nologies, it pulls together technological insights and innovation and links
these to the role that informatics
plays in the development of personal
life and of society. In this way, future
generations will have the knowledge
and skills from informatics to become competent, constructive, and
critical co-creators of the digital future.
In a context where informatics education begins early in primary school
and is carried forward through to the
later years of high school, there is
the opportunity to develop thoughts
about the possible wider relevance
of ideas from informatics, and to develop them in a meaningful way that
places emphasis on the human (and
societal) benefits and implications.
Just making suggestions about possible improvements opens the door
to considerations about (
software-inspired) innovation, and more.
It is important that students acknowledge software as creator and
bearer of values and culture—that
these aspects are explicitly or implicitly embedded in the software.
Software is formed through design
processes that include critical decision-making; students must learn to
creatively develop software, and learn
to analyze and understand the impacts of software and digital artifacts
in general. For example, these visions
for a strong human and societal perspective are thoroughly embedded in
the newly designed Danish curriculum for informatics in school.
Augmented intelligence. The
concept of augmented intelligence
relates to the effective use of informatics in augmenting human intelligence. The discussion above regarding STEM was one instance of that
though even there, there is scope for
extending that further.
Developments in language translation, voice recognition and simulation, and related advances fueled by
developments in machine learning
suggest great scope for reshaping the
curriculum in many disciplines.
The role of ethics. Those who de-
velop software ought to do so in a re-
sponsible manner, ensuring that ‘bad
things’ do not happen. The related
issues tend to be captured in a code
of conduct that provides guidance on
good practice. In the past, such codes
have tended to stress matters such
as ‘do not cause harm’. While this
remains important, a more enlight-
ened approach places an emphasis
on contributing positively to the ben-
efit of a fair, just, and secure society
through the use of computers and
computing. The recent ACM Code
of Ethics and Professional Conduct5
takes such a view.
The role of teachers. Teachers are
the key to the success of the implementation of any study program and
the introduction of any new curriculum or technologies. A good supply
of well-educated and enthusiastic
teachers is crucial to support every
discipline in schools at all levels, but
the lack of suitable teachers at all
levels also forms a bottleneck for the
successful implementation of Informatics for All. Thus, efforts should
be devoted to recruitment, and to establishing a supportive informatics
The primary focus of Informatics for
All is to stimulate the recognition
that informatics is a vital, important
discipline, both as a subject of study
on its own, and also integrated with
other disciplines with many of the
ideas having relevance more broadly.
The two-tier approach facilitates
the integration of informatics into
the teaching of other disciplines, reshaping the curriculum for all disciplines and generally providing a basis
for making education systems truly
relevant for the 21st century. It also
opens up many avenues for research;
for instance, about how to teach disciplines effectively in a world of constant change.
Given that digital technology is
taking an increasingly relevant and
pervasive role, providing to all citizens an appropriate level of informatics education is necessary to ensure
balanced development of the digital
Informatics for All is a catalyst for
important thoughts for reforming the
wider educational systems to the benefit of students and employers, and
ultimately the economy of Europe.
Acknowledgments. The authors wish
to acknowledge contributions and
support from various quarters: Wendy
Hall, Bob McLaughlin, Bobby Schna-
bel and the board members of ACM
Europe, Informatics Europe, and the
original CECE team.
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Michael E. Caspersen is managing director of It-vest –
networking universities, and honorary professor at Aarhus
University, Aarhus, Denmark.
Judith Gal-Ezer is professor emerita of The Open
University of Israel, Ra’anana, Israel and vice chair of
Andrew McGettrick is professor emeritus of Strathclyde
University, Glasgow, Scotland.
Enrico Nardelli is a professor of informatics at Tor
Vergata University of Rome, Italy, and president of
© 2019 ACM 0001-0782/19/4