The Vision

For more than a decade the creation and use of Open Educational Resources (OER) has been increasing around the globe. The OER World Map collects and visualizes data on the growing number of actors and activities in the field of open education worldwide. The goal is to accelerate the evolution of the global OER ecosystem by providing a comprehensive and responsive picture of the OER movement. The information provided can be used for a wide range of purposes, including:

  • connecting actors with each other facilitating co-operation and sharing of resources and knowledge
  • providing qualified lists of repositories and other OER services to help teachers and learners find educational resources relevant to them
  • supporting policy makers in taking and defending strategic decisions by providing meaningful statistics and overviews of the open education movement and its associated impacts

The OER World Map is intended to provide the information needed to support the self-organization processes of the OER movement. In addition to mapping relevant organisations, projects, people and services, the platform provides social networking, allows the identification of OER collections, and supports decision making. Taken together, the OER World Map can be seen as a kind of ‘operations room’ for the open education community.

The OER World Map is being built by hbz and graphthinking GmbH in association with The Open University (UK) funded by The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation. But it belongs to the global OER community. With input and intelligence from local sources and a global network of partners and volunteers, the OER World Map will be built and updated – a resource for all.

hbz graphthinkingGmbH The Open University The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation

To the extent possible under law, hbz has waived all copyright and related or neighboring rights to OER World Map data. CC0


Philipp von Böselager (Back-End Developer)

Philipp von Böselager Philipp (@boesephil on Twitter) is a Java backend developer in the field of Computational Linguistics (CL). After having worked with search engines, parsers, neural networks and speech synthesis in the course of his CL studies at the University of Cologne he went on to gain general IT experience at a German Java focused company. Later on he worked as a backend developer in an eDiscovery company, finally heading for the open minded spirit of the University-related HBZ again. He is deeply convinced of the WWW to serve for the common welfare and therefore being open and truly loves to work on a project he severely identifies with.

Karin Driesen (Online Editor)

Karin Driesen Karin started to work for the OER World Map at hbz in spring 2016 as online editor. Before this she worked for the German office of O’Reilly Media, a computer book publisher known for supporting the open source community. She has studied two extremely different subjects: German literature and geoecology. These subjects were related to different ways of studying: reading and writing on your own studying literature and working together as a team by sharing all resources with your fellow geoecology students. Getting material written by other people, refine it and pass it on to the following students was much like the OER way. She wants to move ahead on this way and help people to find useful and reusable information.

Dr. Robert Farrow (Project Communications)

Dr. Robert Farrow Robert (@philosopher1978 on Twitter) is an interdisciplinary open education researcher at the Open University, UK who acts as one of the research leads for OER Research Hub and leads the development of OER Impact Map. He has many years of experience in curating and visualizing data about OER activity and discourse, primarily in the Hewlett funded OLnet and OER Research Hub projects. His input to the project will focus on generating authentic use cases for the OER Map as well as acting as a conduit for outreach and awareness-building in the OER community.

Felix Link Felix joined the project in October 2015, being the UI-/frontend-designer of the OER World Map. He studied graphic and communication design from 2006 to 2012. Since 2008 he has been working as a freelance designer for both agencies and own clients, developing and implementing projects in corporate, editorial and web design. He is interested in design as a conceptual and integrated process as well as a characteristic expression of its content.

Jan Neumann (Project Management)

Jan Neumann Jan (@trugwaldsaenger on Twitter) is working as head of legal affairs and organisation at hbz. He studied law, economy and systems thinking and has more than 10 years of experience within (international) project management for different publishing houses and libraries. His story with OER began 2012 when he saw Susan D’Antoni presenting her vision of an OER World Map at the World OER Congress in Paris. Jan is a member of the educational advisory board of the German UNESCO chapter, frequently speaks at conferences and blogs about OER on

Felix Ostrowski (Technical Lead)

Felix Ostrowski Felix (@literarymachine on Twitter) acts as hbz’s partner in this project. He is a web engineer, Linked Data technologist and knowledge management consultant who has been on the web since the mid-’90s. After graduating in communication studies and computer science he worked as a software developer and repository manager at hbz from 2008 – 2010. He was also a driving force behind the institution’s Linked Open Data (LOD) strategy. In 2010 he moved on to work as a research assistant in a joint project on digital long term preservation of the The Berlin School of Library and Information Science, Stanford University Libraries and the German National Library. Since 2013 Felix is the founder and managing director of Berlin based graphthinking GmbH.

Adrian Pohl (Metadata & General Support)

Adrian Pohl Adrian (@acka47 on Twitter) has been working at the hbz since 2008. He is the metadata and RDF vocabulary expert for the development of hbz`s linked open data service “lobid” and also responsible for the project management. He has been actively promoting open knowledge, web standards and the use of open source software in the international library community. Adrian initiated the establishment of a German-speaking working group for OER metadata within the Competence Center for Interoperable Metadata (KIM) of the German Initiative for Network Information (DINI).

Johannes Schnettker (Front-End Developer)

Johannes Schnettker Johannes is the front-end developer of the project. Together with Felix Link he also develops the underlying UI concepts. He works as a freelance web developer since 2003 and implemented projects for a huge variety of clients and agencies. Lately he focussed on building UI functionalities and responsive layouts. Johannes studied computer- and communication science and is passionate about the intersections between the technical and conceptional aspects of his work.

Former Member of our Team

Ben Buschfeld (Design)

Ben Buschfeld Ben has been the frontend-designer of the project until December 2015. He studied communication design from 1990-1994 and is working on the web and digital media since 1995, when he wrote the initial draft and subsequently acted as the art director and project manager of the B2B-platform After the launch 1997 he teached as a visiting professor for information design at UDLA in Mexico and founded his own studio – graphic and interface design in Berlin. Since then he developed a number of publications, corporate identity programs, websites, information portals, and graphical user interfaces – working for clients from various industries, cultural and political institutions. His design work and public engagement was frequently awarded.

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