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Revised version of Open Education Greenland (OEG) report available from OKFN, 5 February 2014 -

Greenland (Greenlandic: Kalaallit Nunaat) is an autonomous country within the Kingdom of Denmark, located between the Arctic and Atlantic Oceans, east of the Canadian Arctic Archipelago. Though physiographically a part of the continent of North America, Greenland has been politically and culturally associated with Europe (specifically Norway and later Denmark) for more than a millennium. In 2008, the people of Greenland passed a referendum supporting greater autonomy; 75% of votes cast were in favour. Greenland is, in terms of area, the world's largest island, over 3/4 of which is covered by the only contemporary ice sheet outside of Antarctica. With a population of 56,370 (2013), it is the least densely populated country in the world. Its capital is Nuuk.

Further information

For further general information see Wikipedia:Greenland.

Education in Greenland

For a general description of education in Greenland see Education:Greenland.

OEG notes:

Greenland has... around 90 schools with very different sizes. Larger schools are in the main towns such as the capital Nuuk, some schools in the settlements have just 2 pupils. Another important factor is the need for inclusion and identity: the need to provide high-quality education in Greenlandic and avoiding migration. The geographic and educational situation is therefore very different from most European countries. However, many initiatives and projects are on the way to reform and improve education for all.


For a description more focussed to e-learning see E-learning:Greenland.

OEG notes:

Many new initiatives have been started, promoting for example mobile learning with iPads/tablets and fostering Joint Productive Activities through interaction on the Internet. Social software / web 2.0 activities are also lounged for teacher networking and collaborative activities. These will be strongly influencing education – ODS integrates therefore existing networks and new teacher collaborations. Furthermore, inclusion is an important contextual aspect: there is a strong need to provide high-quality education to all settlements with limited monetary and staff resources. Last but not least, Greenland has been very active to achieve it autonomy which also is visible in education.

Quality procedures

Internet in Greenland

Internet in Education

Copyright law in Greenland

Copyright law in Education

OER Initiatives in Greenland

No evidence found of OER initiatives in Greenland.

National OER initiatives

Regional OER initiatives

Institutional OER initiatives

OER policy aspects

OEG recommends the following policy approach:

  1. Awareness building: As in many other settings, teachers, administrators and decision makers are not aware of the opportunities of OER. Creating awareness and knowledge on the possibilities of OER and related topics is a must. It is necessary to build competences in particular on rights and licenses but most important is the discussion of OER benefits (such as cost savings, quality improvements and innovation).
  2. National and organizational policies: Greenland’s ICT and educational policies are very favorable for OER uptake. However, organizations (as in most other European countries) need to develop strategies for OER uptake, in particular recognition for OER development by teachers and lecturers.
  3. Integration: OER cannot be implemented as an isolated activity. It is very important to integrate OER into key programs and projects. In Greenland, several national activities have been launched (such as learning management systems, mobile learning projects). To assure sustainability in the project, the bottom-up approach is necessary, so participants feel co-ownership of the project, which is essential to integrate OER into those initiatives. Translation of the content of the project into Greenlandic is necessary to the key participants of the project; these are mainly monolingual teachers and parents. This could create a foundation for building a sustainable Community of Practice platform and OER in Greenlandic context. Always having the autonomy of the schools in mind, the overall perspective is necessary in the pursuit of coordinating the projects.
  4. Infrastructure and Resources: It is necessary to provide alternatives to high bandwidth solutions. Not all schools can participate for example in bandwidth-consuming solutions. It is necessary to create offline or low bandwidth alternatives. There is a project about digital infrastructure for teachers within the school but a technological solution for implementing the frame in other schools is necessary.
  5. Inclusion: OER is a strong vehicle to provide high-quality education for diverse groups of learners. However, it is necessary to adapt OER towards specific needs and requirements. Localization and contextualization: There is a strong need to find simple ways of transforming OER into local languages and adapt learning activities to cultural characteristics. It is necessary to provide localization tools (such as automatic translation, collaboration). Most important is to create networks of educators which share the idea of open education and are committed to work collaboratively across borders and cultural heritage.
  6. Collaboration: One-way transfer of OER will never work; this would just be a new way of educational colonialism. It is necessary to collaborate and develop OER together! In particular in schools, partnerships should be developed and utilized to collaboratively develop and improve resources. Experience exchange and inter-organizational learning: OER partnerships are a strong instrument for educational development.
  7. Experience exchange: should be facilitated between Greenlandic and other countries. In particular, Nordic partnerships (Nordic partners in ODS and Nordic OER) should be encouraged due to the similarities of educational systems and values. If organizations commit to joint activities, all partners can benefit from the common experiences and expertise.



Open Education Greenland (OEG) report available from OKFN, 5 February 2014 -

This is based on:

OER off the beaten track: Open Education in Greenland, by

  • Jan M. Pawlowski, Henri Pirkkalainen, University of Jyväskylä, Finland (email:
  • Ole Thorleifsen, Inerisaavik, Greenland
  • Sofoklis A. Sotiriou, Ellinogermaniki Agogi, Greece

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