Monday, December 01, 2008

Workshop: Web2.0 in development cooperation - Bonn, 27 and 28 November, 2008

After the success of last year's web 2.0 workshop and the positive feedback received from participants, the European Association of Development Research and Training Institutes (EADI) and Europe’s Forum on International Cooperation (Euforic) organised the second edition of the workshop 'Information, Knowledge and Communication - Web 2.0 in Development Co-operation'.

As last year we provided information and communication professionals in the development community with a up-to-date overview of the possibilities and the advantages that web 2.0 tools offer for their work.

Some of the buzzwords include “social bookmarking”, “RSS”, “wikis”, “blogs”, ‘Googling’ and “vlogging” - all are free to use and they provide numerous flexible solutions to the challenges we face.

This ‘web 2.0’ offers various ways to use these opportunities to improve and enhance the data and information management of your own organisation. Most of these offerings are completely free of charge. Used alone or in combinations, the new tools may revolutionize the way development information is created, accessed, shared, and used.

Our two-days workshop combined presentations from people who use the web 2.0 in their everyday work, with intensive guided ‘hands-on’ training.

Participants included both novices to the subject and more advanced users, who wanted to get more detailed know-how. Very interesting was the composition of the group, with a good mix of people coming from different development organisations, being research institutes like DIE and ZEF, development agencies like SDC, networks such as DDRN, and a various range of NGOs and civil society organisations.

The closing roundtable highlighted some of the lessons learned, and how participants started to think about possible use of different applications:

"Several of the tools we practiced with in the past two days seem ideal for running and supporting campaigning."

"I think that both blogs and wikis can offer a lot in terms of supporting our main website; I still need to figure out how exactly to proceed, but I really see potential."

"This training has been very useful, as it provided a broad overview of what's happening on the web and how development organisations are embracing these new tools. Personally, I'm not fully convinced that bloggging is effecient way to communicate, but all the other things we saw these days are very good for information and communication."

"Even if I was already familiar with some of the tools, this type of event allowed me to raise my level of confidence. It is important in fact to see how others are using the 'new' web in a professional way; in particular, I'm impress with the possibilities offered by wikis and RSS feeds. The difficult part will now be to get back to my organisation, and try to mobilize my colleagues!"

This workshop forms part of the Euforic web2share initiative that supports Euforic members in using the new web tools and services and working collectively.

See Euforic newsfeed, dossier and wiki on web 2.0.