It’s good to see plenty of new content being added to the Voicebox blog – the home of the UK online centres and Citizens Online bid for the CLG digital mentor fund.
For example, Mike Amos-Simpson on ‘What is Open Collaboration?‘:
I find the idea of developing and running a programme in the open very attractive for lots of reasons. There’s a sense of it being more ‘honest’, there’s the opportunity that even if you’re not directly involved you can contribute, there’s a degree of accountability with people allowed to freely add their views, and of course there’s the potential to bring on board a far wider range of expertise than you could with a traditional closed collaboration.
And Gail Bradbrook on ‘Research and Mapping Objectives‘:
I think we need to develop an open and flowing process, so that we get as much quality information as possible to understand the types of projects that exist, why they exist (what drives them) and what the benefits are as well as disadvantages in the process, in particular focused on sustainability. What we can learn that is good for training others and what training needs may exist. What else do people think we need to find out?
If you would like to add your voice to the, er, box then just get in touch with email@example.com!
I am enjoying helping with the Voicebox bid for the CLG digital mentor project: those involved like Helen, Anne and Ben from UK online centres are so enthusiastic and eager for the open, collaborative approach they are taking to succeed.
Here’s a video of Helen Milner talking about the Voicebox bid:
As part of the tendering process, all interested parties had to submit an expression of their interest to CLG to advance to the next stage. Voicebox has done just that, and what’s more, they have posted the content of their EoI on their blog! Great work!
Also on the blog, Voicebox are keen for people to post their thoughts on digital mentoring, whether in their big picture thread, or by adding thoughts about any of the work packages that have been identified so far. This can be done by leaving comments on existing posts – which quite a few people have started to do already – or by contacting the team using firstname.lastname@example.org to write a whole new post.
Here’s a second video, which features, from left to right, Paul Henderson of Ruralnet, me, and Nick Booth. We’re talking somewhat disruptively about whether digital mentors would be better off without CLGs money… it’s all David Wilcox‘s fault, who was encouraging us to be naughty.
Anyway, part of the reason I included this video is for the benefit of readers of this blog who haven’t met me yet and who assume I am significantly older than I am. It happens a lot.
I have just come back from a meetup in Birmingham of folk interested in the Digital Mentor concept and how we can all collaborate on a bid. I got to meet some great people for the first time, and catch up with some familiar faces.
Also present was Ben Brown from UK Online Centres, who had travelled from Bristol for the meeting. Great effort on his part, and also to UKOC for having the gumption to send one of their people to a pub in Birmingham to chat about working together with a bunch of strangers!
Anne Faulkner from OKOC has now posted a great comment on the Digital Mentor blog, sketching out how they see an open, collaborative bid, in co-operation with other organisations like Citizens Online and Ruralnet, working.
UK online centres and Citizens Online know this approach isn’t the easy option, but we figured that if we want to deliver a project about partnership and online collaboration, we should try to put it into practice as part of the bidding process. We think we need both breadth and depth in this project, and we’re interested in developing a framework which enables a range of organisations and individuals to share their expertise.
I’m looking forward to seeing how this develops, and getting involved where I can!
A few new pages have been created on the Digital Mentor wiki which are screaming out for content to be added, and it’s really easy to do so!
All you have to do to add to the wiki is click the ‘edit’ link on the relevant page, and then type in the site-wide password, which is printed on the top left of every page. No need to create an account, or think up a password to remember!
The pages that are open for contributions right now are:
- What is a digital mentor? – Give your thoughts on what you see as being the important parts of the digital mentor role
- Links – list where you have seen web pages and blog posts about digital mentors, or related stuff
- Online tools – where have you seen online resources which could be used either by digital mentors, or by those mentoring the mentors?
If you don’t like using wikis, you can still contribute! Leave your thoughts in the comments here, or email them to me, and I will do the wiki bit.