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Peer-to-peer learning, so what?

When I first heard of E-180, I didn’t know what peer-to-peer learning was, and now only 3 months later, I’m editing a magazine that’s sole purpose is to explore the topic. What happened?

What happened is I met Christine, founder and CEO of E-180, and hopefully you’ll also get to meet her, in person, to hear her enthusiasm about her dream – trust me it’s contagious. But until then, we’ve started the E-180 Magazine to share our learnings with all you, as we explore the topic. We’ll be looking at the advantages of peer-to-peer learning, its shortcomings, talking to people at the source of the movement, and seeing how knowledge is shared in the different spheres of our lives.

Peer-to-peer learning is part of the sharing economy which is quickly changing our relationship to consumption. Four years ago we would have thought that renting a strangers house for a week instead of renting a hotel was crazy talk. Crazier even was the thought of renting your own house to a stranger if you happen to be out of town for a day or two. Now we have Airbnb, and we can’t imagine planning a trip without it as an option.There are hundreds of other examples of companies that help us coordinate to share our resources with each other, including  The Center for Social Innovation, Yerdle, Car2Go and many more.

Learning from peers in our networks happens daily and organically, but we remain limited by the breadth of our networks, just like without Airbnb, we can only stay at friends’ houses, who sadly may not have a house in Marrakesh. Can we benefit from a system of peer-to-peer learning that will give us access to knowledge beyond our own networks?

Is the logic for sharing a physical object so fundamentally different from sharing an intangible object that it just can’t work?  Or is it us, have we simply not wrapped our brains around the idea of a collaborative learning system? And if so, what is the catalyst that will make it click?

Is peer-to-peer learning the next big thing?

Your excited and nervous with anticipation editor,


E-180 | Labs‘ mission is to transform events, spaces and organisations into peer-learning hubs, through what we call Brain Dates. Learn how here!