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Methods & Tools

Reading recommendations for facilitators

August 02, 2017 Blog Admin Methods & Tools

Rating: 4.7 out of 5

NadiaThere is no shortcut in learning to facilitate. The best teacher is practice followed by observation and reflection through peer exchange, trainings and reading. Facilitation is creative work. Every workshop is an invitation to build anew the reflection and conversation space for participants to explore, learn and understand. This blog post presents three books for facilitators, beginners as well as experienced facilitators; they provide insights and ideas for planning and designing successful workshops

Nadia von Holzen, Learning Moments (more…)

Lab office series, episode 3: Dare to experiment!

June 29, 2017 Natalie Frei Methods & Tools

Rating: 4.5 out of 5

quadraticAfter the last two episodes, we know how to design and furnish a lab office and which doors to knock at for advice. The last episode of this trilogy focuses on how to become operational and how to develop your lab’s full potential. Most importantly, we will explore how to make a lab office a real innovative lab space.

By Natalie Frei, SDC
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Lab office series, episode 1: Discovery Tour

June 13, 2017 Natalie Frei Change Stories, Methods & Tools

Rating: 4.7 out of 5

quadraticIn May, a delegation of SDC’s Knowledge-Learning-Culture division went on an expedition to discover new forms of office design and collaboration. Excited about the prospect of reorganizing our division, we set out to seek inspiration in the global lab trend. We visited five organizations with laboratory aspects in the international cooperation field and took notes.

By Natalie Frei, SDC

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Creating common ground for working together – what it needs and why it matters

May 17, 2017 Blog Admin Methods & Tools

Rating: 4.6 out of 5

Jany picture

Nadia

Workshop space is precious space we want to use wisely. Creating the right conditions is the facilitator’s job. It is part of the design process to think about how to create these conditions and the ambiance conducive for working and learning together in a productive and inspiring way. In this blog post, we share our reflection on what it takes and why it matters to create a common ground for working together.

By Jany Barraut, Beyond Boundaries and Nadia von Holzen, Learning Moments (more…)

Infographics , why bother?

May 03, 2017 Natalie Frei Methods & Tools

Rating: 4.8 out of 5

Portrait_Gabriela MontorziInfographics are great visual tools for clearly communicating complex issues. They transform concepts into accessible and concrete messages. They highlight key information, improve practical observation and reveal connections not visible otherwise. (1)

By Gabriela Montorzi, Scientific Infographics (more…)

Mind map = c’est penser avec stylo

April 26, 2017 Blog Admin Let's Talk Visual, Methods & Tools

Rating: 4.6 out of 5

Nadia

Une mind map – carte mentale ou heuristique – ressemble à un couteau suisse : c’est attractif et pratique. Cette méthodologie visuelle ne passe pas de mode. Elle est toujours moderne, attrayante, puissante.  Qui plus est, c’est facile et rapide. Finalement, sa dimension visuelle permet d’identifier les connexions et les schémas ce qui sert de base pour agir.

Nadia von Holzen, Learning Moments (more…)

Effective Presentation

April 13, 2017 Natalie Frei Methods & Tools, SDC Experiences

Rating: 4.5 out of 5

quadraticIn the last Lunch & Learn, Yvonne Vogel talked – and sang – tips on how to overcome inner constraints and become a better presenter. Key to any successful presentation is an audience-centered approach, which many people struggle with. However, there are some simple exercises to make it easier.

By Natalie Frei, SDC

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Dare to draw! Use simple drawings to communicate, engage and energize groups

March 09, 2017 Blog Admin Let's Talk Visual, Methods & Tools

Rating: 4.6 out of 5

Sarah mugshot 2Caro Van Leeuwen recently posted an inspiring video about how she started using drawings during her internship at SDC, encouraging others to try it too. We did! At a recent Lunch & Learn event, we experimented with simple drawings of people, things and concepts. But what can we do with these drawings? And how can we go further?

By Sarah Clark (more…)

Make good use of internal competencies

January 03, 2017 Leonie Pock Methods & Tools

Rating: 4.5 out of 5

Valerie RossiSince 2010 SDC has developed a new approach for evaluating country strategies through a pilot process. Country evaluations support the definition of new cooperation strategies strategically and stimulate learning. The central pillar of this new approach is the promotion of the exchange and the sharing of knowledge within our institution and among an evaluation team led by an external consultant. What is, therefore, the major difference between country strategy evaluations and other external evaluations? SDC staff is involved in the evaluation team, acts as an evaluator but with an inside knowledge of the institutional issues and debates. A capitalization process of eight country strategy evaluations was undertaken in 2016. Different feedback and opinions of the involved people (peers, consultants, colleagues from the field and from HQ) are presented in the illustrations below.

By Valérie Rossi, SDC (more…)

Communicating innovative ideas with video

December 01, 2016 Leonie Pock Let's Talk Visual, Methods & Tools

Rating: 4.5 out of 5

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

The play button is the most compelling call to action on the web” says Michael Litt, CEO and co-founder of Vidyard, a platform hosting business video content for distribution to websites and social channels. Not very surprising quote considering his position, you may say. But the success of the company reflects also the importance of video not only in marketing but also in other forms of communication. In this blog post, we want to have a closer look at the benefits of video in communication and introduce Lightbulb – a new format for sharing new and innovative learning experiences of SDC collaborators, units and networks. By Leonie Pock

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Value-creation stories for monitoring the value of networks

November 01, 2016 Leonie Pock Methods & Tools

Rating: 4.3 out of 5

Beverly Wenger-TraynerIn SDC learning is taking place in the networks – learning about approaches, about experiences and about good practices. The networks meet regularly in f2f-events in order to engage in this learning. But does it have an effect? What is the outcome of these events? By Beverly Wenger-Trayner, co-author of the Value Creation Framework

 

 

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The secret behind interactive webinars that energize and inspire

July 20, 2016 Blog-Admin1 Learning Elsewhere, Methods & Tools, SDC Experiences

Rating: 4.9 out of 5

NadiaAre you planning to organize webinars? Then do what the Learning & Networking team did: We learned a great deal by observing how others designed their webinars. The webinar series on storytelling organized by Nicole Bittel from the Swiss Distance University of Applied Sciences were interactive and energizing. The secret: Focus on one topic, make it conversational and build in many interactive moments.

By Nadia von Holzen, SDC

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11½ ideas when to use a digital story

July 13, 2016 Blog-Admin1 Change Stories, Methods & Tools

Rating: 4.6 out of 5

ECC PCL VONNA

We made stories. Making stories is great learning. This we know, this we experienced. Using stories is the next step. In knowledge communication there are many options to integrate digital stories into sharing and learning processes.  In this blog post we collected 11 ½ ideas for you how to use your story or stories created by your colleagues.

Carmen Eckert, Leonie Pock and Nadia von Holzen, SDC (more…)

Dare to facilitate

May 25, 2016 Blog-Admin1 Change Stories, Let's Talk Visual, Methods & Tools

Rating: 4.5 out of 5

Nadia

Facilitation is (also) a question of confidence, of daring to “stand there” and to be the facilitator. But first facilitation is a question of good preparation and of getting the 3 Ps clear: purpose, people and process. The key task of a facilitator is helping the organisers to clarify the purpose of the workshop, to understand people’s needs and questions, and to design a good process that is interactive, relevant and meaningful. 

Nadia von Holzen, SDC 

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Physical Design of Space to Support Learning

May 18, 2016 Leonie Pock Methods & Tools

Rating: 4.6 out of 5

Polona SirnikJana Repanšek_smallLearning being in the center of our work, we are constantly thinking of innovative ways to   bring it to the next level. Based on our substantial study of theories of learning and change, we about a year ago decided to devote our attention to the question of how physical design of the environment supports learning. We have teamed up with an architect to help us translate our understanding of learning into the physical design of our lobby that became an important part of our learning space.

By Polona Sirnik and Jana Repanšek, Center of Excellence in Finance (CEF)

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Kanban – an amazing technique to get a grip on your work

April 26, 2016 Leonie Pock Methods & Tools

Rating: 4.8 out of 5

nadjaschnetzler_1321302641_63Kanban is a Japanese word which signifies «visual signal». In the industry, for instance in car production kanbans are used to singnalize important information in the workflow: When do I need to reorder materials, for instance. The idea of kanban has spread to other industries in the last 15 years. Two pioneers of kanban in knowledge work are David Anderson and Jim Benson. They started using kanban to optimize the flow of work for individuals, teams or whole organisations. If you are interested in their work, you can read «Personal Kanban» by Jim Benson and Tonianne de Maria Barry or «Kanban – successful evolutionary change for your organisaton» by David Anderson. Using kanban for your own individual work is fairly straightforward and easy. What is demanding is to keep using it and evolving with it. 

By Nadja Schnetzler

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Are you preparing social reporting for your next face-to-face meeting? Here are 6 points to remember

March 09, 2016 Leonie Pock Methods & Tools, SDC Networks

Rating: 4.8 out of 5

Nadia von HolzenThe idea behind social reporting during a learning event is not only to jointly produce a report and reach out to a wider audience. The beauty of social reporting is that it adds an additional layer of reflection to the workshop conversation. This blog post gives some tips how to include participants and how to make the task of the social reporting team doable and meaningful. The most important of the 6 tips is: Prepare what you can prepare and be flexible at the workshop.

Nadia von Holzen, SDC

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Joint Learning on Pastoralism – a process of experience capitalization among SDC Programme Officers

March 03, 2016 Leonie Pock Methods & Tools, SDC Experiences

Rating: 4.5 out of 5

Manuel Flury SDC Programme Officers of West Africa and the Horn of Africa engaged in a joint learning process on pastoralism. In a series of meetings they collected, synthesized and exchanged experiences in eight key topics of this area. Manuel Flury and Charlotte Nager take a step back and reflect about the added value and the limitations of such an experience capitalization process.

By Manuel Flury, SDC, Addis Ababa and Charlotte Nager, SDC, Berne

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The Story behind the Story

February 24, 2016 Leonie Pock Methods & Tools

Rating: 4.7 out of 5

_I0A2470 (Large)Behind each story there is another story. Our stories are connected. So is the story about the Mongolian herders connected with Udval, a young leader supporting herder communities in Western Mongolia. Udval uses participatory video to give the herders voice and to support their sharing and learning. Soyolmaa Dolgor, communication specialist working for SDC Mongolia, travelled with Udval to Tsetseg soum, Khovd province to document her meeting with the herders’ community.

Soyolmaa Dolgor, SDC Mongolia

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Documenting the process: The long road to a good story

December 23, 2015 Blog-Admin1 Let's Talk Visual, Methods & Tools, SDC Experiences, SDC Networks

Rating: 4.6 out of 5

Hynek X-masThis post tells the story of documenting a learning process. The initiative to systematize experiences in the area of pastoralism was launched in collaboration with the Agriculture and Food Security network. The Learning & Networking team decided to document exactly this process. Two ‘reporters’, Charlotte Nager and Hynek Bures, joined the workshop in Kenia, where around 20 people gathered to learn from each others’ experiences in the field of pastoralism. While the participants were involved in thematic thinking the two ‘reporters’ added an additional layer of reflection. This challenging endeavor will hopefully inspire future stories about learning.

By Hynek Bures, dubbed perceptions (more…)

Creative Facilitation – an inspiring book for facilitators

November 18, 2015 Blog-Admin1 Methods & Tools

Rating: 4.5 out of 5

Nadia

The new facilitation book by Viv McWaters and Johnnie Moore for designing and conducting inspiring and creative meetings is available online. It is a book about the art of facilitation. The book is an invitation to reflect our role and our understanding as facilitators. It is not a book about techniques; it is a book about BEING the facilitator.

By Nadia von Holzen, SDC

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Creating a digital story is deep learning

November 11, 2015 Blog-Admin1 Change Stories, Let's Talk Visual, Methods & Tools

Rating: 4.7 out of 5

AlfonsoNadiaThe beauty of digital storytelling is that the results are not only visible but also shareable. The beauty is also that the process of creating stories within a 3-days workshop triggers deep reflection and learning for the each storyteller.  

Alfonso Flores, communication specialist working for SDC’s Water and Sanitation programme in Central America shares his personal learning experience.

By Alfonso Flores and Nadia von Holzen, SDC (more…)

Input planned – speaker invited? Go for an interview!

October 14, 2015 Carmen Eckert Methods & Tools, SDC Experiences

Rating: 4.6 out of 5

There are alternatives to the over-used format of PowerPoint presentation followed by Q&A and discussion. Making an interview with the (guest) speaker is an interesting and easy to realize option. All it needs is curiosity and openness from the side of the interviewer and interviewee; and a bit of preparation.

Barbara Affolter, Anne Moulin, Carmen Eckert and Nadia von Holzen, SDC (more…)

Sharing knowledge and experiences: create events that inspire and set free energy for work

October 07, 2015 Blog-Admin1 Methods & Tools

Rating: 4.8 out of 5

My personal social media storyLet’s create learning events that really generate motivation and impulses for our work! This blog post suggests three approaches how to plan for more inspiring and powerful events: ask more than you tell; inquire one case deeply; and make it a learning experience for all senses.

Corinne Sprecher, Agridea

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How to make 1-minute video statements with your smartphone – Part 3: Edit and share

September 30, 2015 Carmen Eckert Let's Talk Visual, Methods & Tools

Rating: 4.5 out of 5

Hynek Bures neu

Do you want your message to have an influence? Share it! Here is how:

by Hynek Bures (dubbed perceptions) (more…)