OpenIDEO is an open innovation platform. Join our global community to solve big challenges for social good. Sign Up / Login or Learn more

Gross National Harmony and Gross Domestic Product as proposed drivers of a nation to re-imagine learning.

Imagination and synthesis.

Photo of rajendra bendre
0 2

Written by

I am a.....

  • Founder - Creative Wandering

Tell us about your idea

You can find my detailed proposal in the attached PDF file. Please feel free to download and read the same. 

Below is the central idea. Impact of GDP on a child:

A system by definition is a set of inter-related elements organized to serve a particular function or to seek a particular goal. During system design, all the required elements (components) are designed with the goal of the system in mind. 

Once a system is implemented we CANNOT tweak individual components to add new features to its final goal without unintended consequences. This can create system wide impact due to interconnectedness and interdependence between every element (component) of the system. 

Presently most countries have an overarching system that drives the entire nation, which is the economic system. A few key indicators (GDP indicators) are used to track the economic health of a nation. 

Since achieving year on year increase in GDP is the goal set by a nation, all its elements (components) develop structures that support in maximizing that goal. 

Like all other systems, the education system is embedded in a system of systems. Due to its interconnectedness and interdependence with a large number of societal systems, GDP does have an impact on the structures that have to be put in place to implement the education system. 

Since every child is a consumer of the education system, he/she is thus impacted by the overarching goal of the nation which is maximizing GDP. 

Every leader in the world has at one time or another stressed that “What you cannot measure you cannot improve.” 

So, if we do not measure the harmony indicators as a nation, we can NEVER improve harmony in the nation at any level. 

So, it is proposed here to have Gross National Harmony AND Gross Domestic Product together, for tracking Harmony indicators and Economic indicators. 

This might be the only way to re-imagine learning in the education system. 

In any case most nations are expecting negative GDP this year and possibly even the next few years. 

So, let us work hard on maximizing harmony. This can ensure return of all meaningful planetary health indicators to normal levels – a reason to Celebrate!

What part(s) of the pre-COVID school system do you wish to leave in the past? Why?

1) GDP as a single means of tracking progress made by nations. We need to leave this behind since it does not measure harmony at the level of the individual (self), body, family, society, nature and existence. By doing this it leaves no scope for re-imagining learning in the education system, except for a little cosmetic change. Thus GDP has an impact on the largest consumer of the education system which is a child. 2) The teacher-centric teaching model needs to be replaced by peer-to-peer learning model. Students learn exponentially when the peer-to-peer model is used in combination with other innovative learning methods and has the potential to drastically reduce the stress in the education system 3) Academic time lines must be reduced by 10 years. This is because most of the skills taught in school can be done today with greater accuracy, precision and predictability by AI and ML. So we need to seriously remove unwanted stuff from the school and college education curricul

Tell us a little bit about yourself and what inspired you to share this idea.

I'm a human being in awe. A continuous learner and one who considers fellow human beings as the most precious assets on planet earth. I am aware that a child who has a few trillion cells in the body has emergent potential which none of us can even imagine. Just two hydrogen atoms and one oxygen atom result in the emergent property of water which is the basis of all life on earth. If 3 atoms have that emergent potential imagine a child with a few trillion cells (I am not talking in terms of atoms!). 

By having something as simplistic as GDP for tracking progress of a nation we are denying ourselves the possibility of unleashing the infinite potential in our children. We have decided to restrict their possibilities in a few hundred skills only to be enslaved in corporations etc. 

The founder, teacher and students at Muni International School, Delhi, Universal Human Values and my own life experiences have inspired me to share this idea.

What region are you located in?

  • South-eastern Asia

Where are you located?

I am located in a village called Parkala which is 4 kilometers from a well known education hub town called Manipal. Manipal is about 15 kms from the ocean on the west coast of India and is part of Udupi district in the state of Karnataka. We are about 350 kms from Bangalore. I am surrounded by beautiful lush greenery with a lake at a little distance in front of my house. We are visited by around 250 varieties of birds here and the COVID-19 situation seems to have made them all chirpier.
View more

Attachments (4)

Reimagine Learning Challenge - openIDEO - Rajendra Bendre - Proposal - v1.2.pdf

Re-imagine Learning Challenge - detailed Proposal. Gross National Harmony and Gross Domestic Product as proposed drivers of a nation to re-imagine learning.


Join the conversation: