Cooperation Offices and Networks – SCO Gaza and Westbank has all its senses in alert when it comes to Networks!

June 12, 2013 bit-wartung SDC Experiences, SDC Networks

Rating: none

The Swiss Cooperation Office (SCO) Gaza and West Bank welcomes the SDC networks as back-up place to air ideas and think afresh. At the same time it asks for a win-win formula between the members’ concerns and demands and the networks’ predefined agendas. In the end, sharing and learning in networks is meant to increase the relevance of its work for the benefit of others.


Cooperation Offices and Networks – Networking in the far reaches of Mongolia

May 15, 2013 bit-wartung SDC Experiences, SDC Networks

Rating: none
The Swiss Cooperation Office (SCO) Mongolia has witnessed a clear transformation from scepticism about the networks’ usefulness towards a supportive environment for knowledge management. This change is so far one of attitude only, however, with little direct impact on operations in the field. (more…)

The SDC network Democratization, Decentralization and Local Governance: lively, dynamic, innovative and planting seeds for action

May 08, 2013 bit-wartung SDC Networks

Rating: none

Connecting to peers, being exposed to new thinking and exchanging experiences are most valuable to members of the Democratization, Decentralization and Local Governance network (DLGN). Storytelling on knowledge sharing and learning within the DLGN network suggests that this networking translates into concrete innovations in the field. (more…)

Cooperation Offices and Networks – The Pretoria Story

April 24, 2013 bit-wartung SDC Experiences, SDC Networks

Rating: none

In the perspective of the Swiss Cooperation Office Southern Africa the networks did arrive. Reto Wieser, Director of Cooperation summarizes how networks make a difference for his team. And he points out some suggestions how networked learning and collaboration can be further strengthened trough the active implication of the Directors of Cooperation and the members. (more…)

Three Reasons to Organize your Next Workshop in the Open Space Format

February 06, 2013 bit-wartung Methods & Tools

Rating: none

Are you planning a face-face meeting to explore key issues and design action plans? The Open Space methodology would definitively be an option. Read how the key elements of Open Space – the circle, the joint agenda setting, and the free discussion space – could create momentum to advance important issues.

By Nadia von Holzen, SDC (more…)

Why is „Manejo Integrado de Plagas” the number one download from SDC Websites

January 23, 2013 bit-wartung Learning Elsewhere, SDC Experiences

Rating: none

The importance of knowledge brokers for learning in SDC or why “Manejo Integrado de Plagas” (in engl. Integrated Pest Management) was the most downloaded document of SDC websites. (more…)

The SDC Learning & Networking Blog: less reading – less writing – more talking

January 09, 2013 bit-wartung Methods & Tools

Rating: none

By Nadia von Holzen, SDC 

A blog is conversation. We want to make the reading as well as the writing of the SDC Learning & Networking Blog faster to have time for the conversation.


The sdclan Blog Team wishes you a Happy New Year!

December 19, 2012 bit-wartung Let's Talk Visual

Rating: none

Comic about the blogger and the christmas post:

Disassembling Change: How to manage change processes?

November 07, 2012 bit-wartung Learning Elsewhere

Rating: none

For you as development professionals change is your daily basis. You aim for, provoke and witness change processes. You steer projects and manage programmes. You take care that you partner organisations are strengthened. You are part of changing teams. Have you ever thought about what change is for you? And what it needs to effectively support change? (more…)

The Horizontal Learning Program is like Real Life Facebook

October 16, 2012 bit-wartung SDC Experiences

Rating: none

Tommaso TabetHorizontal learning enables communities to share best practices within and across communities. In this blog post Tommaso Tabet, SDC agency in Dhaka, in collaboration with engaged HLP Friends, explain that it is a tool for sharing good practices, replicating and liking them, and therefore has much in common with the world’s most popular social media. (more…)

Swiss Development Research in transition

October 03, 2012 bit-wartung Learning Elsewhere

Rating: none

Manuel FluryThe NCCR North-South will end mid 2013 and the first call of the new “R4D” fund is launched. There are lessons to be learnt from the NCCR in how best research, policy and practice can continuously and increasingly exchange and be effective. (more…)

Make your network mystically attractive like the Cube of Murten

September 26, 2012 bit-wartung Learning Elsewhere, SDC Experiences

Rating: none

Ernst BolligerThe SDC’s Learning and Networking section could inspire itself from the monolith set in the lake of Murten during Expo’02. Ernst Bolliger from AGRIDEA extracts the symbolic weight of this landart installation and further reflects it on the values and work of networks. (more…)

Social Reporting – Behind the Scenes

September 11, 2012 LND Methods & Tools

Rating: none

CarmenRiffNadiaNaraSocial Reporting on and from face-to-face meetings of SDC’s networks became a trendy practice. This blog post looks behind the scenes and reflects on three questions: What is actually Social Reporting? What makes it social? And is it worth the effort? (more…)

Learning in Brunnen – Some Reflections from the Seminar of Coordinators

August 29, 2012 LND SDC Experiences

Rating: none

Manuel FluryManuel Flury reflects the Seminar of the Coordinators from a learning perspective and comes to the conclusion that the Seminar was not a learning event and had no learning agenda; nevertheless important learning happened as the most important side event. (more…)

Strolling along the Border between Implicit and Explicit Knowledge Management

June 12, 2012 LND Methods & Tools

Rating: 4.5 out of 5

Ernst BolligerMake implicit knowledge explicit und thus accessible to everybody! This is a request I often come across dealing with knowledge management issues. In how far is this possible? Kitchen recipes make it clear: Basic knowledge and skills can be described, but what about mastery skills? There are limits in transforming implicit into explicit knowledge. (more…)

Open Doors and Joint Reflection – The Knowledge Management Practice at SCO Chisinau, Moldova

May 30, 2012 LND SDC Experiences

Rating: none

Team ChisinauInvolved in a rethinking process on its institutional learning mechanisms the Swiss Cooperation Office in Chisinau made use of the Knowledge Management workshop for SDC field staff and local partners. This training on demand offered by the SDC Knowledge and Learning Processes Division aims at sharing and raising awareness for SDC’s Knowledge Management practices. In today’s blog post the staff of the SCO Chisinau offers insights gained in this two-day training. (more…)

6 Questions to Yonas Mekonen

May 15, 2012 LND SDC Networks

Rating: none

Yonas MekonenIn our interview series “6 questions to…” we ask people from in and around SDC and the KM world the same 6 questions. Our goal is to offer insights into different working methods, different ways of looking at individual and institutional learning, and different ideas and opinions on how to make organizations more efficient… And, along the way, to hear interesting stories and experiences our interviewees have in store! (more…)

Touch Ground – the Value Added of a Field Visit in a Face to Face Meeting

April 25, 2012 Blog-Admin1 SDC Experiences

Rating: none

Nadia von Holzen Barbara_Affolter Ursula_Koenig
During the 2nd day of its face to face the SDC network Migration and Development left the meeting room to visit activities in relation to migration in Dhaka. This blog post outlines why and how the “dive” into the context and confrontation with different perspectives can accelerate and nurture the network’s conversation (deliberations, dialogue). (more…)

Visualization in Development Cooperation – On Photo Contests and Info Graphics

April 03, 2012 LND Methods & Tools, SDC Experiences

Rating: none

Nadia Lanfranchi

Today knowledge exchange is based to a great extent on written communication. Sometimes it seems that the ability to visualize ideas, to tell stories through pictures has been lost. Simultaneously we are exposed more than ever to non-verbal modes of communication, especially through photography and film. This post takes the tension between a widespread availability of easy-to-handle visualization tools and their comparatively poor integration into daily work processes as a starting point. In a video interview Anandsaikhan Nyamdavaa, National Programme Officer for SDC in Mongolia, shares with us experiences made by the Cooperation Office when trying to incorporate visual methods into different steps of the project cycle – from the kick-off event through to the report writing. (more…)

The beauty of networks: smart, dynamic, innovative

March 20, 2012 Blog-Admin1 Learning Elsewhere

Rating: none

Nadia von Holzen

In her blog post Nadia von Holzen reflects on the nature of networks, on their constitution, texture and driving force. Networks shouldn’t be taken as rigid entities, they are driven by people and their engagement and are thus propelled by an inner dynamic. Networks grow, evolve and move and it is the network’s members who breathe life into this loose conglomerate transforming it into something similar to a living organism. Therefore networks are pivotal to a learning organization as they comprise essential qualities to manage, transform and generate knowledge. (more…)

Tomorrow’s Power of Knowledge

March 14, 2012 LND Learning Elsewhere

Rating: none

Manuel EtterKnowledge is Power In today’s blog post Manuel Etter follows the historical traces of this saying emphasizing an action-oriented quality of knowledge rather than its power maintaining virtue. In a second step he links this historical meaning of knowledge with the future of development cooperation. He questions the conditions and determinants that permit to find adequate answers to the issues of the future. He asks how development cooperation and above all knowledge management and exchange should be organized in order to meet increasingly global challenges. (more…)

Learning on the job with… Shakarbek Niyatbekov

November 29, 2011 LND SDC Networks

Rating: none

Interview by Carsten Schulz, Agridea

ShakarAs with many things knowledge management starts with ourselves. Today’s interviewee Shakarbek Niyatbekov talks about his personal strategies, about knowledge sources and networks supporting him in daily work. He is working at the Swiss Cooperation Office (SCO) in Tajikistan since 2005. He started as a project manager at the Project Implementation Unit (PIU) of the SCO in Tajikistan. Later on after integration of the PIU into the main office he continued his work as National Program Officer responsible for the Rule of Law / Access to Justice projects funded by SDC in Tajikistan. (more…)

Revisiting Storytelling

October 25, 2011 LND Methods & Tools

Rating: 4.2 out of 5

By Riff Fullan, Helvetas Swiss Intercooperation

2010_riff_fullan copy“If many people from different hierarchies and countries come together there are always those who think they know less about a subject and participate less in the discussion. They may be afraid to say something wrong. To start with personal stories demonstrates that everyone has a valuable experience to share and we can share it in the language we feel comfortable” (reflection of SDC gender team member on using stories in a workshop context, SDC Story Guide, p. 30).

Conscious engagement with storytelling for knowledge sharing and learning began almost 10 years ago within SDC and was pursued with some energy, especially in the first years. (more…)

Applying Knowledge Management Tools at Work – SDC staff share their experiences (1)

July 19, 2011 bit-wartung Methods & Tools, SDC Networks

Rating: none

by Corinne Sprecher, AGRIDEA / Team International Corinne-Sprecher

In 2007 and 2008 SDC’s former Knowledge and Research Team collected and documented tools and methods for planning and reflection of own activities, for drawing lessons and for sharing insights and applying them. This work resulted in the publication of the SDC Knowledge Management Toolkit on the Learning & Networking website and in print. However, km-tools are only of use if applied consciously. And they are only applied if they promise to better reach a certain goal. They must be well applied to be effective.  We have been looking for champions who consciously apply tools in their work and who find them helpful. In this post, they share with us some of their experiences and their lessons – practical examples for illustrating the toolkit. Use it as inspiration to try them out by yourself! (more…)

Everybody is a know-body or: How to make Knowledge Management a normal daily business

April 27, 2011 Manuel Flury Learning Elsewhere, Methods & Tools

Rating: none

Ernst BolligerBy Ernst Bolliger, AGRIDEA




 “What is your job about? Knowledge management!?
Oh God, what’s this?”


 … After some explanation it is getting easier to understand…

“Ok, I see, you talk to people about the way they share what they know and what they have experienced. Knowledge management is about clever and bright people who know everything and about the less bright ones that know almost nothing … and how to connect them. About information and knowledge the bright people like to share and their motivation to do so.”

Checking recent contributions on this blog I tend to believe that knowledge management is highly complex and an affair for specialists. That’s right; there are lot of situations that need complex approaches to address issues of knowledge management in a correct way. But daily life offers lots of situations where simple forms of knowledge management – or let’s say mutual learning and networking – produces encouraging results.

So, what makes mutual learning and networking successful? How can we make the highly complex affair “knowledge management” accessible to everybody? How to make it a normal daily business?

There is one short answer: KEEP IT SIMPLE!