Simon Buckingham Shum

Professor of Learning Informatics
University of Technology Sydney
Director, Connected Intelligence Centre

Simon is a transdisciplinary, applied researcher, an inveterate collaborator, never happier than immersed with colleagues who want to make a difference by thinking differently about complex problems, with a commitment to sustainable, ethical outcomes.

A career-long fascination with how computers help to make thinking visible has seen him develop a range of digital tools designed to combine human and machine intelligence to maximum effect, typically deployed at moderate scale (e.g. hundreds of users) and released open source.

His current focus is on the future of education, specifically, the contribution of human-centred design of Analytics/AI-powered tools to close the feedback loop to learners and educators, to build the capabilities needed for the future of work and citizenship. “Human-centred” requires pedagogy, design and ethics in deep dialogue with data science and systems thinking.

He shares news and pre-publication thoughts on this blog, Learning Emergence and Medium. He is a co-founder of the Society for Learning Analytics Research, and a Fellow of the RSA.

In more detail…

Partnerships and sectors: Simon has worked with a wide range of organisations, all seeking new forms of sensemaking support to tackle wicked problems… analysing best practices in international development for World Vision; curating good practices for the UK health visitors association; mapping HIV prevention programs for the UN’s International Labour Organization; supporting non-violent hostage recovery options for US Joint Forces Command; adding sensemaking tools for the Hewlett Foundation’s open educational resource initiatives; piloting an open peer review journal for BP drilling engineers; science sensemaking support for NASA’s human mission to Mars program.

Learning Analytics: Appointed as the inaugural director of the Connected Intelligence Centre (CIC), University of Technology Sydney, where he is also Professor of Learning Informatics, Simon has built a team charged with advancing the university’s mission through human-centred data science. CIC brings particular expertise in educational data science, also known as Learning Analytics, a field that he has helped to establish over the last decade.

Academic homes: Simon is something of an academic nomad, whose work is known in communities including Human-Computer Interaction, Computer-Supported Cooperative Work, Hypertext, Design Rationale, Scholarly Publishing, Computational Argumentation, Educational Technology, Learning Sciences and Learning Analytics.

Academic background: Simon brings a human-centred computing perspective to technology. He embarked with a degree in Psychology (York, 1987), when he got interested in HCI thanks to Andrew Monk. This was followed by a Masters in Ergonomics (UCL, 1988) under John Long, plus a dissertation with Phil Barnard developing an expert system for cognitive modelling in HCI, before returning to York for a PhD 1988-91 in HCI and Design Rationale (supervised by Nick Hammond, and Allan MacLean at Rank Xerox EuroPARC).

Invited talks and consulting: As a disciplinary boundary crosser and engaging communicator [Talks], Simon is in frequent demand as an invited speaker, and does small amounts of private consulting in his ‘spare time’.

Elsewhere… I’m a lifelong learner husband to Jackie, and dad to Tom, Jas and Jo. I was a moderate tennis player and university darts champion many moons ago, I still play a drumkit and cajon from time to time, and when I lived in the UK, since my 20s I was an annual pilgrim to Greenbelt Festival. The way to my heart is very simple: Thai and Tiramisu. 

I switched to WordPress in July 2008. 1996-2007 news stories are on my original news site.

2nd Int. Conf. Learning Analytics & Knowledge
2nd Int. Conf. on the Pragmatic Web

5 Responses to “Welcome!”

  1. […] Simon Buckingham Shum is a Senior Lecturer in the OUs Knowledge Media Institute, was previously the director for the OUs ambitious SocialLearn project and is currently working on trying to build collective intelligence systems around the ‘open education resources’ movement. […]

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  4. […] very excellent Simon Buckingham Shum is convening a panel on educational data science at the LAK 2013 conference in Leuven and I’m […]

  5. […] Simon Buckingham Shum – Professor of Learning Informatics, Knowledge Media Institute, The Open University, Milton […]