IFAD synthesis project: Augmenting Strategy Options

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Summary

KM4Dev Core Group is calling for proposals, from individuals or small groups of people, to contribute ideas, experiences and models that could help us develop strategy options for KM4Dev. We will award between five and ten mini-grants of up to $2,000 each for work that can be carried out during December, and largely completed by the end of 2013.

This, rather long, email summarises the ideas behind the call, outlines the criteria for selection and a simple process to be followed

Introduction

We are moving onto the final pieces of IFAD funded work for KM4Dev. This last piece focuses on developing strategy options for KM4Dev. Importantly, we in KM4Dev are the ones that need set the strategy. As always, it’s not something that can be outsourced. So John Smith is building on his first piece of work - in which he tied together the three main studies already carried out in the project (they are collected here) - and developing a range of options for us to consider in the New Year. John will be drawing on his work with us, his experience of being a KM4Dev member and his long background in online community facilitation.

The KM4Dev Core Group is coordinating this process and we want to widen the range of ideas that make up the options document. So we have a small amount of unallocated money in the IFAD grant that we want to use to involve actively some other members in this process. Therefore we are calling for proposals, from individuals or small groups of people, to contribute ideas, experiences and models that could help us develop the strategy options paper.

We will award 3 - 5 mini-grants of up to $2,000 each for work that can be carried out during December, and largely completed by the end of 2013. We are seeking contributions that:

  • come from existing members of the community
  • contribute to the ongoing resources that are available in KM4Dev
  • represent a divergent perspective or one that is different from what has been included so far in the IFAD funded studies project
  • will be shared or disseminated in such a way as to reach or involve as many KM4Dev people as possible

We are aware that several themes are significant, so suggest that if possible contributions touch on them one way or another on them:

  • KM4Dev Governance

  • Sustainability
 of KM4Dev
  • KM4Dev leadership and succession
  • KM4Dev infrastructure
 (technology and otherwise)
  • Building value for the community

 (KM4Dev and beyond)

These themes are broad, and while we do not wish to limit applications it might help if we list four ideas that have come up so far:

Develop a KM4Dev technology platform map and document the benefits and steps involved in participating in each one. Based on existing practice, developing guidelines for moving contributions from one setting to another (e.g., documenting discussion summaries on the Wiki) would flesh out the platform map. The proposal that KM4Dev could be “a service not a community” has come up in discussions about KM4Dev over the years. It garnered the highest score in the All Our Ideas wiki survey as a topic of research and it has been opened as a topic of discussion. The idea deserves discussion in the context of community funding models, provided there is an adequate language to consider community activity requirements as well. Otherwise, the connection between funding and activity gets confused or lost. The inquiry could include:

  1. Identifying what parts of KM4Dev are fundable vs suitable for volunteers, surfacing criteria for that identification and describing examples
    1. Define options for revenue generation
    2. Describe the ramifications of alternative strategies
  2. Developing and engaging another “perspective”: in particular we are asking what contributions KM4Dev could make to the world on topics that have not traditionally been part of our conversation,and how we might engage with other communities. Possible topics could include:
    1. Climate change
    2. Humanitarian response
    3. Professional development more broadly
  3. Stories of change: a story or extended anecdote from someone whose life has been changed by KM4Dev could enrich this process. This could take the form of a narrative, or a graphic, illustrating main milestones (e.g. events, contributions, conversations) in a journey through KM4Dev and showing how that engagement has contributed inspiration or confidence or learning, both personally and in terms of wider impact. To be useful in a strategy the story would need to highlight what has worked well, what could be improved, and how KM4Dev could evolve to meet more exactly your own specific context.

Process:

Please submit a one page (maximum) expression of interest by Monday December 9th (12 midday GMT) to John Smith at John.Smith@LearningAlliances.net. You will be advised of the award by Wednesday December 11th. Here are the details explaining the criteria that will be used in selection of grantees:

  1. Limited to individuals who have previously registered on the Dgroups, Ning, or Wiki platforms.
  2. Results in an artifact that can be shared on the Ning or Wiki platforms (one or more pages or blog posts that can serve as record of the contribution).
  3. Represents the views from a person who has a unique role, works in a unique setting, or brings a background that offers a contrast with those that been included so far in the IFAD funded studies project and illustrates how a different or altered approach could advance KM4Dev.
  4. Will be shared or disseminated in an event, a conversation, or some other interaction that makes it accessible to as many KM4Dev people as possible. The ideal would be one of the “Focused Conversations” in KM4Dev during January or February of 2014.