Keynote Speakers
 Keynote 1

Dr. Andy Van Schaack

Vanderbilt University, USA

AvS picture.pngDr. Andy Van Schaack is a professor at Vanderbilt University with appointments in the Peabody College of Education and the School of Engineering. He teaches courses in social science research methods, judgment and analytical reasoning, attribute development, and technology forecasting. He founded and served as Chief Scientist for several Silicon Valley-based companies where he earned over a dozen patents on educational technologies. In 2017, he was the recipient of the Madison Sarratt Prize for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching (Vanderbilt University's teacher of the year award). In 2018, he was named an honorary midshipman by the Vanderbilt University Naval ROTC unit, and in the spring of 2022, he served as a Fulbright U.S. Scholar to Austria.

Using Psychology to Inform the Use of AI in Education and Training

In his presentation, Dr. Van Schaack will explore the intersection of instructional psychology and artificial intelligence in educational and training environments. The core premise is the necessity of aligning the use of technology, specifically AI, with well-defined instructional objectives and associated methods to achieve them. Grounded in empirical research, he will explain how psychological principles such as retrieval practice, spaced practice, and elaboration can significantly enhance learning. The talk will emphasize the importance of using AI not as a standalone tool, but as a means to implement these psychological principles through student-friendly instructional activities. By leveraging AI in this manner, educators can design instruction that will enhance the acquisition, retention, and transfer of knowledge and skills.

The presentation aims to provide a framework for educators to thoughtfully integrate AI in their teaching practice, ensuring that its application is driven by evidence-based principles of psychology.

 Keynote 2

Carl Heath

Senior researcher, Sweden

Carl-Heath.jpgI’m Carl Heath, a 48-year-old senior researcher and focus leader for Digital Resilience at RISE and a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Gothenburg’s Department of Applied IT. I also work with the Swedish Psychological Defence Agency on research and education. In 2018, I was appointed by the government as Special Counsel to lead a national initiative on media and information literacy and to safeguard democratic discourse, culminating in a report submitted to the government in fall 2020.

My research, part of the Digital Governance graduate school at the Swedish Center for Digital Innovation (SCDI), explores the significance of leadership and political organization in the context of public sector innovation and transformation. I am interested in democracy in the digital age and issues related to innovation, resilience, civil protection, and total defense.

Before starting at RISE, I worked with the Swedish Armed Forces, Riksteatern, Sverok, the National Council of Swedish Youth Organizations (LSU), and Technohuman AB. I spent over a decade at GR (Gothenburg Region Association of Local Authorities), where I founded GR Experience-Based Learning (now part of the Pedagogical Centre) and led the Department of Educational Collaboration and the High School Admissions Office.

I studied social and political science, earning a master’s in applied information technology from the University of Gothenburg. I was among the first global cohort of Internet Society Fellows, studying internet knowledge, geopolitics, strategic foresight, systems, service design, and leadership at institutions including Sciences Po and Oxford Internet Institute.

My full CV can be found at LinkedIn.

Dynamics of the world's ongoing digital transformation and its relationship to education and innovation management.

In his presentation, Carl Heath, a senior researcher at RISE – Research Institutes of Sweden, will delve into the dynamics of the world's ongoing digital transformation and its relationship to education and innovation management. He will emphasize how this digital metamorphosis is reshaping the very fabric of our society, with a significant focus on the evolution of education. As education undergoes profound changes due to digital influences, Mr. Heath will explore the consequential shifts in the context of how to enable innovation in educational organizational contexts.

Central to his talk will be the discussion on the necessity for new frameworks of thought and innovative processes, especially crucial in managing change and fostering innovation during these turbulent times. He will argue that there is a need for an ambidextrious management practice. The adoption of novel frameworks that are flexible, adaptable, and forward-thinking is essential for staying relevant and effective. Furthermore, Mr. Heath will outline how innovation management practices can be instrumental in these scenarios. These practices, he proposes, are key to enabling the implementation of novel educational innovations. He will provide insights into how institutions, educators, and policymakers can leverage these practices to navigate and lead in the ever-changing landscape of digital transformation. By integrating innovation management into the core strategy of educational systems, Mr. Heath will argue, we can not only cope with the challenges of the present but also proactively prepare for the future.

 Keynote 3

Ms. Hillery Hommes

Ministry of Defence, the Netherlands

HkeHommes.pngMs. Hommes MSc is an educational scientist, currently working for the Dutch Royal Army in the position of Commander / Head of the Centre of Expertise Digital Learning. Ms. Hommes is described as progressive, enthusiastic and resolute. In 2018 she graduated in the area of Educational Sciences (MSc) from the University of Utrecht, The Netherlands. The past years, she dedicated her time to the modernization and innovation of Education and Training (E&T) in the military context. She contributed to this field, nationally as a manager of an E&T innovation program as well as internationally in (in)formal working groups (with either a European or a NATO scope). In september 2023 she was elected as the co-chair of the NATO Individual Training & Education Working Group.

Ms. Hommes has a focus on change management within a highly technological world – a world wherein knowledge becomes more and more elusive and dynamic. To enhance modernization and innovation within the military context, she cooperates with a broad network of both commercial stakeholders regarding digital learning as well as the NATO Advanced Distributed Learning network.

ADL in times of crises: Are we fit for the future?

During the conference, Ms. Hommes MSc will highlight different generations of learners combined with an changing world where getting ánd being ready is key, changes in warefare and current developments like Artifical Intelligence. With a critical but creative mindset, she will give insight in the lessons we learned over the past years: highlighting the COVID-period but also the lessons learned of ADL in War. She will give her motivational perspective on the way ahead in the world of digital learning within the military context answering the question: Are we Fit for the Future?

pdficon.png Download presentation   Online presentation

Learning Science


Michael-Cherinet.jpgMajor General (AF)
Michael Cherinet

Current Assignment

2023 – Head of Directorate for Capability & Finance, Defence Staff, Swedish Armed Forces HQ.

Head of Swedish Armed Forces Training and Education.




Rickard-Weman.pngLieutenant Colonel (AF)
Rickard Weman

Current Assignment

2024 – Co Armed Forces Leadership and Pedagogy Development Unit.  
Military Academy Halmstad

Lieutenant Colonel Rickard Weman is commanding officer of the Armed Forces Leadership and Pedagogy Development Unit in Halmstad, Sweden.

He is an Airforce officer with several years of experience in commanding on different levels in the Swedish Armed Forces. He received his Degree of Master of Science in War studies from the Swedish Defence College in Stockholm 2020. His unit is responsible for organizing the NORDEFCO ADL Conference in Sweden this year. 


Keynote speakers: 45 mins.
Speakers (Auditorium): 30 mins.
Parallel sessions: 40 mins.
Workshops: 2x40 mins. or
Workshop: 90 mins.


Networking in every Coffee break