Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Information and knowledge intermediaries step forward

More and more information and communication professionals, certainly in development settings, find themselves running portals, gateways, resource centres and one-stop shops. More than just providing information access, these efforts aim to bridge information gaps, make connections, and facilitate information exchanges among different people.

These people are sometimes called 'infomediaries.'

If you see yourself as one of these, or wonder what they are like, then a recent report from IDS brings together the outputs of a small meeting convened in early 2007. The discussions were rich and filled with diagrams and charts, some of which make it to the report. They were also supplemented with 'mobile discussions', when participants walked the IDS campus together - as the photos attest.

Participants came up with a number of challenges:
  • Identifying content and leveraging access to it
  • Setting and implementing editorial criteria
  • Promoting access whilst upholding copyright
  • Balancing neutrality and advocacy
  • Understanding and responding to changing external environments
  • Ensuring sustainability
  • Demonstrating impact.
Peter Ballantyne attended the meeting for Euforic. Recent discussions within the group suggest they will meet again, in South Africa in 2008.

See more Euforic resources on information, knowledge-sharing and communication

by Peter Ballantyne