Digital badges as a credentialing tool may force us to re-think and redesign education, especially for emerging fields such as social innovation.
So how do digital badges work? Unlike traditional academic degrees that tend to communicate what subject you studied and where you studied it, most digital badges are more granular in scope. They point to specific knowledge and skills you’ve acquired, and in most cases, demonstrated. For example, instead of going to a reputable business school and leveraging that institution’s MBA to get a job, you would earn a series of badges that would demonstrate your business acumen—such as your mastery of business model canvas, Lean Startup, and customer development. Your school—or any school for that matter—doesn’t need to issue the badges itself; the badges simply need to come from a trusted source that can certify your competencies.