Fostering learning and collaboration among BMGF WSH Partners in India (Dasra)

  • Dasra
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Fostering learning and collaboration among BMGF WSH Partners in India

Our organization (Dasra) works on a BMGF grant to engage the BMGF-funded portfolio of Indian partners in the urban sanitation space. We primarily work on:

1. Creating a community of practice
2. Building capacity among grantee organizations
3. Amplifying work done by grantees to multiple stakeholders

Further details about our project can be found here in the SuSanA project database.

Resources we have worked on that may be of use to forum members include:

1. A website (Chorus) we have built to enable partners to connect. We plan to build this website out into a knowledge repository capturing knowledge in the sector, and welcome inputs from members on this forum.
2. An infographic on ODF and ODF++
3. A booklet explaining the basics of FSM, which can be used as an advocacy tool
4. Our YouTube channel with videos we have created for advocacy and awareness

We look forward to hearing from forum members who may be working on similar projects across the world, and hope we can collaborate in the future!
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  • arno
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Re: Fostering learning and collaboration among BMGF WSH Partners in India

Dear Sanaya Sinha
Thanks for this important entry on the Forum.

I can see DASRA playing an important catalyst role in India when it comes to learning and sharing of results within the sanitation sector. Your programme is ambitious. I noticed most of the material is on the Chorus website. Is this website easily found when people are searching for sanitation information? The search term "Chorus" may prove misleading and a little abstract.

I see Chorus works well as a yellow pages to identify the partners. I couldn't however find the descriptions of the projects each partner is carrying out. Nor could I find any reports from the partners. Can you provide some guidance?

I can see the Task Forces being very useful and several meetings have been held. Under resources for each Task Force there were some reports to be found but only under a few of the Task Forces. These documents are buried in Google drive and DropBox folders and it isn't clear whether these are the results of the work funded by BMGF or from other relevant activities. Will it be possible to curate this material so that it comes to life and is found higher up in the Chorus website?

Is there a communications strategy that will continue these efforts beyond 2018 when the 3-yr BMGF support terminates? It will take longer than this first period to create the community of practice. I find the Task Forces particularly relevant. Will it be possible to bring in other partners from across India than just those funded by BMGF?

You are encouraged to use the SuSanA Forum to help develop the "community of practice" and dissemination of knowledge that has been started. Any reports you wish to highlight can be launched on the Forum as well. And we would entertain a few webinars by some of the partners.

We look forward to further updates over the next few months.

Regards

Arno Rosemarin PhD
Stockholm Environment Institute
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Current project affiliation: www.susana.org/en/resources/projects/details/127
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  • nityajacob
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  • Water Policy Analyst and Author; Moderator of the ISC-SuSanA India Chapter
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Re: Fostering learning and collaboration among BMGF WSH Partners in India

Hi Sanaya,

I would like to draw attention to a thematic discussion on ODF+ (etc) at this link forum.susana.org/swachh-bharat-abhiyan-i...-of-sanitation-india . You can take a look at some of the responses that would be relevant for this community.

Regards
Nitya
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  • Dasra
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Re: Fostering learning and collaboration among BMGF WSH Partners in India

Dear Arno,

Thank you for your detailed response to the post! Please find below some of the answers to your questions.

Chorus was initially created as a closed platform for Gates Foundation partners to connect with each other and share knowledge; we are in the process of opening out sections of the website to a broader audience, as a result of which you might have had restricted access to certain pages. Once we make the website public, we will look to identify which terms we can use to enable the website to appear in a Google search.

We are also in the process of creating a detailed knowledge taxonomy for the website, and hope to put this in place over the coming months; we will curate documents already on the website, as well as host other documents.

The Annual Partners Meet 2018 (a platform for Gates Foundation urban WSH grantees) concluded last week, with a focus on communications, institution building and technologies. We hope to work together with partners to craft a long term communications strategy for each partner organizations, as well as for the sector as a whole.

We are currently discussing the evolving role of Taskforces, and do intend to open up task force membership to external organizations over the coming year – stay tuned for further details!

Thank you,
Sanaya (Dasra)
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  • muench
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Re: Fostering learning and collaboration among BMGF WSH Partners in India

Dear Sanaya,

Thanks for your reply. How do you keep this funded beyond 2018, is there a second phase BMGF grant for you? The funding from BMGF that we (the SEI-led consortium) had for supporting knowledge management via SuSanA is ending this year, so I am always interested how others secure their funding for KM activities.
(Luckily, the SuSanA secretariat continues to be funded through money from the German ministry BMZ to GIZ; but it will be a lower level of ambition, e.g. my time was funded by the BMGF and that will stop)

Also, what did you mean by "creating a detailed knowledge taxonomy for the website"?

And how to do see that Chorus and the SuSanA forum and website could interlink with each other to create more synergies? My suggestions would be:
- Regulary posts by Dasra here on the forum to provide updates about your work
- For you to forward relevant reports that should be included in the SuSanA library to the secretariat (or link the two library if you are creating your own library?)
- Adding projects to the SuSanA project database (or if you prefer to have your own separate project database then to somehow provide a linkage from one to the other. The SuSanA project database looks like this: www.susana.org/en/knowledge-hub/projects/database )

What do you think?

Regards,
Elisabeth

Community manager and chief moderator of this forum
funded via SEI project until January 2019 ( www.susana.org/en/resources/projects/details/127 )

Dr. Elisabeth von Muench
Independent consultant located in Brisbane, Australia
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Twitter: @EvMuench
Sanitation Wikipedia project leader: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:WikiProject_Sanitation
My Wikipedia user profile: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:EMsmile
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  • Dasra
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Re: Fostering learning and collaboration among BMGF WSH Partners in India

Dear Elisabeth,

There is currently a hiatus on the development of the Chorus website as we consider our strategic priorities for 2019-2022. Chorus forms one part of our broader work, and considering that there has been limited uptake especially for the networking features, we may consider overhauling the entire site, focusing purely on knowledge management, or look to working with a partner to develop a more robus India-specific knowledge platform on FSSM.

The taxonomy refers to how the knowledge content on the potential website could be organized and structured, but as mentioned the development of the website is currently on a hiatus. We will keep SuSanA updated as we revisit Chorus, and in the meanwhile will keep everyone posted on new products and learnings from our side. We soon hope to share a practitioners’ DIY style guide on FSSM which we have been working on with our taskforce of partner organizations, working on technology.

Thank you,
Sanaya (Dasra)
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