The global economy is highly influenced by transitions and adjustments challenges at the social, business and cultural levels. Knowledge is not just the power, but a property to highly be marketed and commercialized. Lifelong learning is considered to be a vehicle that can enable immigrant community to adapt the challenges of new global economy. Human brain is perceived to represent a new ‘grey capital’ as it is set alongside the familiar economic resources such as land, labor and finance (Field, 2006, p. 9).
This piece of research work presents the concept of lifelong learning and analyzes how this can help immigrants improve their personal and professional development and as a result improve the economic prosperity of country they migrated to. This paper investigates the role of lifelong learning in contributing to the economic and social prosperity and reflects on the personal experiences of lifelong learning in terms of personal and professional development.
Lifelong Learning and implication on immigrant community
In today’s competitive knowledge economy, lifelong learning has become a critically important strategy to make people highly competitive and productive. (World Bank, 2003). Lifelong learning is a human process and a metaphor to describe societies, regions and organizations. Lifelong learning is described as an ideal goal for better education (Parson, 1990), as a human process (Parson, 1990), as a product (Hatton, 1997) and moral duty of people (Wain, 1991). Learning is a human process and it requires consciousness and the capacity to utilize their knowledge. Lifelong learning is a continuous learning throughout one’s life directed by the individual needs and intentionality mediated by the capacities and interests (Billett, 2010, P. 402). World Bank (2003) explained that lifelong learning refers to learning throughout the lifetime including formal, non-formal and informal education and training. Formal education and training are structured programs recognized by formal education system. Non-formal education is structured education system but not recognized by national systems. Informal education and training are fully unstructured education or training systems that can take place anywhere such as home, organizations, workplace etc. Lifelong learning aims at positively influencing the inexperienced people in changing their career targets and making them highly demanded individuals by taking the self-responsibility of their learning and education. It thus assists them in developing their own learning skills (Uzunboylu and Ursen, 2011, p. 450). Technology in modern society plays significant role in lifelong learning. Distance or online-education facilitated by colleges and universities can be considered as examples for how modern technology assist lifelong learning.