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Dear Friends,

As we hope to invite the communities in Mauritius to the excitement of a Knowledge Fair early next year, we seek your inputs on the two following areas to begin with!

1. We would like to hear from you how you would describe a Knowledge Fair and what excites you when you think of one.

2. We would like to explore whether we can create a glimpse into it, from experiences across the world. It would be great to have something like a short video on this with clips from other videoes, personal responses, stories, photos etc? any ideas on this? Form and content?

We would love to have help on this. 

Sanghamitra and Joke.

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Knowledge Fair for me is a space where people come to share and learn on a particular issue. People are more likely to share if the atmosphere is non-judgemental and appreciative and the process is participatory. The sharing comes from the heart and the energy flow is very uplifting as hierarchies do not seem to matter. I remember a quote from Boris who used to work in the private sector. He said during the Global Learning Festival in Chennai- I have learned so much from the sex workers...about resilience of sex workers. I find it hard to deal with trying times but sex workers bravely face challenges every moment of their life

The challenge in facilitation of Knowledge Fair is to capture the learning in a form which can be used later. 

Here are some photo albums which might give you a glimpse of Knowledge Fairs








A knowledge fair gives a forum, a voice, a recognition of experiences and efforts. It creates a joint feeling regarding certain challenges communities are facing. It even gives an opportunity to celebrate ! 


Here is a resource from Knowledge management community- KM4Dev. Thanks Sophie!

Sophie Treinen At FAO we have produced a good practice fact sheet based on several events:

The objective of this good practice fact sheet is to help anyone organizing a knowledge share fair . Enjoy!

How interesting. Rituu, I think a space where people come to share and learn on a particular issue is a Deliberative Forum. I think a Knowledge Fair is a space where groups, organisations, businesses and individuals can share knowledge. I think it is good to encourage people to consider an interactive display, where they are not stuck behind a table but able to engage with Fair participants. They are not selling their service but sharing their knowledge and ideas. What a difference space that would be!

Now, I've said all that off the top of my head. Now I'm going to look at the photos Rituu has put up to see how that compares. Good luck.

Okay, I can see my idea is different to the photos. Still I like the idea where people can display their knowledge and ideas to many interested people. I think a lot of great conversations would come out of that and prompt a lot of good ideas. I'm going to think about it some more. Thanks Sanhamitra

Here is the transcript of a video clip with Jean-Louis that I recorded a long time ago: 

 "At the Knowledge Fair in Curitiba, people were surprised that, all of a sudden, that this woman coming from a 60,000 city , Manacapuru, somewhere in the Amazon, could sit with the big city of Sao Paolo and have something to bring to them.

 The man from Sao Paolo said “At the beginning we thought, 'What is this lady going to tell us?' She’s coming from the jungle. We then both realised that we are both working in jungles. Hers is one of trees and ours is one of concrete. But we have got very interested in some of her ideas. We are going to see how we can implement them in our context.”

 So yes, she must be happy to be able to contribute to policy and strategy in Sao Paolo on the basis of her experience. I was reflecting, and I am still reflecting on this. And I asked the question to Dr Pravet. And Dr Pravet told me 'Jean-Louis, you give people the chance to learn from THEM, that gives THEM dignity. And that generates happiness."

For me, the last paragraph begins to answer your second question.

You can find more detailed clips and discussion on this page on the original version of Blended Learning:

There is a lot more discussion of Knowledge Fairs, Knowledge Assets and Story Telling in the second version of Blended Learning. Here is a place to start:

Here is the site we produced following the Knowledge Fair in Chennai:

My personal hope is that a Knowledge Fair can be the starting point for gathering and organising the shared experiences of communities in the form of a Knowledge Asset. The joy of sharing is wonderful. What is harder is using that shared wisdom for the benefit of the larger community (those who aren't at the Knowledge Fair). 

That feels very blunt and direct. It is not meant to be. Happy to talk and to think more. 


Thanks , Phil! Imissed a lot of these things when I scanned through Ning! I got to led to something else though.... the Knowledge Assets part! an din connection with Knowledge fairs. I want to take in all and will request for some time after a week to talk...


Another response from Sophie Trienen.

Hi Rituu
See also the video on sharefairs - “How do you organize a knowledge share fair in the Sahel region?” : The film is inspired by the article « What you should know before organizing a knowledge share fair in the Sahel » by Sophie Treinen, which appeared in Knowledge Management for Development Journal, Vol.7, N°2, September 2011.9min 45sec. 1,245mb.
In English :
In French:
In Spanish:

- Mini-fair for the exchange of good practices during the inauguration of the info-training centre on inventory credit set up by the COPSA-C, in Founzan, Burkina Faso in December 2012. Video in French. July 2013. 6min 28sec. 723 mb.

Dear Friends,

Thank you Rituu, Jan, Cindy, Sophie and Phil for the wonderful insights. It is getting really exciting, just listening to different ideas..... please keep it coming.... 


You've sparked something here. What if the question for a Knowledge Fair was to create a Knowledge Asset for an area rather than around a specific topic? For example, what is the idea you most want people to know about your work/ your area/ ? It would be interesting to see what people would share and what conversations would be generated. How on earth would that be facilitated? I think visual storytelling would be the key. Okay, have to do more research.

Cindy, Thanks for so many new ideas! will try and take it all in over the next couple of weeks!

Thank you all for this request and all the postings to it. I am in the middle of organizing a knowledge fair at my work situation. The last year 45 of my co-workers ( social workers) have been working in teams to empower and stimulate residents to participate in their own neighbourhood. At the end of october we are organizing a knowledge fair to learn from all our experiences. I read everything about Knowledge fairs on Ning, but still found myself  insecure about using this method, clingin too much on the tools i had to use.  Reading the experiences, watching the pictures and movies  really inspired me. I am now more able to be creative about the way of organizing. The most important aspect is learning from eachother, and there are a lot of creative ways to improve this!

I was wondering if anyone of you could share some experiences about  working with the Knowledge Asset. I am curious about that.



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