The Mind of the Universe
The Mind of the Universe is a unique open content knowledge public television and internet project to open up broadcasting for education and access to scientific output worldwide. This initiative was presented at Neth-ER by the VPRO (a Dutch broadcasting organisation), The Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW) and UNESCO.
Open TV-series on science
Rob van Hattum and GertJan Kuiper, Directors TV & Digital VPRO, explained the initiative: The Mind of the Universe is a ten-episode television series, a journey along the frontiers of science. The greatest thinkers and scientists of our time will be portrayed and questioned about the boundaries of their discipline and the future state of knowledge. The research and almost all the original filmed footage will, together with the programs, become available as open content. It is the first time for a public broadcaster to share content with such an open license by which others can reuse, revise, remix and redistribute the original footage of the TV series in other countries and languages.
More open content and learning to come
Fred Mulder, emeritus Dutch UNESCO Chair in Open Educational Resources, addressed the entry into the new World of Open that The Mind of the Universe can provide. Moreover, the TV series is to be considered ‘merely’ as an appetizer to much more. By connecting the TV themes to an expanding digital content base on the internet, made accessible by a global community of primarily experienced volunteers, people can broaden or deepen their knowledge. And by providing well-designed learning tracks threading through the available content, people will be facilitated for real learning.
Marike Bontenbal, representing the Netherlands National Commission for UNESCO, was quite clear why UNESCO has awarded its patronage to The Mind of the Universe: its mission very well coincides with UNESCO’s mission of opening access to knowledge and opening up education to as many learners around the globe as possible.The promoters of The Mind of the Universe are looking for friends or ambassadors of the project in other countries, to help its international rollout. Prof. José van Dijck, president of the KNAW, Dutch partner of The Mind of the Universe, recorded a video message in which she underlined the importance of the initiative, opening up knowledge to the world.