Archive:Notes on launching workgroups

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This page is archived. We have (or soon will have) a different method of getting workgroups started.

Arguably nothing quite like a Citizendium discipline workgroup has ever existed--a group of self-selecting people, led by specialists, devoted to developing a group of articles over which no one in particular has responsibility, but for which many people take responsibility.

Therefore, in lieu of a clear and well-understood roadmap for launching and building workgroups, here are some notes based on what we've learned so far and on our projected policy (note, we say projected policy, because with experience this could easily change):

  • Have a look at Biology Workgroup home page, Health Sciences Workgroup home page, History Workgroup home page, Engineering Workgroup home page and others, for examples of more-developed workgroup home pages. The purpose of these home pages is to serve as an orientation to people working in a certain discipline. What do such people need? (1) Inspiration/motivation. (2) An explanation of what's going on now. (2) An explanation of what's happened so far. (3) A roadmap, near-term and long-term. (4) As part of the roadmap, declarations from active participants about which articles they want to approve first. (Bear in mind that approval of an article assigned to a workgroup can't begin until there are at least five editors in an area.) (5) Other "to do" items can also be included as part of the roadmap.
  • It's probably preferable not to have a list of editors directly on the workgroup homepage, for the simple reason that there is another, more complete list living at, for example, Category:Health Sciences Editors. People on the latter list who are not listed on the workgroup homepage may feel that they have been left out of the "inner circle" and therefore not really so welcome--which is silly.
  • Things for participants, particularly editors, to create, are: a list of proposed subgroups, a welcome message aimed at new editors in your area, and perhaps a link to a version of this recruitment letter adapted for your discipline. And whatever else seems helpful!
  • Sometime we will settle upon workgroup management policy and adopt our first workgroup leaders. You need not wait until this happens to get to work. As an editor, taking initiative is a good thing.
  • New Workgroup Requests is where to go to discuss getting additional workgroups started. We will be adding a lot more workgroups in the near future. In the meantime, don't let lack of a target-on workgroup hold up your work! Just pick a workgroup that is reasonably close for now.

Feel free to add to this list.