The Virtual Session Design Canvas (Beta)

The Virtual Session Design Canvas is for anyone who has attended the Virtual Session Design Lab, An Online Facilitator Coaching Session, or has read ‘Tips for Designing an Effective Workshop Session’. It assumes a familiarity with Malcolm S. Knowles Adult Learning Theories and ADIDS as a workshop format.  This canvas […]


Best Practices for Co-Creating Network-Centric Resources

On August 26th, 2020, we held an online discussion with members of our network of resource designers to compare notes, share challenges and solutions in engaging communities and networks in co-creating knowledge-assets. We were fortunate to have Chloé Mikolajczak from The Restart Project, as an anchor for the discussion, sharing […]


Indicators of Success for Network-Centric Resources

Notes from a Network-Centric Resource Project online discussion that took place on March 12th, 2020. Network-Centric Resources are hard and take an incredibly long time to develop and get right. As we are building knowledge assets for communities and networks to use, it’s hard to measure success. How do we […]


Recipes for Facilitative Leadership – a workshop session design

At Aspiration’s Non-Profit Developer Summit in November 2019, I attended a workshop on Facilitative Leadership run by Misty Avila. What struck me about the session was how Misty walked the walk, demonstrating the power of facilitative leadership through the session design, providing structure and scaffolding for participants to share and […]


What I’ve Learned after Seven Years of FabRiders

Reflections on how to be, and not be, a freelancer. Recently, someone on LinkedIn wrote to congratulate me on my seventh anniversary at Fabriders. I was a bit taken aback. Had it been seven years?  The story behind FabRiders My career does have seven-year phases. Night Club DJ, Non-Profit Admin […]


What we’ve learned implementing a Data Champions initiative

Our work with 360Giving and UK Community Foundations to establish a network of data champions, has revealed the thirst that community foundation managers have for being data-informed to improve the impact of grantmaking. This has been reposted from our report on the 360Giving website. There is also a summary. Building […]


A Workshop Exercise on Creating User Personas

I was first introduced to user personas participating in a design sprint by Aspiration in 2005. In that workshop, we were asked to imagine users of Social Source Commons, a website to share lists of software tools that you already use, gain knowledge and support, and discover new tools. What […]


What we’ve learned about building data culture in community foundations

This has been reblogged from 360Giving Over the past eight months we’ve been developing a network of Data Champions working in community foundations across the UK. The initiative is a collaboration between 360Giving, FabRiders and UK Community Foundations. In April 2019 we held a workshop focusing on how to strengthen and improve the data […]


Gunner on Facilitative Leadership, Online Discussion Notes

FabRiders’ Network-Centric Resources Project supports the development of people-powered and participatory resources that establish assets for networks and communities. Our past online discussions have focused on developing content with and for communities and network’s, such as Heather Leson on curating data-literacy social learning curriculum with Humanitarians in IFRC’s Data Playbook, Greg Bloom on co-creating Data Standards with Health and […]


A Draft Module on Listening and Learning for Event Design

This draft module was intially designed for CIVICUS, to support their partners in the Speak! Campaign. We are thankful for the invaluable contributions of the team at CIVICUS: Hannah Wheatley, Frances Topham Smallwood, Soledad Gattoni and Stephanie Brancaforte. We are also grateful for all the guidance we’ve received on designing […]


Mor Rubinstein, on co-creating a governance structure for Open Heroines. Online Discussion Notes

FabRiders’ Network-Centric Resources Project supports the development of people-powered and participatory resources that establish assets for networks and communities. Our past online discussions have focused on developing content with and for communities and network’s, such as Heather Leson on co-creating data-literacy curriculum with Humanitarians in IFRC’s Data Playbook, Greg Bloom on creating Data Standards […]


Our Next Data Literacy Consortium User Group Meeting

Building a Data Culture You spoke and we listened. We’re excited to talk and share with you again. Our next consortium call will be focused on best practices. We will hear from experts researching, advising organisations on and doing the day-to-day work of building a data culture within an organisation, […]


What We’re Learning From Building A Data Champions Network

This blog is cross-posted from the 360Giving Blog. Big thanks to Jeremy Peters, Rachel Rank & Mor Rubinstein for their edits and inputs. Communities are complex and getting a clear understanding of them is a journey FabRiders’ capacity building work has focused on researching data literacy, designing social learning experiencesand co-creating knowledge assets […]


Data & Storytelling Workshop

This workshop will help participants understand how to build compelling stories from datasets. We start with focusing on the ‘who’ we are telling the story to and how to craft a narrative that is compelling to them. We then explore the data that the participants are working with and draft […]


Greg Bloom, Open Referral, on co-creating data standards.

FabRiders’ Network-Centric Resources Project supports the development of people-powered and participatory resources that establish assets for networks and communities. Our past online discussions have focused on developing content with and for communities and network’s, such as Soraya Okuda and EFF’s Security Education Companion and Heather Leson with IFRC’s Data Playbook, or building an event in collaboration with 2000 individuals […]


Sarah Allen, MozFest Director, on how to collaborate with 2,000 participants. Online Discussion Notes.

FabRiders’ Network-Centric Resources Project supports the development of people-powered and participatory resources that establish assets for networks and communities. Our past online discussions have focused on developing content with and for communities and network’s, such as Soraya Okuda and EFF’s Security Education Companion and Heather Leson with IFRC’s Data Playbook, or around collaboration […]


The Lifecycle of a Network-Centric Resource

A network-centric resource is a knowledge asset that supports interaction and strengthens the ability of a community or network to exist. They can be collection of curriculum such as IFRC’s Data Playbook, EFF’s Security Education Companion, or events like MozFest. We’ve chosen to describe the method of developing and sustaining […]


What We’ve Learned by Prototyping Workshops

The discipline of iteration and testing have been the most important processes to our work at FabRiders. A final product is never produced, whether it’s a how-to guide or a project plan, without distributing lots of drafts and incorporating lots of feedback. All our work is a prototype, as even […]


Tips for designing an effective workshop session   Recently updated !

Our journey learning about effective workshop session design began in the mid-90’s, when we were helping activists and community organisers in the United States understand how to harnass the potential of the Internet. What we’ve learned about session design has largely been achieved through a combination of trial and error (evaluating […]


A Data Strategy Workshop Curriculum

This is a day-long training that we’ve run in at least a dozen countries for a variety of individuals involved in social change at various levels of ‘data literacy.’  Big thanks to all the participants that have provided feedback, along with: School of Data for all their curriculum on data literacy, […]


A training of trainers module on adult learning and ADIDS

As someone who has spent a good part of the last two decades developing trainings and workshop sessions and subsequently learning from those experiences, I’m often asked to help other trainers develop curriculum on a variety of topics. This module has been evolving over the years as a result of contributing […]


Weeknotes for November 13th, 2020   Recently updated !

Refrains I find myself repeating. Your virtual convening must have purpose Since barriers to joining a virtual event are lower, you have a greater chance of gathering a diverse group of participants. People don’t need to travel, get on aeroplanes, deal with visa issues, etc. However, because the barrier is […]


Weeknotes for November 6th, 2020

Articulating the Big Picture In my rich fantasy life, everyone who works for a social change organisation can map every task in front of them on a journey to achieving a vision of success. This implies that every social change has a vision of success, and their strategies and tactics […]


Weeknotes for October 23rd, 2020

Seeding a Network of Practice We’re helping the Institute for Economic Justice plan a convening to be a first step towards building a network of practice that strengthens the connection between economic policy and human rights. We’ve started interviewing potential participants on what they want to get out of such […]


Weeknotes for October 16th, 2020

I’m enjoying reading “The Book of Trespass” by Nick Davies. I had picked it up after reading this article and because my husband and I spend a lot of time walking across the British countryside with our dog, Ada. I am quite interested in the tradition of rambling and how […]


Weeknotes for October 9th, 2020

“I think we need to lose the parenthesis around Virtual” – I was getting some feedback from Colleagues on a new resource called The (Virtual) Session Design Canvas when Tin Geber threw that one out. I had started using the virtual with parenthesis last March when I shifted my first […]


Weeknotes for Sept 25th, 2020

Caught up with online discussion outputs, prepped for upcoming workshops, ran another (Virtual) lab and announced a new lab offering. Right before getting stuck into the Climate:Red summit, we ran a Network-Centric Resources Online Discussion where a group of knowledge-asset resource designers co-created a best practices list on co-creation. This […]


Weeknotes for Sept 18th, 2020

Lot’s of conversations this week with people planning upcoming virtual events and meetings. Pieces of advice that I keep finding myself giving: Focus on the participant experience and articulate the value of attending. Most people don’t go to conferences for the sessions, but for the opportunity to meet funders and […]


Weeknotes for September 11, 2020

Some truths about running virtual events were very evident this week. Know your goals Focus on the participant experience Test the tech in any way you think might be relevant Rehearse if you have a team that needs to work together to deliver different pieces of a session And a […]


Weeknotes for August 28th, 2020

I have this vague recollection that August is supposed to be quiet as everyone goes on holiday. Lots happened this week and am bracing for a busy September. Working as part of The Solferino Academy team, along with Virtually Amazing, we’ve been running a series of online coaching sessions for […]


Weeknotes for August 21st, 2020

This week, I finished the first draft of a Session Host handbook and also started to compile safety, privacy and community participation guidelines for the Climate:Red Summit. It brought home for me how events are living organisms. The critical elements of that organism are the participants, and the focus has […]


Weeknotes for July 31st, 2020

This week I learned a hell of a lot about RightsCon, the world’s leading summit on human rights in the digital age. I started the week with the goal of learning about what makes an effective RightsCon session. I managed to get to 15 sessions, one side group meetup and […]


WeekNotes for July 24th, 2020

Rethinking a Festival Finished a series of four workshops to help the Institute for Economic Justice adjust the Rethinking Economics for Africa Festival online. We created stakeholder journeys – mapping out the experience before, during and after the virtual Festival. We then established the various roles and guides that would […]


Weeknotes for July 17th, 2020

This week we started a series of four workshop sessions with the Institute for Economic Justice to help them strategise on how to bring the Rethinking Economics for Africa Festival online. It’s bringing together several pieces of expertise that I’ve developed through self-funded projects like the Network-Centric Resources Project and […]


Weeknotes for July 10th 2020

Things I was grateful for this week: RightsCon & TechChange Teams This week, I started working with the RightsCon & TechChange teams on providing support to facilitators who will be delivering virtual sessions for RightsCon‘s first online convening from July 27th to 31st. The first task was adding guidance to […]


Weeknotes for July 3rd, 2020

Things I was grateful for this week. Heather Leson sharing this article on teams. It’s been great to be part of The Solferino Digital Team, with Heather, Laurent Fernandez and Shaun Hazeldene. these past few months, and I wholeheartedly agree with a lot of whats in the article. When you […]


Weeknotes for June 26th, 2020

Network Check-Ins & TEST, TEST, TEST, A first-ever Check-In meeting for the network developing around The (Virtual) Session Design Lab. An intended side effect of the Lab is for participants to start to rely on each other for inputs and feedback on their sessions, which is the perfect starting point […]


Weeknotes for June 19th, 2020

Breathing again with a focus on reflecting and planning. Reflecting Mor Rubinstein and I hosted a ‘social lunch’ for members of this 360Giving Data Champions Cohort as we wrap up this year’s programme. We also did a reflection on this year’s cohort with Mor getting us to respond to four […]


Weeknotes for June 12th, 2020

More Zoomies The primary focus this week was supporting a High-Level Convening on UN Counter-Terrorism and Human Rights on June 11th. Registration closed on the morning of the event with over 1000 registrants, and we ended up with around 600 people attending. I used the webinar module in Zoom for […]


Weeknotes for June 5th, 2020

Had a chance to catch my breath this week. Breathing is a good thing. Wrapping Up Data Champions However, I was so busy last week that I even forgot to mention a workshop I’d done in the previous weeknote. Mor Rubinstein and I had run a Data for Leadership Workshop […]


Weeknotes for May 29th, 2020

Every week I seem to push new boundaries in terms of intensity, capacities and activities. Work with IFRC’s Solferino Academy is providing lots of meaningful learning opportunities for our team, Laurent Fernandez, Shaun Hazeldene & HeatherLeson, and I’m grateful. On Wednesday, we ran a virtual event on Health Innovation & […]


Weeknotes for May 22nd, 2020

This week: lots of planning, some outputs and a productive workshop for CESR Strategy Canvas for Data Champions I am working with Mor Rubinstein at 360 Giving on two workshops to wrap up this cohort of Data Champions working in UK Grantmaking Institutions. These workshops will focus on Data 4 […]


Weeknotes for May 15th, 2020

Had a four day week this week as Friday, May 15th was my 10th Wedding Anniversary, but it still felt like a full-on week. As expected, during the ECNL virtual workshop on “The Unheard Voice of Civil Society in EU Policy on AI” we danced around the definition of AI. […]


Weeknotes for May 8th, 2020

On Monday, as part of IFRC’s Solferino Academy,  Laurent Fernandez, and I ran a ‘How to use Zoom’ Skillshare for National Societies in the Americas. We broke the participants up into small groups to discuss their challenges and generate a list of questions in a google doc. We then spent […]


Weeknotes for May 1st, 2020

Thanks to Heather Leson, I managed to join a meeting to share our experiences running large virtual workshops for IFRC’s Solferino Academy with staff from Zoom. The Zoom representatives explained how they have frozen developing features for the app for the last 90 days as they focused on improving security. […]


Weeknotes for April 24th, 2020

“The world needs to speak with one voice” This from Francesco Rocca, President of the International Federation of the Red Cross/Red Crescent (IFRC) Societies in response to a question about lessons learned from this pandemic. I ended last week being part of the support team for a virtual press briefing […]


Weeknotes for April 17th 2020

Another whirlwind week, can’t believe it was only four days. The main focus of the week was work with Shaun Hazeldine & Heather Leson for IFRC’s Solferino Academy to support a 60 person virtual meeting that needed simultaneous translation into four languages: Arabic, English, French, and Spanish. We worked with […]


Weeknotes for April 10th, 2020

The top three pieces of advice I’d give anyone looking to run a large online meeting. Test, test, test and then do an additional test. The focus of the week was prep for an online digital volunteer gathering for the Red Cross Red Crescent Societies and co-hosting with Shaun Hazeldine […]


Weeknotes for April 3rd, 2020

As the new normal becomes not so new and this might be our normal for quite some time ahead… Monday starts with more inquiries on helping to design and facilitate virtual meetings that were meant to be face to face. The tone ‘can we do this?’ is changing to ‘we […]


Weeknotes for March 27th, 2020

I reached capacity this week. I don’t think I have ever worked so hard. And the remarkable bit was that I did it all from home. Monday started with an online discussion with UK Grantmaker Data Champions on ‘Getting and Finding Quality Data‘ for 360 Giving. A significant point of […]