LEARNING CITIES / LEARNING COMMUNITIES
These rather popular concepts can be defined in very many ways according to very different contexts. In Xploit one of the definitions of learning communities and cities is the systematic exchange of innovative learning resources between the city or region and the European learning communities. This exchange involves the existence of a structured and well-organized interaction between the policy level, the educational practices and the learners. This is called framework and infrastructure in the Transversal Action 4. Another element is the visible impact of this interaction: new learning opportunities and resources being exploited in different contexts, and re-worked for new contexts. In a learning community or city the benefits for the individual and for the community can be measured. In the Xploit project the difference between learning communities and learning cities are pragmatically defined: learning communities are in the proces of establishing such new infrastructures, perhaps only in specific parts of the community, whereas the learning city has established a systematic and mainstreamed practice of exchange of learning resources between different communities in the city and in interaction with a group of cities or regions in other European countries. In the learning city all major communities are penetrated by exploring, exploiting and exchanging learning resources. Xploit is a project addressing the development of learning communities, whereas the following network project is addressing the challenges of learning cities and the European dimension of learning cities.