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The Popular Education Network has approximately 160 members in 60 institutions in 25 countries. Membership of the network is free, and participation in PEN conferences is open to all who subscribe to the broad values and purposes of the network (see below).

PEN defines popular education in the following way:

 Popular education is:

• rooted in the real interests and struggles of ordinary people

• overtly political and critical of the status quo

• committed to progressive social and political change in the interests of a fairer and more egalitarian society.

Popular education has the following characteristics:

• its curriculum comes out of the concrete experience and material interests of people in communities of resistance and struggle

• its pedagogy is collective, focused primarily on group as distinct from individual learning and development

• it attempts to forge a direct connection between education and social change.

The conference is open to all who work in the Academy and who in general terms can subscribe to the above way of thinking about popular education.

If you are interested in a fuller account of this particular view of popular education and its relation to higher education, see Crowther J, Galloway V and Martin I (eds.) (2005)

Popular Education: Engaging the Academy – International Perspectives Leicester, UK: National Institute of Adult Continuing Education (ISBN 1 86201 209 1).

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Last Updated: 5 June 2013

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