Hatch your project ideas at the Project/Partnership Incubator Session

This blog was originally published on the WebWise 2013 blog.

By Sharon Leon

Everyone who works in museums, libraries, and archives has ideas for work that they and their institutions could be doing, if only they had the time and energy to put all of the pieces in place. The Thursday afternoon Project/Partnership Incubator sessions for WebWise 2013 will offer attendees exactly that opportunity.

As part of this year’s hands-on format, we are treating our time on Thursday afternoon as an opportunity to incubate project and collaboration ideas, paying specific attention to IMLS’s Strategic Goals. Working with a facilitator and other WebWise participants in small groups, attendees will spend the afternoon developing an emerging project idea into a two to three page project précis that can serve as a stepping stone to setting up formal collaborations and pursuing funding opportunities. At the same time, group members will have a chance to learn from one another and their facilitator about the elements of project planning that have contributed to successful work.

During three hours of small group work, participants will actively participate in a project planning process, beginning with communicating the need for the work to project stakeholders. Next, groups will work through the process of developing a realistic project plan and scope.  In a workshop setting, participants will identify the necessary steps to locate and foster relationships with potential collaborators in ways that have been proven to result in stronger proposals and more robust projects and partnerships. Finally, the groups will work on pitching their projects to funding sources.

As the culmination of this guided work, attendees will draft a précis that includes four sections:

  •    The Problem (Need)
  •    The Opportunity (Innovation)
  •    The Plan (How)
  •    The Team (Why Us)

The draft précis generated during incubator sessions will position participants to move forward with building partnerships with other institutions or for pursuing funding.

So, bring to WebWise 2013 those project ideas that you and your institution have been talking about but never seem to have enough time to develop.  During the Thursday Project /Partnership Incubator sessions you will find time, resources, and even potential collaborators as you develop strong, innovative initiatives in libraries, archives, and museums!

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