Knowledge production in a hybrid age: Contemporary and historical perspectives on producing textbooks and digital educational media

Georg Eckert Institute for International Textbook Research, Braunschweig
Thursday 3 to Friday 4 December 2015

There is no teaching without media. But what do we know about the decision-making processes behind what is included in these materials, how they are designed, and how they shape what future generations  will know about the world? Today’s schools are media-rich environments, from traditional paper textbooks to interactive digital textbooks and open educational resources (OER). The increasing appearance of new educational technology in today’s classrooms makes it imperative to rethink classic questions about knowledge production in schools.

Who now shapes the content of today’s teaching? How are the educational publishers, which have traditionally dominated the field, reacting to their shifting role? What happens to classic textbook adoption processes in countries where educational policymakers had – or still have – significant clout in deciding which textbooks should be allowed in schools? What happens to authoritative knowledge when the printed textbook is increasingly accompanied by – or even replaced by – a networked system of digital teaching and learning materials authored by a range of diverse individuals? How can quality be assessed and maintained for digital materials? How are licensing and copyright issues affecting what teachers select for class?

These are just some of the questions which researchers are beginning to address. Research has identified the technological, medial, epistemic, social and pedagogical innovations and contingencies which shape the production of textbooks and other (digital) educational media, both today and in the past. Researchers working  in disparate fields have, however, not yet entered into a sustained dialogue with one another. In order to generate productive synergies across the fragmented field of production research, this conference aims to bring together researchers from diverse regional and disciplinary communities. In particular, it will encourage discussion between research on print-based school media and digital media as well asfrom historical and contemporary perspectives.

By drawing on this international and interdisciplinary exchange, the conference will identify core dimensions of knowledge-production for schools, and shape future perspectives on researching knowledge production in this field.

Information for participants

Public transport (Information)

Please keep us informed about your specific requirements for mobility.

Central station - Institute: Bus line 411 (direction "Lamme" - to bus stop "Maschstraße") . The Institute is at the corner of Celler Straße and Freisestraße (Google Maps). Approximately 12 Minutes.

Central station - Hotel: Bus line 411 (direction "Mascherode" - to bus stop "Staatliche Gesundheitsämter") . The is next to the bus stop (Google Maps). Approximately 7 Minutes.

Hotel - Institute: Bus line 411 (direction "Lamme". From "Staatliche Gesundheitsämter" - to bus stop "Maschstraße") . The Institute is at the corner of Celler Straße and Freisestraße (Google Maps). Approximately 20 Minutes.

Conference dinner

Our dinner will take place at Ristorante Lacupola. (Google Maps)

Please inform us about your special dietary requirements.


  • The programme is now available here.


  • Sponsored by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG).