WikiWednesdayStuttgart, business model innovations for Non-Profits and open-source organization principles

Yes, this is a really long title, but wait …

BarCamp Berlin 3

I am currently in my third sunday session at the BarCampBerlin 3 – and Clemens Lerche and Peter Bihr are leading an open brainstorming session on user-generated content, open source principles and more. I found about this via my post on The Web is changing the world (with Open Source organization principles) – Clemens commented and alerted me to their session.

But where’s the connection to the rest of the title? I guess it’s all about the implications (and potentials) of open source principles. And as we were discussing this (literally, well) also at the last WikiWednesday Stuttgart, e.g. innovative approaches non-profits are applying. While we started with community wiki projects, due to an interesting mixture of audience we ended at a discussion that went much farther then just discussing the potentials of social software – it touched upon business model innovations, especially structural and strategic innovations that can be employed.

So this is the idea for the next (and 7th) WikiWednesday Stuttgart: Let’s have a meeting of social entrepreneurs, innovators and social software enthusiasts and discuss this space. This must not be an incarnation and variation of SocialCamp or Social Bar, but it may well be a start to get local enthusiasts going.

One item on the agenda might be “What can we do with collaboration tools to support Non-profit work?” Well, yes, things like e.g. find experts, build up competency and “professional standing”, help our people to collaborate and communicate more easily and profoundly (all the while given that this is not coming for free but needs quite some time) …

But I guess that’s not all, so I’m thinking of inviting people like Christian Kreutz and Alex Osterwalder to do a keynote of some kind (in a very literal sense). Why do I ask them – for Christian it’s clear, he’s working in this space. And Alex? Lately he posted this:

[…] Some entrepreneurs involved in business model innovation are not only seeking for financial returns, but are also aiming at achieving social, development and environmental returns. In other words, money and fame are not their only motivators. They want to have an impact. What is interesting is that they are aiming at combining financial AND social success. These entrepreneurs try to prove that these two are not necessarily contradictory.

There are are a couple of interesting business models out there that I follow with quite some fascination. Grameen Phone is a telecom company founded by Iqbal Quadir, that has brought connectivity to rural areas in Bangladesh. What is interesting about their business model is that they partnered with the world famous micro finance institution Grameen Bank to exploit synergies.


And he did a workshop on this topic in London (“Disruptive models: The art and science of VISUAL BUSINESS MODEL DESIGN for breakthrough social innovation“) …

Making the links, i.e. how to leverage these new social software tools, new communication channels, new communities et al. in this space might be interesting for many people from Stuttgart too, like e.g. Dr. Brigitte Reiser from nonprofits-vernetzt, Thomas Becker, Cedric of course and other present and past WikiWednesday attendees.

I will coordinate the room and then announce the date via the usual channels, looking forward to this.

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A critical analysis of Social Graphs (and some learnings for social networks in the Enterprise)

There’s a critical analysis of the recent Facebook craze here in the Economist, arguing along solid economical reasons ….

There’s less to Facebook and other social networks than meets the eye
[…] the future of social networking will not be one big social graph but instead myriad small communities on the internet to replicate the millions that exist offline. No single company, therefore, can capture the social graph

This article also holds some learnings for the design of social network infrastructure in the enterprise, but the one above is central in my mind: You better start with the individual knowledge worker that is embedded in small communities of practice – and provide the means for a range of networks, organizational settings and “blended arrangements”, i.e. allowing for diverse mixtures of real-life and virtual networking.

After all, this is what McAfee’s SLATES concept calls for – emergent, freeform collaboration, i.e. letting the communities and networks evolve and emerge from the factual interactions and work practices.

And yes, the importance of small networks and platforms to support them could also be discussed from a business model innovation perspective, well at least for “people who are interested in how Social Networks will play out“, especially in the NGO- and nonprofit-space (more on the upcoming NGO-BarCamp).

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mzungu im Interview

Mein Wiki-Consulting Beraterkollege und Wiki Wednesday Stuttgart-Mitorganisator Cedric Weber wurde ebenfalls interviewt. Auch hier wird deutlich, dass Non-Profit-Organisationen starkes Interesse an Social Software haben müssten – es aber leider noch nicht so weit ist.

Mehr im sehr interessanten Interview, zu Themen rund um “Afrika, Blogs, Wikis, BarCamps und Events rund um Kirche und Christen”.

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