History of UK Communities
Online and Partnerships Online
The ideas behind UK Communities
Online - and later Partnerships Online - developed in 1995 from
sources in the UK, US and Europe. Here's a summary of our
UK Communities Online developed from
a number of strands:
- Work by David Wilcox, Michael
Mulquin and Richard Stubbs as Partnerships
for Tomorrow (P4T) during
1995 and 1996, funded by BT Community Affairs, which included the
first Communities Online conference in October 1995.
- The decision to form an
Association for Community Networking,
taken at the Taos, New Mexico conference on community networking,
attended by David Wilcox of P4T in May 1996. This later led to
formation of the US Association
for Community Networking.
- Parallel work at Sheffield
University leading to the first UK community networking conference
in July 1996, which endorsed Communities Online, and the first Web
site about UK
community information networks.
A second conference was held in July 1997.
- Support from the BT
Laboratories team researching community
networks in holding the
first Communities Online meetings in June and July 1996, and
creating this Web site.
- Support from the IT
for All team at the UK
Department of Trade and Industry in 1996, then DTI funding for
Communities Online in
regeneration network to campaign
Development by P4T during 1995 and
early 1996 focussed on the idea of a Community Regeneration Network,
intended mainly for activists and professionals involved in urban and
rural regeneration projects. This was discussed at the Communities
Online conference at BT Centre in October 1995.
However, during 1996 it became clear that interest in local community
networks was growing, and that it was possible to find shared
interests in three overlapping areas
- Development of special interest
networks - like community regeneration
- Local community networks, often
inspired by US models
- Networking existing non-profit
organisations whose members would play major roles in both special
interest networks and local networks.
Between September 1996 and summer
1997 - when we started development of the Campaign - the main areas
of activity were as follows (some work is being developed by
Communities Online, some by Partneships Online) :
Details will be found on the the
Communities Online web site,
including news of support from the Department of Trade and Industry
of work from summer 1997 -
spring 1998 explains how Partnerships Online and UKCO developed as
two linked organisations.
about Partnerships Online