4 MAY 2020
WHAT DO SOCIAL CHANGE ORGANISATIONS NEED TO KEEP IN MIND TO WORK ONLINE? APC RELAUNCHES “CLOSER THAN EVER” GUIDE
APC has been working as a completely virtual, remotely connected network since it was born in 1990, evolving and adapting throughout these 30 years. Now that the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic is pushing many people and organisations to work and live online, we decided to update and relaunch a guide that was first published in 2011: Closer than ever: A guide for social change organisations who want to work online.
In the updated 2020 guide, APC shares knowledge and experience harvested through three decades of remote working, hoping they can be helpful to other non-profit organisations. It focuses on systems and practices to maximise the benefits of working remotely and mitigate its challenges, in the context of this current crisis but also in the longer term. The guide draws on your views – the views and experiences of APC members, partners, consultants and staff who work online for social change. Your perspectives are the basis for this tool, which is organised sequentially following the level of importance that those interviewed placed on each issue. Our starting point is people.Closer than ever is structured around the following issues:The people: How do you establish trusting relationships in online work? How to promote interaction and closeness? What type of people work best in online networked environments?The processes: What types of processes does an organisation need to work online? How do you manage your projects online? What about human resources?The tools: Which information and communications technology (ICT) tools are the most useful for working online? What is free/libre and open source software (FLOSS)? How should my organisation start using ICTs to work online?Good practices: How do we put all of these together to effectively implement our projects and activities online? We share some examples for organisations that are considering carrying out their work remotely: “GISWatch: Writing a book together online”; “FTX: Planning an international workshop together online”; “GreeningIT: Running an international project workshop online.” More practical examples will be shared in the weeks to come. We want to thank all our members and partners who made this guide possible and encourage you all to go through it, send us your feedback, and share it with others who could find it useful. APC.ORG — FACEBOOK.COM/APCNEWS — TWITTER.COM/APC_NEWS— INSTAGRAM.COM/APC_NETWORK