ouishare-metamaps mag thumb copy

Metamapping the OuiShare network

OuiShare is growing into an increasingly diverse, distributed and active community, and it’s clear that we need new tools and interfaces for making sense of our collaborative ecosystem. How can we move towards leveraging our different skills, experiences, capacities and passions to collaborate more effectively and make better decisions, individually and collectively? In a new OuiShare project, we’re working with Metamaps.cc to increase creative, connective and collective intelligence within our community.

Self-organization within distributed and horizontal communities like ours relies on sense-making processes to inform the ways that we coordinate, communicate and collaborate. Often it can be hard to get a high-level understanding of the community as it branches out into so many different areas of activity and interest. Sense-making is a very human process, to do with our own abilities as a collective to sort through all the streams of data and synthesize knowledge into actionable insights which we can base our decisions on. Luckily, new interfaces that amplify our sense-making capacity are emerging.

Screen shot 2015-01-29 at 11.31.19 AM

OuiShare groups


An evolving knowledge commons

This is why we’re excited to announce our mapping initiative in partnership with Metamaps.cc – a cutting edge knowledge visualization and real-time collaboration platform that enable communities to make better sense together. It’s a flexible platform useful in a variety of contexts – mapping out roles, responsibilities, and relationships within a community or organization, making sense of a really complex conversation or issue with many moving parts, or creating comprehensive strategies for systems change and innovation. All of this in an evolving knowledge commons, gardened and maintained by the community.

We see this project as a way to improve the visibility of relationships and connections, increase the volume of ideas, creativity and solutions, and optimize our capabilities around specific events, issues, topics, causes and projects. As a part of this, one of the goals is to grow a knowledge commons as a community, freely accessible to all who are interested or a part of OuiShare or related organizations, to build and expand upon, acting as a resource for existing members of our community as well as new ones. The knowledge will be available in creative commons.

Further, its important to note – we’re not creating this data in a silo – all data will be published in standardized formats that enable other tools and interfaces to use it easily.

Our aim with this is to:

  • get the widest picture overview of the OuiShare community in all its diversity
  • to create an easy way for people who want to get involved to find and connect with people and projects in the community
  • create more transparency into Connector’s projects, skills and interests
  • reveal hidden, implicit and latent cross-community connections within the network
  • synthesize insights through sense-making, to inform action and the evolution of our community!

This map will exist for all to explore, build upon and use to connect with more people in our community. So far, we’ve mapped out the foundations of the OuiShare network – the different knowledge groups, OuiShare projects, community locations and connectors – but that’s just the start!

Screen shot 2015-01-29 at 11.25.35 AM



>>See the map here

By metamapping our network, we can see about strengthening cross-community connections and collaboration through identifying key leverage points and common affinities. Not only that, but by contributing to the growing knowledge commons on Metamaps.cc, we align with other communities, initiatives and organizations who are doing the same, enabling us to think, learn and act more effectively together!

Start weaving with us

Over the coming months in the leadup to OuiShare Fest, we’ll be proposing different mapping activities and challenges to expand our awareness and reflect on the evolution of our community. We hope you’ll join us.

For more information on getting involved as a designated knowledge weaver for your local community or knowledge group, visit the project page, or contact Jocelyn or Ishan by emailing team [at] metamaps.cc with the subject line “ouishare weaver”.