Open and Online Higher Education, The Dutch Policy Line

Submitted by:
Juriaan van Kan, MSc. Senior policy officer,
Dutch Ministry of Education, Culture and Science



Is a ‘policy’ needed?
Yes, a policy is needed. If you want to invest in open and online higher education, as the Ministry of Education wants to do, you need to think it through.

If so, what sort of policy?
We would like to see a few things happening. Most important, we formulated a goal to raise the quality of education with open and online innovations. To achieve this, we stimulate innovative projects with the stimulation fund ‘open and online’. Resources of these projects need to be shared under a Creative Commons license. But, more importantly we try to move universities in formulating a vision on open and online education. For instance, open and online projects need to be co-financed by the university board and in 2016, most of the universities of applied sciences formed a ‘open coalition’ to actively share their educational resources.

What is also really important in creating an innovative movement is the room for experimentation. That’s why we explicitly follow the policy to not introduce new legislation that stands in the way of innovation. On top, we try to cut the legislative boundaries that universities come across.

How do you develop a policy?
This is where we need the stakeholders. We need our policy to be effective in achieving our goals. Fortunately, in the Netherlands we do have a lot of early adopters on this subject. We listen to them, discuss our collective objectives with them and actively involve them in the realization of Dutch policy. It’s only in this way that we can make our education excellent!



Open Education Policy Webinar: What is Open Policy? Does Open Policy make a difference? How are you affected by Open Policy? View the webinar, recorded June 14, 2017, with global policy experts discussing open education policy.

Amanda Coolidge, Webinar Host, BCcampus, Canada; Open Education Policies in British Columbia and the OER Development Tool
Cable Green, Creative Commons, U.S
Ishan Abeywardena, Commonwealth of Learning, Canada;Institutional OER Policy Template and examples of Open Education Policies Globally
Kristina Peters, #GoOpen lead, U.S.
Igor Lesko, Open Education Consortium, South Africa;  Wrap up with discussion on his PhD work on open policy


Resources mentioned during the webinar:

OER Policy Development Tool

COL Institutional OER Policy Template

Open Licensing Playbook for Government

CC Certificate for Government (still in development)

Commonwealth Policy Brief on Open Educational Resources

Alternative Learning Department OER Resources

Open Policy in Washington State – for K12 Education

#GoOpen resources

#GoOpen District Launch Packet 

Regional #GoOpen Summits

GO-GN Global OER Graduate Network

Policy examples:
Sri Lanka


Interviews on Open Policy with the Kyrgyzstan Delegation.  During OEGlobal 2017 in Cape Town, we were honored to have a discussion with the delegation from Kyrgyzstan to discuss Open Policy, what it means to their country, and how they see it affecting the future.   



What does Open Policy mean to you and to your country? 

Interview with:  Dastan Bekeshev, Member of Parliament, Deputy Chairman, Economic and Fiscal Policy Committee,
Kyrgyz Republic
(English Translation)


What changes do you hope will happen based on Open Policy and why is it important to you?

Interview with: Meerim Tokocheva, Program Coordinator, Soros Foundation, Kyrgyzstan


Interview with: Lira Samykbaeva, Information Program Director, Soros Foundation, Kyrgyzstan


You are invited to be interviewed by a student!   As part of the OPEN BADGE NETWORK MOOC course, Open Badges – An emerging movement to recognise non-formal and informal learning, students will be engaged in an activity to discuss synergies between different elements of Open Education including Open Badges, Open Educational Resources, Open Collaboration with a focus on opening of Higher Education.  In support of the Year of Open, the aim of this activity is to contact stakeholders promoting Open Education and enquire about how the promoters of Open Education see the role of Open Badges for Open Education, especially the synergies between Open Badges, Open Educational Resources, Open Collaboration and other elements of Open Education.  
Interviews will take place in June.  Responses will be posted during the week of 3-9 July.

Send an email to if you’d like to volunteer to be contacted by a student for an interview.

Submitted by: Prof. Dr. Ilona Buchem
Professor for Communication & Media Sciences
Beuth University of Applied Sciences



Open Badges and Policies including Open Education Policies

Openness by Default