Lessons for Sport from OECD Education Insights

Andreas Schleicher (Head of the Indicators and Analysis Division of OECD’s Directorate for Education) visited Australia earlier this month (May 2010). One of his presentations whilst in Australia, Seeing Your Education System in the Mirror of Other OECD Systems, can be found on SlideShare.

His presentation included data from the OECD report The High Cost of Low Educational Performance. This YouTube video outlines some of the key points of the report (please excuse the music!).

I think both OECD resources have fascinating implications for decision-makers in the governance of sport and for coaches as they contemplate long-term development. The report “uses recent economic modelling to relate cognitive skills … to economic growth, demonstrating that relatively small improvements to labour force skills can largely impact the future well-being of a nation. The report also shows that it is the quality of learning outcomes, not the length of schooling, which makes the difference.”

I am keen to promote high challenge/high support learning environments and liked Andreas’s slide (27) from his presentation:

Andreas explores how continuous professional development can transform education. Within his data there is an important message about innovation and insight. His case study of Finland should resonate with any sport or coach seeking to bring about cost effective change.

I liked too his juxtaposition of integration and personalised learning (slide 35):

After looking at the report and the Slideshare presentation I wondered how a sport system at the macro level (a national sport system) and at the micro level (the club) might support an innovative investment in learning that might take a decade to develop.

Andreas’s slide on skill development (slide 15) raises the question of lead and lag investments in a sport system.

His final slide (slide 41) encouraged me to think how a system can be changed and what role intrapreneurial vision might play in change. Do sport systems evolve despite or because of inherent conservatism? How does any macro or micro system move from the left to the right of the slide below?

Andreas’s presentation and the report share how Finland did it in education!

Photo Credit

Bouw houten huis in Finland

#HPRW10: Peter Kean and the benefits of technology roadmaps

Tim Kelly (AIS Performance Research Centre) introduced Peter Kean.

Peter’s talk outlined and discussed the process of technology roadmapping (TRM) as a tool for collaborative planning that might be of interest to high performance sport.

Peter suggested that a TRM is a document that:

  • Summarises a need.
  • Records information available about the identified need that has arisen from some key tends and drivers.
  • Identifies technologies
  • Provides some information for cost/benefit/time trade off discussions

Peter noted that TRMs can be developed for a ten-year time scale but acknowledged that high performance sport might have different rhythms:  2012, 2014 and 2016 as increments within a six-year plan. Sport plans could be front end loaded for 2012 whilst exploring other opportunities in the medium and longer-term.

Peter used an example of a TRM from a CSIRO and automotive industries group to share a visualisation of a TRM. (Note: Stamm, A., Thiel, D.V., Burkett, B., James, D.A., Roadmapping Performance Enhancement Measures and Technology in Swimming, The Impact of Technology on Sport III, F. Fuss, A. Subic, S. Ujihashi ed., Taylor and Francis, 2009 (in press)) For another example see Nu Angle’s Roadmapping publication.

Peter suggested that the benefits of a TRM include:

  • Identification of critical needs
  • Goals are made into steps
  • Key drivers and enablers identified
  • Resources and capabilities available noted
  • Strategy for delivery articulated
  • Outlines opportunities for competitive advantage

Peter considered next how to create a TRM. His steps include:

  • Define the scope of the boundaries
  • List drivers and needs
  • List delivery capabilities
  • Identify technology drivers and gaps
  • Identify and rank opportunities
  • Report back

He indicated that Day 2 of #HPRW10 would use this approach and brainstorm issues around twelve sports. The workshops would articulate:

  • Trends and drivers
  • Innovation needs
  • Capabilities in the national system

There are three steps to this workshop process.

Step 1: Identify Needs

  • What is the most important technology?
  • What are the bottlenecks?
  • What research is required to enable delivery?

A brainstorm matrix for this step will address: need, timeframe, obstacles, requirement and target, organisations.

Step 2: Delivery Capability

A brainstorm matrix for this step will address: requirement and target, technology/capability, target user, key sectors, technology drivers, organisation type.

Step 3: Meeting Need

A brainstorm matrix for this step will address: technology driver, potential, organisation, technology readiness level.

Peter concluded his talk with a discussion of the opportunities provided by a TRM process: strengths, what is missing? competitors’ response? He reemphasised that a TRM approach is a process. At #HPRW10 it is intended to summarise workshop discussions of roadmaps and distribute these in order to pursue opportunities systematically.

Photo Credits

Map Reading by Headlight

Captain Cook, Hyde Park

#HPRW10 Day 2: Mapping

Day Two at #HPRW10 has roadmapping as its theme (program Day 2).

The day starts with a keynote address by Peter Kean (CSIRO) The Value of Creating Technology and Research Roadmaps. There follows (at 9.30am) a discussion of performance challenges and the key determinants of success in Olympic and Paralympic sports. Fours sports will explore their challenges: rowing, track and field, triathlon and Winter sport. After the morning break these sports will discuss:

  • Trends and drivers for the future innovation needs of the sport
  • Innovation needs
  • Capabilities of the national system

After lunch (2pm) four more sports will address their roadmap issues: swimming, water polo, sailing and canoe/kayak. The day will conclude (3.30pm) with a final group of four sports: cycling, tennis, hockey and diving.

Photo Credits

Dawn Mist

Diving In