higher Education Academy (HEA), in keeping with the requirements of the UK Professional Standards Framework. Previously, I was the Education & Outreach Manager, Research & Learning Environments at a very large academic database. In this capacity, I focused on the creation of scholarly networks of activity surrounding the sciences. I also conducted much of our organization’s social media presence. Formerly, I worked for Aluka, a not-for-profit digital library of scholarly materials by and about Africa. In that capacity, I worked often throughout Africa conducting workshops on information literacy and online research. I have a background in education, having worked as a teacher for many years both in the United States and Korea. I have a Masters in Library and Information Science degree (MLIS), with a concentration in the management of digital information. I also have a Masters in Education (digital education) at the University of Edinburgh. I have taught for more years that I can remember. My personal CV, in case you are interested, as well as my Panoply Digital one.
I am an American by birth, but an expat by choice.
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