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Open Badges: Recognizing Informal Skills

Open Badges: pour une reconnaissance des compétences informelles
Published on
13 January 2022

Our experience and skills are supported by multiple practices, even if we cannot always verify the conceptual, interpersonal, and emotional benefits that they produce. The Open Badges, to be rolled out in 2022 at Grenoble Ecole de Management, pave the way for the "open recognition" of these informal skills within a local, national, and international ecosystem. Why Should Companies Take It Up?

Whether it be through event participation, community commitments, or personal achievements etc., each person's professional journey is marked by numerous, multifaceted learning experiences. However, this learning and the skills that result from it are neither recognized nor valued in students' training programs, let alone within companies. The Open Badges offered at GEM now provide a cogent response to this lack of recognition.

An Open Badge is a dynamic skill recognition tool.

What Is An Open Badge?

Open Badges : pour une reconnaissance des compétences informelles"An Open Badge is a dynamic skill recognition tool. At the heart of this project lies the issue of employability," emphasizes Luca Bisognin, GEM's Educational Advisor. At the initiative of the Mozilla Foundation and with the financial support of the MacArthur foundation, the Open Badge concept was created in 2012 to facilitate employment access for people in need. The concept, which developed very quickly in countries with a rapidly growing economy, has one goal: to find solutions that make it possible to value the real skills of those who have gone through traditional training processes. 

"Today, Open Badges respond to a key challenge remarked upon by the OECD as early as 2019, which points to the fact that some skills are falling significantly and quickly into disuse. Through the roll out of Open Badges, GEM has taken on a tool that provides solid answers in terms of adaptability to the job market, agility, and employability," notes Luca Bisognin.

How Does An Open Badge Come About?

In concrete terms, an Open Badge is an "open" digital emblem that validates a set of skills. The Open Badge can then be shared on LinkedIn and on all social networks. Its visibility, as well as the associated skills, is immediate. To do this, Open Badges are based on a standard protocol which has been supported and developed since 2016 by the global consortium IMS Global Learning. Now available in version 2.1, this same protocol provides personal, forgery-proof, transferable, and revocable badges.

The fundamental idea of Open Badges is to increase the visibility of previously invisible, yet valuable skills. Around the world, the most common use of Open Badges is to recognize a subset of informal skills that come from experience, namely soft skills (or intangible, interpersonal, and emotional skills). 

"Though at GEM, we are interested in this model, we have also forged connections with companies in order to identify the formal and informal skills our students need. For example, we have already successfully rolled out the Open Badge for Sustainability, which signifies that the student has achieved a significant level of involvement in and understanding of environmental and social issues through participation in at least four activities or modules selected by GEM's Sustainability working group (and which correspond to the skills needed to conduct sustainable business policies). Another approach is the "Common Theme Case Study" ("Cas Fil Rouge") or "Integrated Business Projects" ( Projets intégratifs d'entreprises or PIE), pedagogical tools that already allow the development of key skills needed for approaching specific company issues. In 2022, GEM's ambition, will be to actively recognize the specific skills acquired by students as part of their Integrated Business Projects. "

What Are the Benefits For Companies?

For companies, the Open Badges model allows them to better identify the skills used by GEM students during their time at the School and outside of the traditional curriculum. In the same way, the use of Open Badges makes it possible to form a network of "shared, interdisciplinary, and reciprocal trust" between students, GEM, and partner companies in the region. Like the "Badgeons les territoires" initiatives currently being tested in France, the project aims to roll out an ecosystem of open recognition of informal skills through Open Badges.

Starting in 2017, first in Normandy, then in Centre Val de Loire, Hauts de France, Aquitaine, Bourgogne-Franche-Comté, and Grand-Est etc. initiatives are becoming more common in France with the aim of uniting professional integration associations, training organizations, local authorities, and companies within regional collectives so as to be able to promote and develop new, more dynamic, and more agile recognition models. Several large French companies such as Carrefour and Renault are starting to use them. Attracted by their simplicity, the Ministry of Labor has also launched an experiment to test their usage in processes of recognition and validation of prior learning.

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    Published on 01 July 2016

    Recherche : Le big data temps réel, une nouvelle source de création de valeur

    Enregistrés et analysés en quasi temps réel grâce aux progrès de la technologie, les flux de données du big data donnent naissance à de nouveaux services créateurs de valeur. Une étude portant sur 171 initiatives du monde entier décrypte la logique...

  • Business Transfer Ecosystem in France: Situation Analysis in 2015
    Published on 22 June 2016

    Business Transfer Ecosystem in France: Situation Analysis in 2015

    Every year, approximately 150,000 business transfers fail in Europe threatening some 600,000 jobs. BTAR's European project, launched in early 2015, aims to target the vulnerabilities in business transfer systems and draw on best practices in order...

  • Research: the impact of performance evaluations on an individual's network.
    Published on 22 April 2016

    Research: Positive Performance Evaluations Help Employees Develop Internal Networks

    Interactions are an essential part of any organization. Whether it is receiving help from colleagues or gaining access to crucial information, developing a strong internal network makes it easier for an employee to get things done. This latest study...

  • Research: the impact of performance evaluations on an individual's network.
    Published on 22 April 2016

    Recherche : Les salariés reconnus font prospérer leur réseau interne

    Un salarié dont le niveau de performance est reconnu par ses managers étend son réseau de contacts au sein de son entreprise et l'exploite davantage. Dans le cas contraire, il réduit le nombre de ses contacts. C'est la conclusion d'une étude sur 150...

  •  Thibault Daudigeos is a researcher in Sustainability, Corporate Social Reponsibility, Alternative forms of Organization, Sharing economy, and new models of management at Grenoble Ecole de Management.
    Published on 26 January 2016

    Recherche : Responsabilité sociale des entreprises globalisées, plus facile à dire qu’à faire

    Les démarches de Responsabilité sociale des entreprises (RSE) sont censées créer de la valeur. Pourtant, elles peinent à se mettre en place dans les secteurs où les chaînes de valeur sont éclatées : elles coûtent cher et ne profitent pas forcément à...

  • Published on 18 January 2016

    Refugees entering Europe: a positive impact on the economy ?

    The majority of European CFOs believe that refugees entering Europe will have a positive impact on the economy. Nearly 60 percent% of European CFOs believe that accepting migrants will help solve the looming demographic problems their nations face...

  • Published on 07 January 2016

    Baromètre du climat des affaires : l’optimisme se stabilise

    Nous rapportons dans ce document la perception du climat des affaires par les responsables financiers français et la comparons aux résultats obtenus en Europe et dans le reste du monde. Nous évaluons également les sources de risque pour l'entreprise...

  • Published on 04 January 2016

    Recherche : Produit d’origine locale, une mention qui parle au consommateur

    La mention « origine locale » apposée sur un produit alimentaire déclenche chez le consommateur des perceptions plus positives et une intention d'achat plus forte qu'un produit d'une autre région française. Trois études portant sur 632 consommateurs...

  • -	Projet CHESS – Connected Health Early Stage Researcher Support System
    Published on 08 September 2015

    Connected Health: the New Health Management Models

    Save lives and improve quality of living during and after treatment in the most cost-effective way: the promises of connected health are opening encouraging horizons for the future of healthcare systems. Connected health will contribute to creating...

  • -	Projet CHESS – Connected Health Early Stage Researcher Support System
    Published on 08 September 2015

    Santé connectée : les nouveaux modèles de management de la santé

    Sauver des vies, améliorer la qualité de vie pendant et après le traitement, le tout au meilleur prix : les promesses de la santé connectée ouvrent des horizons encourageants pour l’avenir des systèmes de santé. Elle contribuera à créer un...

  • Published on 07 September 2015

    Energy market barometer report: the development of energy prices

    The next Conference of Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP21) will take place in Paris from 30 November to 11 December. The Paris Climate Summit, announced as one of the biggest climate negotiations in history,...

  • Published on 03 July 2015

    Making a success of your business transfer: new tools developed for a European project

    Every year, approximately 150,000 business transfers fail in Europe threatening some 600,000 jobs. BTAR's European project, launched in early 2015, aims to target the vulnerabilities in business transfer systems and draw on best practices in order...

  • Mark Olsthoorn, professor and researcher at Grenoble Ecole de Mangement
    Published on 07 April 2015

    Recherche : Effacement de consommation électrique, pourquoi les industriels hésitent

    En acceptant de réduire leur consommation électrique lors de pics de demande, les industriels faciliteraient l'équilibrage des réseaux de distribution. Or, ils ont de solides arguments pour ne pas jouer la carte de la flexibilité. Une étude les...