Federal Department of Foreign Affairs FDFA Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation SDCCarmen Eckert (Learning and Networking Processes, Dgroups coordinator)Carsten Schulz (Agridea International, Administrator/facilitator of Dgroup « e+i network, PrivateSector Development discussion group »)16.04.2013Dgroups at SDC
Dgroups in the organizationWhen and how is Dgroups used? (Institutionalized) thematic networks communication Preparation of F2F events (Logistics and Contents) Thematic discussions and exchange about common practices Intra network communication and exchange among network facilitators Institutional informations Creation of ad-hoc discussion groups of two networksdGroups at SDC | Carmen Eckert/ Carsten Schulz 2
Dgroups in the organizationTrends and highlights Established tool A high satisfaction by dgroups users (before next.dgroups rather negative feedbacks) Trend to shorter and more spontaneaus messages -> work in progress; process orientation within networks Structured e-discussions as main use case -> Search for complementary instruments/innovationsdGroups at SDC | Carmen Eckert/ Carsten Schulz 3
Example - SDC Employment andIncome Network I SDC e+i network with 2 sub-groups: Private Sector Development discussion group + Vocational Skills Development discussion groupdGroups at SDC| Carmen Eckert/ Carsten Schulz 4
Structure of a thematic network atSDCdGroups at SDC | Carmen Eckert/ Carsten Schulz
Example - SDC Employment andIncome Network II Purpose info-channel (newsletter; messages) thematic exchange and discussion Membership SDC collaborators + practitioners; academia, consultants & think tanks Development goal learning improvement of development interventions sharing of good practicesdGroups at SDC| Carmen Eckert/ Carsten Schulz 7
Useful functionalities in Dgroups Mailing list function Overview of discussion group members Member profiles! Email directory! Archive of discussion posts Upload of relevant documents (send by users) StatisticsdGroups at SDC | Carmen Eckert/ Carsten Schulz
What’s unique about e+i networkDgroups? Mixture of internal SDC collaborators and external specialists from implementing partners, academia, think tanks and other NGOs Quite a big number of members (compared with other SDC Dgroups) Compliance by its members Trust by network focal point; focal point is not facilitating -> outsourcing to backstopping mandate A good team of online facilitators (backstopping mandate)dGroups at SDC | Carmen Eckert/ Carsten Schulz
How is the group managed?Moderated/non moderated? not censored -> Dgroups slang: non moderated - but facilitated ;-)Are messages curated/translated/re-purposed? 100% authentic; not censored mixed experiences with translated discussions discussion is synthesised not summarisedDoes the discussion group work in combination withother online/offline services? shared website of the e+i network other network website outside SDC (M4P hub, etc.)dGroups at SDC | Carmen Eckert/ Carsten Schulz
ReflectionsChallenges More efficient use of the profile function The IT environment at SDC and cooperation offices as such The future change on the IT environment at SDC and cooperation offices Suspicious thinking - Dgroups as tool: its from outside the federal admin system From multi-channel communication to a more focused communciation with maybe only 1 platformdGroups at SDC | Carmen Eckert/ Carsten Schulz 11
Take Away Message Usability for organizers/facilitators is key (and next.dgroups has improved) Outsorced resources for facilitationdGroups at SDC | Carmen Eckert/ Carsten Schulz 12
Questions for our Peers How do other groups practically use Dgroups? (e.g. online profiles; archive) How do you use Dgroups as community website?dGroups at SDC | Carmen Eckert/ Carsten Schulz 13
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