Giunti Labs, Europe's leading e-learning and mobile learning content management solutions (LCMS) vendor, is taking part in PROLIX, a four-year research and development project co-funded by the European Commission under the Sixth Framework Programme, Priority 2 'Information Society Technologies'. The PROLIX project, which brings together 19 partners from nine countries, is coordinated by IMC Germany and provides LMS, LCMS and business intelligence tools aimed at aligning learning with business processes, by bridging e-learning and business intelligence tools by means of shared standards and interfaces.
The PROLIX architecture is designed through a service-orientated open framework named OBELIX (Open Business intelligence and E-Learning Interoperability and eXchange framework) and implemented by means of blending both vendor (such as Giunti Labs’ learn exact LCMS) and open source components.
As a target outcome, the PROLIX architecture will enable organisations to improve their employees' competencies more quickly, as business requirements change. The goal is a minimum 20 per cent reduction in the ‘time to competency’ to be measured in the workforces of the large organisations and multinationals which are engaged in the project.
"The delay between the identification of learning needs and actual learning affects the competitiveness of any company," explained Giunti Labs' CEO, Fabrizio Cardinali. "The PROLIX project aims to make people and organisations more competitive by reducing the time it takes to fill competency gaps and build proficiency, based on business needs and daily work processes."
The key innovation in PROLIX consists of a process and competency driven framework which interlinks business process intelligence tools with knowledge management and learning environments.
Angus Turpin, manager for Giunti Labs in the UK and Ireland, commented: "Not only should the delay between identifying a learning need and the actual learning taking place be as short as possible but the learning material must be targeted to the learner's individual learning style and behaviour.
"Personalised learning solutions are needed in order to improve an employee's work performance significantly. Achieving this involves using technological solutions which will allow the user to access learning content any time it is needed - and to access it via the most convenient device available at that time."
The PROLIX project envisages a system that allows for business process driven learning at the workplace, taking into account the single learner and her/his needs as well as the learner's organisation's requirements. In addition, the learner will be able to initialise a learning task her/himself, thus producing self-guided learning in corporate environments.
PROLIX supports a complete learning process life cycle from analysing complex business situations and identifying individual and organisational learning goals, to analysing competencies and matching them with individual skills. According to Cardinali, this should lead to the definition and execution of appropriate learning interventions and the simulation of competency oriented processes, with a constant monitoring of learners' performance with respect to defined learning and business goals.
"PROLIX combines business processes with learning processes in corporate environments, enabling business process driven learning at the workplace, taking into account both the needs of the individual learner and those of the company," Turpin added.
The solutions under development will support and enhance the speed and effectiveness of both formal and informal learning processes, integrating learning management platform technologies - such as Giunti Labs' learn eXact LCMS - with support services.
Fabrizio Giorgini, R&D Manager of Giunti Labs, commented: "Learning models will enable the identification of learning scenarios for process-orientated learning. The models will be described according to the IMS Learning Design specification.
”The first prototype of learning design editor has been already developed and integrated in the reference LCMS, Giunti Labs’ learn eXact.
“A simple and intuitive graphical user interface allows the models to be created or modified and learning resources, roles, activities and services to be defined according to the particular business scenario. Developed web-services for the access to the learning resources repositories enable the exchange and interoperability of e-learning pedagogy and materials - and encourage greater reuse and efficiency."
The first PROLIX/OBELIX open workshop is planned for EC-TEL2007 in Crete, on 18th September. Participation will be free of charge.
PROLIX aims to deliver an open learning platform. It will integrate the systems needed to fully support the learning life cycle by providing interfaces to skills management systems, learning management systems, LCMSs and knowledge management systems as well as performance measurement systems.
In addition, PROLIX will provide learning process workflow services (LPWS) to manage learning processes. Learning activities and business process needs will be aligned by integrating learning services into existing business process platforms.
PROLIX will allow the European learning solutions industry to integrate its solutions in business process architectures with limited additional effort. To do so, the PROLIX architecture will be designed according to emerging Service Oriented Architecture (SoA) paradigms.
PROLIX will provide a framework of services to enable a community to register its learning materials and allow those contents to be searched, queried and analysed in order to identify competency gaps and plan learning activities.
The PROLIX system will result into an open, public domain reference architecture (OBELIX). This should help to facilitate industry-wide discussions about extensions, integration standards and also promote the interoperability of learning and business management systems.
About Giunti Labs
Giunti is unique in the international publishing industry.
In 1497, Giunti publishers and typographers in Florence, together with others in Venice, began modern book manufacturing. Over the years Giunti has built a ‘historical catalogue’ of huge dimensions, through a gradual process of ‘fusion’ of different publishers, but also through the creation of new brands, including Giunti Labs. Giunti Editore now includes 20 companies in the publishing sector.
Giunti Labs, which has its EMEA headquarters in Italy and offices in Milton Keynes (UK) and in Boston (US), provides a wide range of services, in response to any content, learning and knowledge management need, covering:
• Content production
• Research and development
• Technological solutions for content, learning & knowledge management
• Architectural and technological solutions for mobile & wireless
• Training and consulting
Giunti Labs provides the learn eXact® suite, Europe's leading e-learning and mobile learning content management technology. This suite is interoperable with all major vendor-driven and open source LMS and VLE solutions in the market including Oracle, SumTotal, Saba, WebCT, Blackboard, Sakai, LRN and Moodle.