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Facilitating Communities of Practice in the Network Era Nancy White Full Circle Associates

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Presentation on theme: "Facilitating Communities of Practice in the Network Era Nancy White Full Circle Associates"— Presentation transcript:

1 Facilitating Communities of Practice in the Network Era Nancy White Full Circle Associates

2 Note to Slide Viewers: This set of slides contains both the slides we used at our May 17th, 2010 workshop, along with some other slides you may find useful. But we sure didn't talk about them! Nancy

3 Lets build some mud maps (from Shawn Callahan –

4 A Community of Practice Perspective

5 #1 People Forms (me, we, network)

6 Go Solo?

7 Pairs, triads and very small groups –

8 Fly with the flock? Research teams...

9 South Africa's community nest spider

10 Roam the network?

11 Networked Individualism Barry Wellman

12 Many: Networks We: Communities Me: the Individual Personal identity, interest & trajectory Bounded membership; group identity, shared interest, human centered Boundaryless; fuzzy, intersecting interests, object centered sociality (Engeström)

13 Many: Networks We: Communities Me: the Individual Consciousness, confidence level, risk tolerance, styles, emotionC Distinct power/trust dynamics, shared forward movement or strong blocking, stasis, attention to maintenance, language Flows around blocks, less cohesion, distributed power/trust, change

14 Many: Networks We: Communities Me: the Individual Blogs, email, research portfolios, RSS readers, the Brain… Forums, wikis, group blogs, content mgmt systems, LMS, platforms… Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Wikipedia,etc…

15 purpose exercise PURPOSE! What is the purpose of your community/group? Community Checklist

16 #2 Emerging roles and practices…

17 …being a leader means providing a space for other people to find the truth about themselves. The leader is the person who creates the space, or the opportunity, where some truth can shine forth and where the people who inhabit the space can find themselves at the deepest level. Fred Kofman

18 Rule of Thumb: Make way for teenaged elephants!

19 enable people to… discover & appropriate useful technology be in and use communities & networks (people) express their identity find and create content usefully participate

20 facilitators community leaders technology stewards network weavers Independent thinkers

21 Thanks! Nancy White

22 Online Facilitation (STUFF we DID NOT USE but which you might find useful...)

23 Facilitating Online Interaction: Whats It All About, Anyway? Nancy White, Full Circle Associates cc 2007


25 2. Online Communications Nancy White, Full Circle Associates, cc 2007

26 Bumblebee time...

27 Nancy White, Full Circle Associates, cc 2007 tortise time...

28 / "To receive everything, one must open one's hands and give Taisen Deshimaru 3. Learning Together Nancy White, Full Circle Associates, cc 2007

29 4. Facilitation Me: Identity/Reputation /Presence Us: Relationship Benefit: Process Nancy White, Full Circle Associates, cc 2007

30 From: moderating/fivestep.htm Gilly Salmon moderating/fivestep.htm

31 Identity/Presence Relationship Process Benefit Nancy White, Full Circle Associates, cc 2007

32 Convening Conversations Invite Focus Questions Control emergence Feed Nancy White, Full Circle Associates, cc 2007

33 5. Intercultural Antennae …including professional culture Nancy White, Full Circle Associates, cc 2007

34 6. Tolerance for AmBiguitY Move forward without certainty Nancy White, Full Circle Associates, cc 2007

35 7. Bridge & Connect Multi- membership Connectors Networkers Multiple perspectives Nancy White, Full Circle Associates, cc 2007

36 ODI: 6 Network Functions Filters Amplifyers Convenors Facilitators Investors Community builders

37 8. Technical Skills Know enough Be curious Experiment Have friends Nancy White, Full Circle Associates, cc 2007

38 Finally…1. Self-Awareness Nancy White, Full Circle Associates, cc 2007

39 A Systems View of Community Facilitation (STUFF WE DID NOT USE)

40 1. Work with the whole system

41 Source: Keith McCandless


43 Who needs to be in the room to make this happen? Catalysts and connectors

44 From David Wilcox

45 2. Identify and build on assets.



48 3. Engage the system in the learning

49 We learn from each other. We learn when we do.

50 Participation Practices Open Space ( World Café ( Positive Deviance Storytelling …and many, many more

51 Keep it simple Keep technology simple, relevant, and local Build on what is there and being used Involve users in the design Strengthen capacity Introduce greater monitoring & evaluation, especially participatory approaches. Include communication strategies. Research and share learning about what works, and what fails.

52 4. Find where we can do the most as leaders.

53 Do we…. –let it happen? –help it happen? –make it happen?

54 What are some mud maps we can think about today? What conditions might we create for these learning patterns and relationships?

55 Background Stuff on Communities of Practice WHICH WE DID NOT USE

56 A Communities of Practice Lens: What can it show us? Nancy White Full Circle Associates

57 A Community of Practice Perspective

58 Distributed CoPs: Benefits? Bullish? Potential for diversity Border/boundary spanning Multi-modal Accumulate Artifacts Complex

59 Challenges Diffuse attention Diverse intention Fuzzier identity Invisible boundaries Lurking

60 What is a CoP? Why care? CoPs develop around things that matter to people…. The difference between a CoP and a team is that the shared learning and interest of its members are what keeps it together. It is defined by knowledge rather than task. It exists because participation has value to members. In their teams, they take care of projects. In their networks, they form relationships. In their CoPs they develop the knowledge that lets them do these other tasks Etienne Wenger, 1998

61 Some Comparisons As long as interest remains Informal network Friends and acquaintances Collect & pass on information Mutual needs, friendship As long as reason to connect exists Etienne Wenger 2003

62 CoPs and Social Networks Nurturing/preserving/ the social capital created by an educational or work experience Embedding the results of training in new work practicePERF PPEERRFFORMANCEORMANCEPPEERRFFORMANCEORMANCE Purpose S OCIAL F ORMATION PRACTICE

63 Is the distinction between a CoP, team or other form relevant to your situation? A = Yes B = No C = Lets talk about this more!

64 A Community of Practice Perspective: Domain

65 Domain: Shared Interest; Purpose What are we about? What is our identity? Significance? – Organization – individual Scope? Learning and doing

66 What is Purpose? A purpose is a social invention. It is constructed out of the intentions of the people in interaction with their environment. Purpose is the meaning of the group's existence. Purpose is the intended impact of the groups actions (or non-action) on the world. Jon C. Jenkins Imaginal Training, Groningen, The Netherlands

67 Practical Purpose Points Is it clear? Is it sharable? Is it inviting? Organization individual Is it reasonable? Is it negotiable?

68 Does your community have a clear purpose? A = Absolutely B = Maybe not C = Nope!

69 A Community of Practice Perspective: Community

70 What is a community ? A set of people (or agents in a more abstract sense) with some shared element…a group of people or things that live in the same area. The substance of shared element varies widely, from a situation to interest to lives and values. The term is widely used to evoke sense of collectivity. unity unity

71 …in a CoP sense? Who is involved? What roles? What relationships? How do they interact to solve problems & answer questions? How is engagement and trust fostered?

72 Keys to Community Interaction Control Emergence Translucent design Transparent facilitation Surface values & agreements

73 Social Translucence Vital tension between privacy and visibility. Erickson The door with the glass window Visibility Awareness Accountability

74 Translucent Systems Balance of public and private spaces Balance of push/pull of information Clarity on decision making authority & processes Shared goals, but often individual work

75 Norms, Agreements & Accountability What is the minimum? How explicit? How to make visible? How to keep them alive? What shared values underpin?

76 Legitimate Peripheral Participation Picture courtesy of Lave&Wenger, 1991 In the workplace, learners can, when they need, steal their knowledge from the social periphery made up of other, more experienced workers and ongoing, socially shared practice. (Brown&Duguid, 1992)

77 Leadership online? Servant leaders Lead by action & example More explicit than offline Perhaps more process- focuses Hold the space Shared Tolerant of ambiguity

78 A Community of Practice Perspective: Practice

79 Practice Domain-related practice What knowledge matters? What activities Needed? What tools? Meta-practice of being a CoP Meta-practice of a distributed CoP DOMAIN Practice Being in a CoP Practice Distributed

80 The place between the spaces What practices enhance community formation &thriving? How does practice show up online and offline? What is the tolerance for risk & experimentation?

81 The Power of Conversation Yearn for pub or coffee shop Social conversation (ad hoc, unstructured, no explicit focus) Scientific discussion (topically organized, structured around data & hypothesis) Blend of both Time issues

82 Collaboration Whole greater than parts Derived from purpose and outcomes Principles determine behaviors Based on honest assessments Ownership and commitment Inclusive Martin Leith

83 Inquiry Define the problem Develop and evaluation solution alternatives Come to some resolution Develop a plan of action Reflect on the process

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