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NGI webinar on community building

Community engagement for open source projects

This free online event on September 7 from 10 to 11:45 CEST NGI Zero together with NGI TETRA is focused on community engagement for open source projects. Community engagement expert Johanna-Mai Riisma will discuss relevant insights and free software activist and NGI0-mentor hellekin will share and discuss experiences of developers how to engage with contributors and users.

Communities are the core of all open source endeavours. A vibrant group of interested people trying out your work, offering useful critique, sometimes fixing a problem all by themselves is what defines open, collaborative work. But building, growing and maintaining such a group of active thinkers and contributors is by no means an easy feat, especially for project maintainers who usually already have a lot on their plate. That is why NGI Zero is happy to announce a freely accessible webinar focused entirely on community building for open source projects funded by the Next Generation Internet initiative.

The Next Generation Internet initiative covers various funding programs for research and development that makes online technology more resilient, trustworthy and sustainable. NLnet foundation funds hundreds of open source and open hardware-projects through the NGI Zero grant program and the NGI Zero consortium, a world-class coalition of not-for-profit organizations supporting researchers and developers with their expertise on security, code quality, accessibility, localisation, pacakaging, diversity, as well as community building. NGI TETRA is a business acceleration program where a network of consultants and experts offer support to NGI-funded projects to commercialize or build a business around their work.

During this online webinar NGI will offer two perspectives on community building. In the first part you will hear about community-led growth as a strategy for open source organizations and companies. Several ways are discussed how community members can help you build and promote your business. The second part is the experience sharing session that starts with the idea that the upbeat discourse of 'innovation' would like people to think that the revolution comes from a quacking duck sitting in an armchair. But as global tensions arise, complexity begs to differ. This session will highlight the difference between community and the collective.


Johanna-Mai Riisma is a community engagement consultant for nonprofits, causes and community-driven businesses. She has a decade of experience as a volunteer coordinator for large teams at international and Estonian organizations. She is also founder and CEO of Zelos, a goal-oriented community engagement app.

hellekin is a free software activist with almost three decades organizing grassroots events and virtual communities. He co-founded Petites Singularités in 2017 to apply 50+ years of knowledge researching collective practices and free technology production. He currently mentors developers within the NGI0 consortium and coordinates the Distributed Replicated Edge Agency Machine (DREAM) project (NGI Pointer).

Want to know more? No prior registration is needed, simply join the online webinar on Tuesday September 7 at 10:00 CEST. The event is organized using BigBlueButton, an open source webconferencing framework which is actively supported by NGI Zero to add end-to-end encrypted chat.

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