I write today to introduce myself as the new manager of this Google Group.
My name is Dustin and I’m glad to be part of the team working on the future
of the Principles for Digital Development.
TL;DR:* I’m excited about the Principles and the community-driven process
that got us here. We will launch an updated digitalprinciples.org website
(with the new content that many of you contributed feedback on) and
community forum on October 12th in Tanzania. It will be good. I’ll be in
touch soon with details. Hit me with questions.*
A bit about me. For the past seven years, I’ve worked in the US Capitol
on a variety of ICT4D and digital communications projects – with
organizations like FHI 360, Abt Associates, and the Locus Coalition – and
for USAID, DFID, and CDC projects. I’m not a development sector lifer: I
worked in journalism in Jordan covering the business beat, in Madagascar as
an NGO partnerships manager, and in Sonoma County, CA as an architect’s
I’m excited about the future of this community. There are a number of
interesting developments on the immediate horizon. On October 12th, we are
launching new Principles content on the re-vamped digitalprinciples.org
website at a launch event in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. We’ve developed quite
a bit of new content (that many of you have reviewed along the way – thank
you!), and reflected deeply on the sort of online community we would like
to build to support the work going forward.
We are migrating this group from Google Groups to a new Discourse
platform. Why? Because we envision this space being more than a listserv,
and more of an online community where questions can be answered and a real
engagement will be normal. Discourse, the open source platform, will still
send messages to your email inbox, but will also enable more specialized
conversations. It will support voting, rich search, emojis, and the mobile
experience will be a big improvement. Don’t worry about the fate of your
current message history (if you worry about that kind of thing). We will
import everything to the new site, and give directions on how to claim your
You will hear from me regularly over the next few weeks. I will be asking
for some help. I will need a hearty group of 10-20 of you to get an early
look at the new platform, provide your feedback, and suggest improvements.
If interested, please get in touch here or via email. We will also be
presenting a few key questions that will help our newcomers get oriented,
feed into the Tanzania launch event, and hopefully wrestle with the
thornier problems of implementing the Principles.
Final thought: Thanks for caring. Please hit me up with any questions or
concerns you’d like to share. Our aim is to build a helpful online space so
we can learn from each other, aid with problems, and have a little fun
along the way.
Community Manager, The Principles for Digital Development