A Method for Collaboration

1.) A short summary of the working group activities to date (there is still a couple of more weeks to come up with the final product), but this will help us provide any feedback on the process. For example, if you have met primarily on email, Google Group, Skype, etc. and how the conversations are going. What are the major themes that are emerging?

1) We have been discussing the topic mainly by email, but lots of good ideas came up. Informally we decided to devide our theme into two main paths:

  • Methods: how to make one and more authors write a post together in an efficient way? What web tools could we use to help that process? What difficulties authors that have already tried out to write collaborative posts have experienced and how we can improve it?
  • Themes: what topics have potential to become a great cross-cultural post? What themes could be enriched with two or more cultural perspectives?

With the Methods, Suzanne has listed some difficulties she has faced in a failed experience of writing a collaborative post about migration, that were: 1) The lack of a method made the whole process too lenghty and the topic finally went out of date 2) Lack of collaborative tools inside WordPress to stimulate collaboration between authors that goes beyond the editorial comments section. She thought those are technical difficulties on which Jeremy might give us some insightful input.

With the themes, lots of ideas for posts came up: migration, racial profiling, water crisis and how different countries are fighting it.
We agreed that we need tools and methods for two stages:

The RESEARCH STAGE, which includes:

1) Brainstorm: anyone in the community can suggest ideas and give inputs in ideas already suggested
2) Editors organize the free-flowing of ideas into groups and identify potential posts
3) Once ideas are more solid and potential posts are identified, authors can sign up for writing it


1) Two or more authors work with one or more editors in actually writing the post
2) Editors work as “leaders” and try to coordinate and facilitate collaboration between authors * This stage is the tricky one. We are trying to discuss it further

2.) An update on the anticipated final product -depending on whether or not the group has decided on what to submit as the final product. This will help us get a better sense how it may be incorporated into the internal meeting.

We have decided to do one collaborative post on MIGRATION. This is the theme we have
agreed on, although we haven't narrowed it down it. The plan is to present the published post and share, in the Summit, the methods and tools we used to come up with it. This post will serve as prototype for future collaborative posts. We also want to present a rough brainstorming of other ideas for collaborative posts.

Submitted by Laura Vidal