Whatever happened to lifelong learning? And does it matter?

14th September 2016 18:00 to 19:15

This event is being hosted by the British Academy.

About the lecture

While adult education has a long history in Britain going back to the Workers Education Association of the 19th century, the term ‘lifelong learning’ does not extend much further back than the 1970s. The talk considers the socio-economic and technological changes that lay behind the idea of cradle to grave learning in a global context and the life enhancing benefits to be expected. The British birth cohort studies chart people’s changing lives since the second world-war, display the benefits to be gained from learning and reveal a growing learning divide. What halted lifelong learning’s progress? Where does it go next?

About the speaker

Professor John Bynner is Emeritus Professor UCL Institute of Education and prior to retirement, director, Centre for Longitudinal Studies, co-director, Wider Benefits of Learning research centre and founder director, National Research and Development Centre for Adult Literacy and Numeracy. He held earlier positions at City University Social Statistics research unit, Open University and Government Social Survey.

The lecture will be chaired by Professor John Gray FBA.


If you have any questions about this event please call the Events Team on 020 7969 5200 or email