Fred Mulder Awards

We launched the GO-GN awards in 2017 to recognise and celebrate GO-GN member and alumni open practices and research in open education. In 2018 we renamed the awards to honour the founder of GO-GN, Professor Fred Mulder.

Award submissions are independently judged by an awards committee including the GO-GN team. We have previously celebrated our winners at OE Global in Delft (2018) and Galway (2019).

Best Open Education Research Paper


Aras Bozkurt for ‘Trends and Patterns in Distance Education (2014–2019): A Synthesis of Scholarly Publications and a Visualization of the Intellectual Landscape‘ co-authored with Olaf Zawacki-Richter and published in the International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning (IRRODL).


Amy Nusbaum for ‘Who Gets to Wield Academic Mjolnir?: On Worthiness, Knowledge Curation, and Using the Power of the People to Diversify OER‘ published in Journal of Interactive Media in Education (JIME).

Joint Runner Up: Ada Czerwonogora and Virginia Ródes for ‘Praxis: Open educational practices and open science to face the challenges of critical educational action research‘ published in Open Praxis.  

Joint Runner Up: Aras Bozkurt for ‘A global outlook to the interruption of education due to COVID-19 pandemic: Navigating in a time of uncertainty and crisis‘ published in Asian Journal of Distance Education.


Michael Paskevicius for ‘Conceptualizing open educational practices through the lens of constructive alignment‘, published in OpenPraxis.

Honourable Mention: Sarah Lambert for ‘Changing our (Dis)Course: A Distinctive Social Justice Aligned Definition of Open Education‘, published in the Journal of Learning for Development.


Glenda Cox for ‘Institutional Culture and OER Policy: How Structure, Culture, and Agency Mediate OER Policy Potential in South African Universities‘, co-authored with Henry Trotter and published in the International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning (IRRODL).

Honourable Mention: Aras Bozkurt for ‘Community Tracking in a cMOOC and Nomadic Learner Behavior Identification on a Connectivist Rhizomatic Learning Network‘, co-authored with Sarah Honeychurch, Autumn Caines, Maha Bali, Apostolos Koutropoulos and Dave Cormier, and published in the Turkish Online Journal of Distance Education (TOJDE).

Best Open Practice


Glenda Cox for the The Digital Open Textbooks for Development (DOT4D) project. 

“The DOT4D project embodies openness in all aspects of its research, implementation and advocacy activities; all of which aim to explore the social justice dimensions of open textbook production. This project, led by GO-GN alumna Dr Glenda Cox, was funded by the Canadian IDRC and is currently UCT funded and hoping to secure future funding. In its research processes, all instrumentation developed is published in repositories with extensive metadata. The project’s ‘Open Textbooks in South African Higher Education’ initiative aims to extend this open practice and reach beyond national borders. All DOT4D outputs are published via open access channels and released under a CC BY licence.”  


Joint winner: Tomohiro Nagashima

“My work looked at how education researchers and practitioners, such as teachers, can work together to design OER and to use them in meaningful and effective ways. In this project, we collaborated with middle-school teachers in US to design and use a visual representation for algebra. We shared our materials and tools widely as OER to promote evidence-based open educational practice. As an instructional designer turned into an education researcher, I deeply care about connecting research and practice in a sustainable way, and this project was the first step toward the goal of building an ecosystem in which education researchers and practitioners collaboratively engage in the design, reuse, and re-distribution of OER.”

Joint winner: Hélène Pulker

“In the context of the ongoing pandemic and its impact on education and educators around the world, a group of colleagues from the Open University School of Languages and Applied Linguistics has developed a free toolkit, ‘Moving your language teaching online’. The toolkit supports language teachers from other Higher Education institutions who are new to online teaching or have only recently had to adapt to online teaching in light of the Covid-19 situation. The toolkit consists of a series of help sheets, discussing the basic principles of online language teaching: from creating an online classroom to maintaining motivation or developing assessment strategies for online teaching. 

Since its launch on 30 October 2020, the toolkit website has attracted nearly 2,000 visits. Users are free to download the toolkit help sheets, to use them, modify and adapt them to their own context, or to translate them. They are encouraged to share them with colleagues from their institutions and beyond.

Toolkit project team: Zsuzsanna Bárkányi, Karina von Lindeiner-Stráský, Christine Pleines, Hélène Pulker, Elodie Vialleton, The School of Languages and Applied Linguistics, The Open University (UK)”


Caroline Kuhn


Chrissi Nerantzi

Special Award for Outstanding Open Educational Practice

Introduced in 2021 this new award aims to recognise the contributions of researchers, experts and friends working in open education.


Leo Havemann and the Understanding data: praxis and politics team.

“The project team designed, developed and piloted a collection of OER to support educators in improving their critical data literacies and building related pedagogic capacity. The resources provide educators with content and analytical tools to think about real-life situations that will connect them with the most recent issues and research in the field. The resources were used in locally-focused pilot events and courses, in collaboration with local leads in Kenya, Uruguay, the UK, and Spain. The project therefore innovatively combines OER and OEP to produce negotiated, locally relevant learning experiences to provoke participants’ further reflection, research and transformation of practice.”

Team: Caroline Kuhn H., Javiera Atenas, Leo Havemann, Cristian Timmerman and Juliana Raffaghelli