(Link Now Available) Opportunity for Public Comment: New Principles for Digital Development Content and Resources

The Digital Impact Alliance (DIAL) is excited to announce the opportunity for public review and comment on the new Principles for Digital Development content prior to its formal publication in October. The content is designed for implementing organizations and is the product of an extensive content development process, including focus group discussions and interviews with the digital development community.

Now, we need your input. Between August 28 and September 6, DIAL invites you to review newly developed content related to the Principles and share your feedback. You can find the documents here.

During the review period, we hope you and your teams will take the opportunity to read and provide feedback on new guidance for the Principles (modeled after the project lifecycle) and a few how-to guides we have developed. Included will be:

  • Principles content (9 documents) — Updated guidance for each Principle, modeled around the Project Lifecycle. We received specific feedback from the community on the desire for guidance to be structured in this manner, so we represented both the project and software development lifecycles, simplifying them to four stages: Analyze and Plan; Design and Develop; Deploy and Implement; Monitor and Evaluate.
  • How-to guides (5 documents) — These how-to guides will serve as additional resources for implementers to dive deeper into subjects requested by the community.
  • Case study template (1 document) — We received feedback from endorsers that it was sometimes a struggle to find the time to write their case studies; in response, we have crafted a template to make the process easier and hopefully streamline how case studies about the Principles are written.

You should feel free to review as few or as many of these documents as you would like. Any insights you have will be valuable to us. We ask that you review these documents while considering the following:

  • Content — is the information useful, actionable, relevant?
  • Tone and language — are the documents easy to understand, and will a non-native English speaker have any difficulty with what is being communicated?
  • Flow of documents — does the structure of each document make sense?
  • Level of detail — is the content too complex, or too simple?
  • Accuracy of information — is anything clearly wrong? What is missing? What can be added?
  • Representation of your experiences — does the content accurately reflect your experiences, and are these documents that you and your colleagues would find useful when planning your next program?
  • Resources — are we missing key reports, toolkits, blog posts that would be useful to include? What are they?
  • Recommendations for future topics/ areas to address

Please be candid – let us know what we’re missing, what you would like to see in the future and direct us to any additional tools or resources that you know of and would be of value for us to share with the community. This is an opportunity to preview the content, share your own experiences and be involved in the development of Principles guidance that impacts technology and development communities around the globe. All of this work will culminate in a re-launch of the Principles website on October 12 during an event in Tanzania.  

In 2016, the Digital Impact Alliance (DIAL) was named steward of the Principles for Digital Development. As steward, DIAL facilitates the increased adoption of the Principles into technology-supported programs. We are responsible for introducing new users to the Principles, promoting their adoption, producing content that will be relevant and useful to the audiences the Principles serve and for continuing to foster the community that has built up around them.

Background – DIAL as Steward

Since being named stewards, we conducted a series of interviews and user feedback workshops to determine what resources were needed most urgently by the digital development community. From these sessions, DIAL found that the greatest gap lied in resources for implementers in developing countries to make the Principles more practical, actionable and tangible. Specifically, we sought to address the following needs:

  • Tools and resources that clearly explain how implementers could take lessons learned from others and apply it to their own programs and products to improve organizational practices and development outcomes.
  • Case studies that highlight successful implementation of the Principles into existing programs across sectors and geographies.
  • Dynamic Principles for Digital Development website that it is more interactive and information would be easier to find

In response to these needs, DIAL has developed new guidance for each Principle, including actionable guidance on how to apply the Principles at each stage of the project lifecycle, and additional resources such as how-to guides and case studies focused on the application of the Principles.

Big things are on the way in the next few months for the Principles community. This content review is the first in a series of opportunities for you to get engaged with the work. In addition to revamping the website and producing this content, DIAL is also preparing to migrate the Digital Principles Community group from Google Groups to a community forum. More details to come soon.

Do you have comments or questions? Email us at: PrinciplesAdmin@digitalimpactalliance.org