Meeting Challenges in Knowledge Management

Facilitator: Lucie Lamoureux (November 1, 2010 @ 16:00hrs Paris Hall)
Knowledge Sharing Method: Peer Assist*

Peer Assistee 1: Mr.Vu Bang (Vietnam)

Eight (8) participants assisted Mr. Vu Bang to address his challenge.

Challenge outline:
  • Within the 2 years of project implementing, the existing method used to capture lesson learned or the best policies from the field is not an effective way
  • District level staffs are not motivated
  • They don't have enough writing skill to prepare documentation
  • No money allocated in the budget at all
  • People don't know about knowledge management
  • M&E officers main task is not knowledge management therefore no time to focus on the topic
  • Mr.Vu Bang is the only person at project level
Suggestions generated during the Peer Assist:
  • Use additional source like partner funding
  • Use money allocated for trainings
  • Incorporate into the Policy budget. Create the use of sources
  • KM officer coordinator should not do everything. It's a process of all stakeholders therefore make project director aware
  • Expose Knowledge Management and demonstrate how it can help
  • Prepare monthly newsletter including the lessons learned
  • Don't use M&E system for knowledge management; rather use it through field visits. Officer on the field visit can inform and send reporter or journals
  • Incorporate into different workshops conducted not only just IFAD projects. Also captures experiences, scaling up
  • Mainstream knowledge management when doing reflections
  • Carry out write shops. People come together as peers, work together or systemization
  • Bring knowledge to higher level (eg: Policy makers)
  • Best and worse experience should be documented and shared
  • Knowledge at different levels since different people uses different knowledge like Policy makers, Pack trainers, practitioners etc.
  • Identify and share case studies and make it a competition for raising money, opportunity etc.
  • Find a standalone KM activity /not represent as KM. eg: visit, workshop, writeshop,
  • Additional KM layer to output
  • Have external people or higher-ups involved temporarily
  • Embed KM and networking experiences in system as part of project design

Peer Assistee 2: Mr.Yinhong Sun (China)

Nine (9) participants assisted Mr. Yinhong Sun to overcome his challenges.

Challenge outline:
  • KM not in old country strategy– Now it is an ambition to develop in strategy component
  • Policy influence based on programme level
  • How to d
    esign a system that can serve the purpose at the programme level

Suggestions generated during the Peer Assist:
    • Select a person in charge of knowledge sharing but don't call it KM
    • Monitor what is happening at policy level
    • Identify 1 or 2 specific areas of focus
    • Important to be accepted as trustworthy plus influential. Make sure you have a reliable story to tell
    • Identify how to get knowledge out of the system and what is relevant to policy
    • Be specific on what you want to change. Set a target
    • Generate the evidence
    • Advocate to fight the system through civil society, through farmers
    • Look for partners who have the same concern and get together to raise the voice. Don't try to do it alone
    • Look for partners which are acknowledged by the government
    • Find out what is possible. Policy determination is the 1st step
    • Identify how to link to grant and investment
    • Coordinate with co-financing and technical funding institutions
    When Mr. Rudi Schuetz (Chief Technical Advisor) was questioned on how the session helped him as a participant, he responded:
    "The sharing is very effective because you share your questions and your problems with a group of practitioners from different countries generating different views. Sometimes later, whether you are at the same or higher level, you might need to face the same kind of difficulties. So the suggestions generated here are very relevant. People are very active and I like to hear different stories from different countries because at the end of the day I think we all are more or less facing the same kind of problem specifically on knowledge management."

    Mr. Vu Bang - one of the two peer assistees - said the session helped him in many ways but specifically in generating many suggestions for going forward in addressing his challenge. He felt that the diversity in the experiences shared were most useful especially in going back to the country or project. He believes that the new insights will significantly help him in his work.

    *A Peer Assist is a KS method with brings together individuals to share their experiences and knowledge on an identified issue, challenge or problem. It helps the "peer assistee" identify possible approaches or new lines of inquiry to deal with their challenge.