Socitm and eGov partner in launch of GovXchange

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I notice that eGov Monitor has partnered with Socitm for the launch of GovXchange, which, according to the press release is “a knowledge-sharing platform that can support communities of interest around specific topics. GovXchange will not only collect and disseminate published information (like its forerunner, egov exchange), it will also enable users to create and share new knowledge and information by building private or public ‘spaces’ around their professional interests.”

Sounds great, but having signed up to several of these ‘spaces’ back in December 2006, I’ve yet to see any sign of collaboration or knowledge sharing. Despite having an average of twenty or so other members in the communities (spaces) I have joined, there are no discussions, no forum entries, no wiki contributions and nothing in the ‘knowledge’ sections – in fact, they are probably better described as ‘empty spaces’. And before I’m taken to task on this, I have started the one and only forum thread in the ‘spaces’ I have joined.

The key issue here, is the belief that a community of interest or practice can self-germinate. This is not the approach we’ve taken in developing the IDeA Communities of Practice. Similar in concept to GovXchange in terms of providing a platform for providing (and encouraging) knowledge sharing, but with no commercial baggage, and with each community being professionally facilitated. There is little risk of having empty spaces, because the facilitator ‘seeds’ the forum and knowledge library as part of the pre-launch planning activities.

However, this might prove an interesting experiment in community dynamics – i.e. how effective is a non-facilitated community compared with a facilitated one? I’ll keep an eye on this and provide an update in a month or so.

About Post Author

Stephen Dale

I’m a life-long learner with an insatiable curiosity about life. I love travel, good food, and good company. I’m happy to share what I know with others….even the interesting stuff! My outlook on life is pretty well captured in this quote from a book about the legend of King Arthur: “The best thing for being sad,” replied Merlin, beginning to puff and blow, “is to learn something. That’s the only thing that never fails. You may grow old and trembling in your anatomies, you may lie awake at night listening to the disorder of your veins, you may miss your only love, you may see the world about you devastated by evil lunatics, or know your honour trampled in the sewers of baser minds. There is only one thing for it then — to learn. Learn why the world wags and what wags it. That is the only thing which the mind can never exhaust, never alienate, never be tortured by, never fear or distrust, and never dream of regretting. Learning is the only thing for you. Look what a lot of things there are to learn.” ― T.H. White, The Once and Future King So much to learn, so little time!
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