Digital Acumen is part of Ipseita Limited, a technology solutions company established in 2017 with a focus on blockchain and AI technologies needed for a self-sovereign identity solution. Its learning and development activities started in 2018 after a university approached us to design and develop an MSc in data science targeted at business, especially those associated with financial services. Digital Acumen followed, partly due to the realisation that leaders, entrepreneurs, planners, and the like did not need to become techies to become good at rapidly making sound decisions about emerging technology.
The business is led by emeritus professor Mark Woodman, a computer scientist, and award-winning educator and pioneer of e-learning, and Philip Greenwood, an engineer and systems consultant who has worked across the world on digital solutions for complex organisations. Because of our work with learners and clients (a total of 80 years’ worth) we saw an urgent need to help leaders develop true digital thinking and to help them form habits of keeping on top of change. With fast-evolving, paradigm-forming digital technology now driving change, the goal of the courses is to help participants make sense of emerging tech – what is ready now and will be here soon – and so be able to fully exploit it.
We have coined the phrase Digital First for the hyper-novel era everybody is now in, and we have developed an approach for learners called Technosocial Sensemaking to match the challenges of this era.The courses are a mixture covering the general analytical skills development needed for decision quality, technology-based courses on digital change, and courses focused on business sectors. We have also built two LMS platforms, one to support the andragogy-cum-heutagogy approach for Digital Acumen, and another for a client to support large-scale coaching and mentoring. As well as our own Digital Acumen courses we have consulted with clients on leadership development programmes and their design, both from learning and digital technology perspectives.