MySpark

MySpark

Our challenge, your solutions
Challenge winner

MySpark! Engages you with what you didn’t know you needed to know

MySpark! We learn from our experiences; in everything we do and from those we meet and there should not be a distinction between formal and informal learning. By encouraging curiosity, we are motivated to see out all opportunities to learn and all we need is that Spark to make us curious!

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Team: Team Spark.

Team members

Elena Trutnau, Agnès LE BELLAC, Laia Marimon, Mariyam Wafa, Louise Cox

Contact details

louise.cox@community.climate-kic.org

Solution description

Imagine a place where you had the time, the resources and technology to explore, experience, collaborate and learn, our solution brings all of these into one space. Allowing learners, the opportunity and giving them permission to be curious. Our solution comes in two parts:

Solution 1:

A VR bubble (MySpark) that provides a safe and purposeful VR and AR environment where learners can discover, whether this is book or resource related to a project they are working on in MS Teams (the MySpark AI has already connected with MS Teams to see what projects they are involved in and suggests possible topics they may be interested in and knows what the organisational strategies are). Or maybe they want to hear a story from a colleague, connect with people who have similar interests, a coach or someone that inspires them, well they can book out some time with that person- just like loaning a book from a library. They may decide that they just want a timeout to listen, explore and experience new things, MySpark can provide them with numerous options, such as mindfulness, digital storytelling or they may just want to connect with others for a virtual coffee, where they can see more than just heads and shoulders – all played out in an interactive 3D immersive space with sound and touch. 

Solution 2:

So the world isn’t quite ready for MySpark VR, but we can recreate a similar experience using an app that pulls together all the same information but presents in it a way that is possible today. Seamlessly working across multiple devices, similar to apps like MyFitnessPal, and the BBC news app. Our learners are provided with topics and activities that they are interested in (they set these up when they first start the app and can update them as things change over time). They can chat with others via messenger or live video. And learners are prompted to do activities that will SPARK their curiosity, like popping outside to take a photo based on the theme of the day, that they can share with others.

Both solutions provide learners with space to experience, engage, connect and learn. The more MySpark learns about you, from data gathered about the projects you are working on, your interests and even what keeps you up at night, the more it will spark your curiosity!

Solution context

Self-motivated, lifelong or continuous learning is not part of our culture and habits; it's not seen to be valued, so we don't allow time or space for it nor do we have the right mindsets in place to change (e.g. encouraging and embracing curiosity). Furthermore, the digital tools we use take away the focus from the learning and sometimes may even get in the way, for instance, by adding more complexity to the learning process. Content is not curated about what we are interested in, but what the organisation tells us to be interested in.

Solution target group

Design for anyone who is time-poor and does not engage with traditional learning approaches. Our target group has the drive to get the job done, sees learning as a distraction, but wants to engage successfully with stakeholders and be confident to know that they don’t need all the answers, they just need to know where to look.      

Solution impact

Higher engagement with digital learning resources improved confidence in engaging with others.

Targeted learning focused on the colleague's areas of work and current challenges, blurs the lines between "work" and "learning", learning feels natural.

Various types of learning opportunities brought together with help the learner to engage in the way learning works for them, while still being challenged to explore new ways. (content-based learning like videos/ articles, learning from listening to stories, learning through curiosity).

Solution tweet text

MySpark gets you interested and engaged with what you didn’t know you needed to know, by providing a safe bubble to connect and engage with your curious self. The more MySpark knows about you and what you are doing at the moment, the more it will spark your curiosity!

Solution innovativeness

Traditional educational approaches are often focused on remembering knowledge to then complete a test at the end. Curiosity is seen as a luxury in time-poor, goal-driven, task-orientated organisations, and yet engagement in learning is low, so MySpark hopes to reconnect learners with what they want they learn, and aligning this to their current projects, organisational strategies and personal development. Content is curated and reframed so that it can connect with the learners, as they would like to see it, for example, they could watch a video or listen to a podcast on design thinking. It’s the same topic, just different delivery formats.

Technologies like opensource VR could be used to create the environment and AI used to constantly collect data about the individual, the organisation and wider societal and environmental factors. The aim is to create a seamless and easy to use application that works across different devices, without having to swap between platforms. 

MySpark also addresses our need as human beings for connection with others, by using technology to create spaces to engage. And provides spontaneous check-ins and notifications to spark our curiosity.

Solution transferability

MySpark could be used in any organisation, across different stakeholders and even for personal learning and growth. MySpark is your companion to help support lifelong learning and curiosity.

Solution sustainability

If we needed to start work tomorrow, we would look to create an MVP of MySpark, which could include:

  • Curating content, reviewing existing and identifying any gaps
  • Cataloguing content and create a logic for selection, based on EIT Climate KIC’s strategies, behaviours, key projects and personal interests
  • Using existing LMS (Brightspace) as a platform
  • Integration between Brightspace and Teams so MySpark can collect data on the user (projects being worked on, meeting subjects, etc..)
  • Create a February Curiosity Festival to launch the platform
  • Identify people who would be great advocates to create inspirational videos/podcasts/blogs
  • Identify MySpark champions who could provide coaching, suggest content and help evolve the platform.

The MVP would allow us to collect feedback to ensure MySpark provides the best experience for all users.

Eventually we would explore whether we could create a VR and AI space, using opensource technology like Hubs by Mozilla or create a bespoke environment using Oculus Rift. We would also need to focus on creating the technical and AI infrastructure that applies the logic to selecting the best resources based on learner needs.

Solution team work

We did great!

We followed a human-centric approach, focusing on people's needs and key blockers that prevent people from engaging with learning opportunities, defining our challenge/ objectives in detail and avoided jumping to solutions too soon or having any pre-conceived ideas. By following this approach, the actual solution was easy to develop as we had a great narrative to work with.

The combination of skills and experiences meant that we could look at the solution from different points of view.

Just in case the Vimeo link doesn't work on the submission https://vimeo.com/478693014

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DigiEduHack 2021 partners & supporters

DigiEduHack is an EIT initiative under the European Commission's Digital Education Action Plan, led by EIT Climate-KIC and coordinated by Aalto University. In 2021, the main stage event is hosted by the Slovenian Presidency of the Council of the European Union in cooperation with the International Research Center on Artificial Intelligence (IRCAI) under the auspices of UNESCO.

EIT Climate-Kic

Aalto University

European commission

Slovenian Ministry of Education, Science and Sport

International Research Center on Artificial Intelligence

EIT Community: Human Capital