Tuesday, September 21, 2004

About RDeL 

A very interesting post by Harold. I was there in 2003 when RDeL was launched. That day Harold was given the mandate of organizing how this industrial CoP would interact. His conclusions now that the project is completed:

- A sense of community cannot be forced;
- Communities are self-defined;
- Communities are conversations; and
- Communities evolve over time.

- Face-to-face contact can be the impetus for online conversations, while
- Online contact can be the impetus for face-to-face meetings.

- Communities of individuals appear to have stronger bonds than communities of companies;
- Blogging helps to define dispersed communities; and
- Password-protected web sites do not encourage conversation.

I think it raises fundamental questions:
1) Can CoP be built?
2) Are CoP more an emergent phenomenon?
3) Should we be focusing more on creating CoP or on creating the conditions where CoP develop?

My instinct tells me that CoP just "happen" when the right conditions are there.

I will be watching Harold's presentation tomorrow at the LearnNB forum and will report about it (and about other interesting presentations).

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