Mediating Boundaries: traversing the landscapes of online communities of practice

Hosted by London College of Communication, University of the Arts London and JISC Advance: Business and Community Engagement

  • Location: London College of Communication, Elephant and Castle
  • Date: Wednesday 12th May 2010, 10:00-17:00
  • Keynote Speaker: Etienne Wenger
  • Conference Tag: #BCECOP

The rapid advancement of web technologies, including web 2.0 and social media, has created the potential for effective collaborative networks to emerge. Using live web conferencing, social networking platforms, blogs, twitter and other emergent technologies, constellations of communities of practice can develop, overlapping and interacting in exciting, innovative and extraordinary ways. At the same time developments in social learning theory provide us with conceptual tools to help us make sense of these possibilities and leverage them more systematically.

This one-day conference will explore how technology can mediate and enhance the relationship between the academic community and the wider world. With a keynote presentation and interactive workshop from Dr Etienne Wenger, we will examine how online environments can act as boundary spaces for engagement, collaboration, and innovation between academics, practitioners, industry partners and other stakeholders, enabling informal and formal networks and communities of practice to emerge in ways impossible to imagine even just a few years ago.

Presentations will include a keynote and group workshop from Dr Wenger on Boundaries of Communities of Practice, Brian McCaul of the University of Leeds, Paul Lowe of the University of the Arts London (UAL), the JISC Trialling Collaborative Tools for Business and Community Engagement project team, and the Knowledge Transfer Partnership team from UAL. The day will also include networking opportunities and a participatory ‘ideas café’ session to explore emergent themes from the day.


  • 10:00-10:30 Registration and refreshments
  • 10:30-10:45 Welcome & Introduction
  • 10:45-11:30 Keynote from Dr Etienne Wenger: Boundaries of Communities of Practice
  • 11:30-12:30 Building Communities and Networks: lessons from Business and Community Engagement. Featuring three prestentations from current community building projects (see below).
  • 12:30-12.45 Response from Etienne Wenger
  • 12:45-13:00 Introduction to Ideas Café
  • 13:00-15:00 Ideas Café & Networking Lunch
  • 15:00-16:45 Debating the Issues – Group Workshop, debate and discussion led by Etienne Wenger around issues arising from the Ideas Café and moring presentations.
  • 16:45-17:00 Final remarks
  • 17:00-18:00 Drinks reception, kindly provided by the UAL Creative Industries KTN

Building Communities and Networks: lessons from BCE – Speakers

Paul Lowe (UAL) will outline an ongoing project to build a virtual community of practice called OPEN-i, an online learning and networking space for the photojournalism industry.

Brian McCaul (University of Leeds) will address key issues affecting the take-up of social media, based upon the lessons learned from an ongoing project to develop the Leeds Innovation Network.

Jeremy Davenport (UAL) will provide an overview of the Creative Industries KTN’s (Knowledge Transfer Network) work in supporting the development of technology driven innovation across the Creative Industries.


Registration is now closed for this conference. To view the event details on Eventbrite please visit: