Communication for development, KM and blurred boundaries: an interview with Michael Victor


In December 2013, a couple of very interesting workshops took place on the ILRI Ethiopia campus around the topic of knowledge management and communication. On that occasion, I interviewed Michael Victor, communication ‘Comms’ and KM coordinator for the Challenge Program for Water and Food (CPWF) and for the CGIAR Research Program on Water, Land and […]

Learning-blind development (aid) and the missed opportunities for a real difference


The global development sector is a learning universe, a space of experimentation and failures. One can read this positively – as in “a lot of learning is happening in it” – or negatively – as in “a lot has to be learned still and so much effort goes to waste”. Are we blind to learning […]

Harvesting insights (6): A checklist of comms/KM functions in any development (research) organisation or initiative


Just a post to gather my thoughts on this once and for all on this topic. Together with some colleagues from WorldFish and the Inernational Water Management Institute (IWMI), we have been pondering about the profile of comms/KM profiles and positions in any organisation and/or project, since ILRI and IWMI held a really interesting workshop […]

Revisiting the links between communication and knowledge management


At the fifth informal get-together of the Ethiopia/Addis Ababa KM4Dev network, one of the focused conversations we held was about the relations between communication and knowledge management. I wrote this year about how KM can power communication. I also blogged about the different families of engagement in which comms and KM can be found. The […]

A journey through five years of blogging


On this day, exactly five years ago, I started blogging. On this very blog. My first time ever. Not a particularly great post actually. Nor many posts that followed that primal scream on the web. But like for many others before (Leo Babauta, Harold Jarche, Irving Wladawsky-Berger and most recently Jeff Bullas in the corporate world), […]

Researching… good questions from wrong ideas


(A little caveat here: obviously not all researchers fall in the traps described below, and those are not just traps for scientists but also for many other types of people). It’s been a little under a year that I’ve landed in the fascinating world of research and its even more fascinating appetite for questions. However […]

Annual reports, the gold standard for the state of KM in the company?


Annual reports are a painful exercise, for most companies anyway. I have seen managers, designers and communication specialists from various organisations tear their hair by lumps working on this annually recurring chore. Being personally much more inclined towards the knowledge-sharing and collective thinking side of communication (away from unidirectional message massaging, marketing verbose and public […]

The most difficult job in the world?


It may not be the hardest job in the world, but it still isn’t easy peasy to be a communication and/or knowledge management specialist in many (research for) development organisations. Typically, communication (let alone KM) has always been one of the first areas where budget cuts affect staff first. There is much expected from communication […]

Power your communication with ‘KM inside’


Where to nestle knowledge management in the work place? Is it a field or discipline that deserves a unit in its own right – with its own breed of specialists (the knowledge manager) – or is it a mainstream support function that shoulders every other process? The answer differs in every organisation. In many cases, knowledge […]

At the IKM Table (2): individual agency vs. organisational remit, accountability and impact pathways for the future of IKM-Emergent


Day 2 of the final IKM workshop dedicated to ‘practice-based change’. As much as on day 1, there is a lot on the menu of this second day: Individual agency vs. organisational remit; Accountability; Impact and change pathways; A possible extension of the programme: IKM-2 On individual agency and organisational remit: We are made of […]