Our living lab is based on a multiple-impact social partnership (MISP) model and is essentially an integration of the Research and Development model described below that has governed our applied research activities in education technology, and a community engagement model when members involved in the Living Lab established a non-governmental organisation through an entity called Helping Our People. It is based on Whitehead’s (2012) education research philosophy for social change through action research and the Living lab paradigm for Teaching and Learning (Conruyt 2013).
The Microsoft PIL program is managed by the Microsoft Indian Ocean and French Pacific branch, based in Mauritius and the aim is to promote the integration and the use of information and communication technologies in the classroom, with the main focus on the primary and secondary education sectors. The PIL network provides educators with ongoing training and free tools as well as access to a broad range of technologies and lesson plans to improve classroom practices. This is in line with the very essence of the article of Moon (2010) based on the belief that “education and training should be an entitlement for all teachers at all stages in their careers” and that research has demonstrated that when “this entitlement is honored, learners achieve more and schools improve”. The rapid e-learning methodology relies intensively on Microsoft PowerPoint as the prototyping and development workbench. This methodology with the ability of the team to cascade it down to educators to empower them to develop their own learning materials has prompted Microsoft to fund the training of an initial 50 educators on the technique in 2012.