FORwiki:The FORwiki Community

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This FORwiki policy governs relations between members of the FORwiki Community, and members' rights. It is closely linked with the guidelines on the Resolution of Conflicts, and should not be interpreted in isolation one from another.


The Foresight Community of Practice

The FORwiki Community is built as a sub-set of the Foresight Community of Practice with the explicit goal of expanding until congruence is reached. Communities of practice have recently captured the spotlight of organizational management specialists. A key to developing powerful and coherent communities within communities of practice is developing expanding circles of inter-subjectivity, or common understanding, about how to be a community.

Following the work of Josh Plaskow’s [1], we will focus on ways in which one can expedite the building of such a community through stable membership. Plaskow indicates that what proves to be critical is building inter-subjectivity, i.e. shared understandings of the practice and community itself. Inter-subjectivity is the act of transcending the private and becoming part of the community, resulting in effective learning and activity. At the same time, breakdowns in inter-subjectivity are always catalysts for change, “holes” through which new views of reality are constructed and, as a result, the system evolves and preserves its identity.

Building the community involves developing a stronger sense of inter-subjectivity around its practice. This may consist of unveiling diverse understandings of the practice, its methods and tools. But it might also require developing new understandings of the practice itself, redefining thus community’s identity. Evan more critical is building inter-subjectivity about the concept of community. Learning how to operate as a community of practice and practicing how to operate collectively are necessary.

Building the community differs completely from creating the community.

If there is practice, there is community. The involvement of members or the depth of relationship in that community may be minimal, but the potential for community exists. Community building is not creating something from nothing; it is molding what exists and catalyzing previously unknown opportunities.

(Plaskow, 2006)

Building the FORwiki Community

The effort of building the FORwiki Community is grounded in two, inter-related types of activities: organizing the Bucharest Dialogues, and developing the FORwiki platform. These are critical community-building activities. They allow reflection on the current status of the Foresight Community of Practice, and how it can better achieve desired goals. Moreover, they are meant to introduce “novices” of the Foresight Community of Practice, as well as non-members, to the practice of Foresight.

In our approach, the FORwiki Community is being built by expanding the circles of inter-subjectivity. Inter-subjectivity grows in four phases:

  • The community’s development team, by defining philosophical underpinnings, development processes, and desired behaviors, creates a common understanding about what constitutes the FORwiki Community.
  • The development team works with a subset of the Foresight Community of Practice to develop a sense of inter-subjectivity concerning the fundamentals of Foresight, mostly during the mutual learning workshops of the Bucharest Dialogues. Their work is published in articles from the portal Clarifications of the FORwiki platform. They are also writing the initial form of the articles from the portal Practices.
  • The inter-subjectivity is further expanded to other members of the Foresight Community of Practice, invited to describe foresight exercises in the portal Narratives, and publish reviews in the portal Repository.
  • Finally, community members interacting with policy-makers and other persons interested by the practice of Foresight develop inter-subjectivity with non-members.


Adapted from Plaskow in Easterby-Smith & Lyles “Organizational Learning and Knowledge Management”

20 Commandments of the FORwiki Covenant

A member or non-member in the Foresight Community of Practice interacts with the FORwiki platform in one of the following three capacities: Administrator, Member or User. The Administrator’s, the Members’, and the Users’ interactions with the FORwiki platform are governed by the following 20 rules (or “commandments”):

  • Commandment 1: A User of the FORwiki platform is any person interested in Future Studies & Foresight, be that a Foresight practitioner, a policy-maker or just a layperson.
  • Commandment 2: A User may view any article from the FORwiki platform, including the special pages.
  • Commandment 3: A User may not modify an article on the FORwiki platform.
  • Commandment 4: A User may become a Member of the FORwiki Community after requesting a Member account on the FORwiki website, and being validated by the Administrator.
  • Commandment 5: In order to become a Member of the FORwiki Community, a User must fulfill the following two conditions: (1) to have published at least one paper in an academic journal acknowledged by the Foresight Community of Practice, and (2) to have developed the methodology of a foresight exercise and/or to have run at least one foresight exercise.
  • Commandment 6: The Administrator is expected to use common sense, as well as the vocabulary accepted by the Foresight Community of Practice when validating a User’s request.
  • Commandment 7: A Member may create new FORwiki articles, templates or info-boxes; may edit existing articles, templates or info-boxes; may state personal opinions about an article on the discussion page, including the proposal to delete the respective article.
  • Commandment 8: The FORwiki Community is constituted, and begins to function as a community, when five Members are registered on the FORwiki platform.
  • Commandment 9: Until five Members are registered, the FORwiki platform is managed by a temporary Administrator.
  • Commandment 10: The FORwiki Community designates the Administrator of the FORwiki platform by majority vote.
  • Commandment 11: The Administrator is the trustee of the FORwiki Community, and acts on its behalf at all time.
  • Commandment 12: The Administrator serves a two-years mandate in office.
  • Commandment 13: The Administrator position is occupied on voluntary basis, and without pay.
  • Commandment 14: There can be only one active Administrator of the FORwiki platform at one moment in time.
  • Commandment 15: The Administrator may create a secondary Administrator account for back-up purposes, provided that he has an agreement with the owner of the secondary Administrator account, so that there is no trespassing of Commandment 14.
  • Commandment 16: The Administrator enforces the FORwiki Policies and Guidelines (see also Commandment 19).
  • Commandment 17: The Administrator may create and edit articles (including policies and guidelines); may protect articles (including policies and guidelines) from being edited; may rollback to a previous version of an article; may delete articles; may edit Members' CSS files; may create categories and sub-categories; may create redirects and move pages; may edit the MediaWiki sidebar.
  • Commandment 18: The Administrator and all the Members are expected follow the FORwiki Policies and Guidelines.
  • Commandment 19: The FORwiki Policies and Guidelines are posted in the portal Community of the FORwiki platform.
  • Commandment 20: The FORwiki Policies and Guidelines may be modified only by the platform’s Administrator, and only if he/she takes notice of a consensus among the Members in favor of change in a particular policy or guideline.
Table: FORwiki user groups
  • Accesses personal data introduced by a self-confirmed User;
  • Confirms a User’s requests to become a Member in the Community;
  • Creates new Administrator accounts from Member accounts;
  • Edits Members' CSS and JS files;
  • Creates and edits articles, main articles and guidelines;
  • Protects articles, main article and guidelines from editing;
  • Rollback – returns to a previous version of an article;
  • Deletes articles;
  • Creates categories and sub-categories;
  • Creates redirects and moves pages;
  • Edits the MediaWiki sidebar.

registered user

  • Authenticates when logging in;
  • Sets personal preferences and style;
  • Creates a new article;
  • Uploads images;
  • Edits an existing article, references and formatting;
  • Saves new or edited articles;
  • Communicates new or edited articles;
  • Organizes new or edited articles by determining Terms of Content;
  • Views and edits watch-list;
  • Proposes the deletion of an existing page;
  • Practices editing in a controlled environment (“Sandbox”).
  • Can search or identical search articles (“go”);
  • Identifies links to an article (“what links here”);
  • Views special pages, articles and printable versions of articles, recent changes and changes in connected articles, differences between versions, one Member’s contribution;
  • Registers in order to become a Member in the Community.


  1. Plaskoff, Josh. "Intersubjectivity and Community Building: Learning to Learn Organizationally." Handbook of Organizational Learning and Knowledge Management. Easterby-Smith, Mark and Marjorie A. Lyles (eds). Blackwell Publishing, 2006. Blackwell Reference Online
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