Examples of Effective Communities of Practice/Knowledge Networks


These are various online communities of practice/knowledge networks that, altogether, provide good examples of the variety of ways such communities can look and "feel".

Text-based communities via email or web:


Online Facilitation
An online community on YahooGroups for people that facilitate/moderate online discussion groups, including communities of practice

Top 24 Communities for the Community Manager
by Jenn Pedde, at thecommunitymanager.com

Generator School Network
A community of schools "committed to best practices in service-learning"

Library Society of the World
A community of people working in, or concerned with, libraries. The community is on FriendFeed.

Thought Leadership for Business -
This provides a good example of the many features an online learning community can have.

ACES Community, a Community of Practice on Ecosystem Services, on Twitter.

UKVPMs -
This is an online community via YahooGroups for people in the UK working with volunteers. It has been around for several years.

OZVPM
This is an online community via YahooGroups for people in Australia and New Zealand working with volunteers. It has been around for several years.

ALNAP Forum & Blogs
This is an online community / interactive space / online learning community for members of the Active Learning Network for Accountability and Performance in Humanitarian Action (ALNAP).

Appropedia
A wiki for gathering resources regarding sustainability, appropriate technology and poverty reduction. Focused primarily on aid / humanitarian / development workers.

e-Agriculture
a global Community of Practice where people from all over the world exchange information, ideas, and resources related to the use of information and communication technologies (ICT) for sustainable agriculture and rural development.

Eldis Community
An online learning network for those working in aid, humanitarian affairs and development in developing countries. Note the sophisticated platform.

Gender Equality in Free and Open Source Software (FOSS) - This WSIS Knowledge community aims at creating a network of different institutions and projects that deal with the issue of the under-representation of Women in Technology - and more deeply with the Gender Gap in FOSS.

The Humanitarian Social Network
This is a new community on Ning.

Learning Network on Capacity Development (LenCD)
The network aims to promote and facilitate sharing of lessons and learning on capacity development and promote changes for better practice at the global, regional and local levels.

International City/County Management Association (ICMA) Knowledge Network
Committed to fostering excellence and innovation in local government, the ICMA Knowledge Network is an online community built on the following ideals: rich content, social networking and knowledge exchange, partnering, and global scope.

TechSoup Community
An online forum and series of blogs that, together, comprise a learning community/community of practice for nonprofits, libraries and other mission-based agencies to learn to use networking tech in their work.

W3C Business and Community Groups
A W3C Community Group is an open forum where Web developers and other stakeholders develop specifications, hold discussions, develop test suites, and connect with W3C's international community of Web experts. A W3C Business Group gives innovators that want to have an impact on the development of the Web in the near-term a vendor-neutral forum for collaborating with like-minded stakeholders, including W3C Members and non-Members.

LinkedIn Groups
LinkedIn is a professional networking site, and has a groups set up around a variety of professional fields and knowledge areas. Most of the groups cannot be viewed unless you have joined LinkedIn (which is free to do), such as the Stakeholder Engagement Professionals. You can use the search function on LinkedIn, what you have joined, to find various groups by subject-focus.

Twitter-Based Communities of Practice/Knowledge Networks


@pcorpsconnect - PeaceCorps connect, a nonprofit association of current and former Peace Corps members. In addition to regularly engaging with members - and members with each other - they host weekly tweet chats.

#commbuild - this tag is used every Tuesday from 10 - 11 a.m. Pacific time (California, Oregon, Washington state, British Columbia, etc.) for all those that want to talk about online community building for nonprofits and other mission-based organizations. There is usually a topic, introduced a few days beforehand.

#ttvolmgrs - this tag is used every Thursday by people that support and manage volunteers, for questions, answers and comments.

@NoOffenceCIC
"Bringing together the key players in criminal justice across the world."


Video or Avatar-Based Communities


TechSoup formed the Nonprofit Commons five years ago as a virtual community of nonprofit organizations collaborating, thriving and building complex 3D interactive environments and hosting meetings with streaming media and vast volunteerism/action/ learning/simulation experiences.


Also see



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