Past Events

Aspiration Co-Organizes Asia Source II

Event Date(s): 
January 22, 2007 to January 30, 2007

Aspiration traveled to Indonesia to oversee the agenda and facilitation at Asia Source II: Free and Open Source Technologies for NGOs (Non Government Organisations) and SMEs (Small and Medium Enterprises). The event took place in Sukabumi, near Jakarta. The Asia Source II blog provided detailed accounts of camp life.

Aspiration partnered with fellow event organizers International Open Source Network, Tactical Technology Collective, InWEnt, ICT Watch, and Yayasan AirPutih. The event was targeted at those practitioners actively working with the NGO or SME sectors in South Asia and South East Asia, with focus on service and advocacy NGOs, educational organisations, NGO resource centres, community centres, health information organisations, SMEs and SME support agencies. Over 100 sessions were scheduled, including learning tracks on:

  • Open Publishing and Broadcasting: Communication Strategies and Writing Effectively, Graphic Design, Web Tools (Content Management Systems, Blogs, Wikis) and Audio/Video Production and Streaming
  • Alternative Hardware and Access: Refurbished Hardware, Thin Clients, Hardware Hacking, Wireless Solutions and Community Radio
  • FOSS Implementation and Migration: Moving an NGO or SME from proprietary software to FOSS. Participatory Design and Planning, Evaluating FOSS, End-User Training and Support Techniques, Dealing with Desktops, Proxy Server, Firewall, Mail Server and Groupware
  • Information Management: Mapping Information Sources and Requirements. Best practices for Creating Specifications, Information Architecture and User Interface Design

As with all Aspiration-facilitated events, Asia Source II was built around a participant-driven agenda, peer-to-peer knowledge and skill sharing, and capacity building through strengthened social networks.

Session proceedings were chronicled on a local wiki. Asia Source II is the latest in Source Events series, which has included Summer Source, Africa Source I and II, and Asia Source I.

Aspiration leads facilitation at Telecentre Leaders' Forum in Benin, West Africa

Event Date(s): 
November 27, 2006 to December 2, 2006

Aspiration was delighted to lead the facilitation at the Africa Telecentre Leaders' Forum 2006. The event convened telecentre practitioners, network leaders, researchers and development partners from across Africa and took place at Centre Songhai in Port Novo in Benin from November 28 - December 2, 2006. The Africa TLF was jointly organized by Centre Songhai, IDRC, Microsoft, OKN, SDC and UNESCO under the banner of

The primary goals of the event were to

  • Develop a spirit of networking, learning and collaboration within the African telecentre movement.
  • Provide leaders of telecentres and other Community ICT Centres a chance to gain practical skills and learn about new services that can be used in their own networks and telecentres.
  • Search for common solutions to challenges faced by African Community ICT Centres such as sustainability, content, services, connectivity and impact.
  • Encourage the development of concrete collaborative activities that offer solutions to these challenges.

Aspiration guided a 1-day facilitator training before the main event, and then collaborated with a team of 12 facilitators from all walks of telecentre life as they guided discussions and collaborative sessions. Interactive SpeekGeeks and Spectrograms kept the proceedings lively, and the agenda content was designed in large part by the participants at the Forum. The event was facilitated in a fully bilingual format, balancing French and English discourse and demonstration.

Complete information about the event can be found on the web site.
This is a Flickr badge showing public photos from Flickr tagged with AfricaTLF. Make your own badge here.


Event Date(s): 
November 17, 2006

The Sunlight Foundation invited Aspiration to design and facilitate the agenda for their first-ever Open(Data)/Open[Gov] meeting. The event, co-hosted by the Mitchell Kapor Foundation, brought together a diverse group of 60 practitioners focused on various aspects of making government data more open to citizens. The group spent the day wrestling with the challenges and opportunities facing activists and technologists working to open up and demystify publicly available data for the average web users. Sessions addressed how to create successful developer networks, how to facilitate open exchange between Congress and citizens, and a look at various APIs, microformats and possible mashups. Also addressed were gaps in existing data sets, sustainable business models for this type of work, and the unintended consequences of transparency.

FLOSS Usability Sprint III

Event Date(s): 
October 27, 2006 to October 29, 2006

Aspiration and Blue Oxen co-organized FLOSS Usability Sprint III, which took place October 27-29, 2006 at Google in Mountain View, California. Many thanks to Leslie Hawthorn, Rick Boardman and Google for hosting the event!

Programmers, usability practitioners, project managers, and users gathered to discuss methodologies for improving the usability of Free/Libre/Open Source Software (FLOSS) and to apply those processes towards specific projects. The goals were two-fold: To improve the usability of the participating projects, and to catalyze greater shared understanding and ongoing collaboration between the usability and open source communities. Aspiration’s own Social Source Commons platform was one of the focal projects, along with Drupal, HyperScope, Socialtext Open and Sustainable Civil Society.

For complete info about the proceedings see To see pictures from the event click here.

California eAdvocacy Training Road Show II

Event Date(s): 
September 25, 2006 to September 28, 2006

Aspiration took its open eAdvocacy curriculum back on the road to nonprofits in Los Angeles and San Francisco. The two-day “Web Sites For Advocacy and Community Organizing: Basics, Essentials, and Best Practices” training covers web essentials, development process, design essentials, developing web strategy, as well as best practices for privacy, and security. The trainings were designed to enable grassroots nonprofits to learn effective process and tactics in using email in their campaigns and strategic work. The training materials have been prepared by Aspiration in partnership with Radical Designs, and funded by the Community Technology Foundation of California. All materials are being distributed under Creative Commons license.

AdvocacyDev III

Event Date(s): 
July 31, 2006 to August 2, 2006

Aspiration was delighted to host AdvocacyDev III from July 31 to August 2 in Oakland, California. The third annual convening of developers, organizers, and activists working with open source tools for online activism brought together 45 practitioners for discussion, collaboration, and trainings. Proceedings were logged on the AdvocacyDev wiki. Electric Embers hosted their second annual Most Excellent AdvocacyDev Veggie-Friendly BBQ Shindig Sessions included...

  • Show and tell on all the latest open source eAdvocacy platforms and tools, including the latest from CivicSpace/CiviCRM, Radical Designs Activist Mobilization Platform (AMP), GoodStorm, and others.
  • ScoutSeven's DotOrganize project, and the findings of their research on needs and gaps in nonprofit eAdvocacy and database capabilities.
  • MobileVoter shared the latest in Cell phone/SMS organizing techniques, and joined in discussion on how to better integrate SMS support into open source eAdvocacy tools.
  • PICnet demo'd their brand-new NonprofitSoapbox platform, which integrates other open source tools and platforms.
  • Emerging technologies: Discussions of the role of VOIP and the Asterisk platform, and How-To's on activist blogging.
  • Prototyping new advocacy tools: Using Ruby on Rails to do rapid web development.
  • Building and configuring CivicSpace/CiviCRM sites
  • In-depth Drupal development session: Module development and theming
  • Business Development: How to pay the bills and work on advocacy development projects)
  • eAdvocacy Capacity Building: What trainings, documentation and knowledge sharing is necessary to grow the pool of practitioners in the eAdvocacy space. What is needed to better empower local organizers with local causes to use these tools?
  • Open standards and open API's (Application Programmer Interfaces) for eAdvocacy: what's needed to allow better data sharing, pooling of legislative and other public data, and enable feature interoperability between platforms? What eAdvocacy “mashups” are useful and possible?
  • Email Deliverability: While features and functionality of open source advocacy platforms continue to grow, deliverability of associated email blasts continues to decrease as service providers raise spam barriers and network neutrality is threatened.
  • Usability: how can online activist tools be made friendlier and more accessible for organizers and activists?
  • Trainings and skillshares on various platforms, tactics, and techniques.

The event took place at East Bay Community Foundation Conference Center in Downtown Oakland.

Open Curriculum Convergence

Event Date(s): 
June 12, 2006 to June 13, 2006

Aspiration provided facilitation at this convening of open curriculum practitioners. The goal of the gathering was to discuss better approaches to peer production and collaborative development in the open curriculum space. This initial meeting allowed participants to share perspectives why they care about open curriculum, to map out what’s working and what’s not, posit visions and plans for open curriculum efforts, and zoom in on common ideas.

California eAdvocacy Training Road Show

Event Date(s): 
May 16, 2006 to May 19, 2006

Aspiration took its open eAdvocacy curriculum on the road to nonprofits all over California for a week of trainings in Sacramento, Los Angeles, San Diego and San Francisco. The one-day “Email For Advocacy and Community Organizing: Basics, Essentials, and Best Practices” training covers email campaigns, how to write effective email campaign messages, tracking open rates and responses, how to manage and sustain email lists, as well as best practices for privacy, security, and avoiding “spammer” status. The trainings were designed to enable grassroots nonprofits to learn effective process and tactics in using email in their campaigns and strategic work. The training materials have been prepared by Aspiration in partnership with Radical Designs and ScoutSeven, and funded by the Community Technology Foundation of California. All materials are being distributed under Creative Commons license.

LiveWire Summit

Event Date(s): 
April 20, 2006 to April 21, 2006

This two-day meeting, convened in partnership with SourceWatch , brought together a broad range of strategists, organizers and implementors working in online strategy and advocacy. Participants included staff and allies from SourceWatch, True Majority, Radical Designs, Democracy in Action, CitizenSpeak, Scout Seven, Greenpeace, Ruckus Society, SEIU, and others who met to discuss how to better get online activism tools into the hands of local activists. A range of capacity building concepts were brainstormed and discussed, from documentation to mentoring to turnkey services.

Shuttleworth Foundation Kusasa Project Sprint

Event Date(s): 
April 11, 2006 to April 13, 2006

Aspiration designed the agenda and facilitated this convening of educators and technologists meeting to discuss new approaches to teaching analytical skills through computer programming in the South African educational context. The goal was to consider how to develop a self taught, peer mentored program, which can be effectively evaluated without expert supervision, and to provide tools for analysis that will be general useful across the range of disciplines being taught at any given age. A range of leading thinkers, including Alan Kay, Guido Van Rossum, and Mark Shuttleworth, and a range of practitioners in computer software instruction met for 2 days to collaboratively advise the Foundation on project scope and direction.


Subscribe to Events