Do you want to join our Covid19 Community Response? A breakdown of Edgeryders activities, roles, tasks and workflows

Over the next few weeks , and for as long as this crisis continues to affect us all, we are coordinating a a number of activities which we feel can help everyone, including ourselves, to better cope. This is a call for everyone to let the coordinating team know what you might be interested in doing with others in the community. Then the crew can reach out and find a nice way you can contribute based on your interests, what you enjoy doing and your constraints.

Three parallel activities

We put together a rough breakdown of what we think is needed to make each thing happen in to specifc tasks that people can take on. It is based on our previous experiences. Don’t worry if you do not find an exact match, there is always something you can contribute and maybe you even know of ways to do it differently!

Activity 1: Organise Weekly online community video gatherings, or " Campfire Chats" related to the themes that we are focusing on.**

  • identify compelling offer for participants to talk with one another via us calls (what happens during and after call - what we can offer people (documentation/summary of what was discussed + identify needs & offers for support, analysis of what they all say together about what to do to mitigate future crisis
  • define each topic & why it is important to discuss it now: what issues do we see now and what is in the future:
  • pick/define key questions around each topic that resonate with how people are feeling/concerned with/ thinking or talking about
  • set one event per weekly call
  • do a call for participation (text + flyers); - publish description of this community activity, engaging materials for people to join the calls
  • make a nice format for publishing post- call summaries that draw people into the platform documenting discussions

Activity 2: Crowdbuilding solutions (OCI lab Method)

  • publish a call for problem owners & Project leaders who need something done/help, and agree to be present in the thread (calls should be for projects that are related to the themes ).
  • also publish a call for Mentors with different skillsets (bss dev, tech etc),
  • Project Leaders and Project Mentors share story and answer questions in a thread so people get to know/understand what they are doing & why, plus connect with who they are e.g Anthony/OpenInsulin, Woodbine, Greece with Refugees, Thomas Mboa (others @noemi ?)
  • Create short descriptions of their initiative & what support they need,
  • structure them into tasks/calls for specific kinds of help or kinds of skills needed,
  • publish a call for Project Contributors to choose between which projects they want
  • Project Contributors publish their story so people get to know/understand who they are, know about their background and professional interests/profile/skillset, plus connect with who they are
  • make a selection of projects that we can support based on interest demonstrated by project contributors (which projects get PLs who want to work on them)
  • Matchmake small teams of PLs with PCs and Mentors,
  • The teams develop clearly defined goals and tasks that they can do together in 1 week with daily social work sprints (via Video chats + Riot + daily status updates and calls for help here on the platform)

Activity 3: Source Stories for seeding conversations (directly) on the following topics that can act as mind/conversation openers:

  • Health care (opencare topics matched to Corona)
  • Work/ Labour
  • Acts of Kindness and Solidarity
  • Mental Health
  • Migration

Want to get involved? Answer these three questions in a comment below!

1. Which theme are you most interested in at the moment?

  • Learning from the Past, Taking Notes for the Future: What are we learning from this crisis that informs how we’re thinking about responding to other crises, like global climate change?

  • Work/Labour: How has our work been affected and how have our day to day lives changed? What tools or practices have we used to cope?

  • Acts of Kindness and Solidarity: What do we need to do to help each other get through?

  • Mental Health and Surviving Boredom: What are we doing to cope with our social day-to-day lives …boredom …anxiety?

  • Digital Communication: What has changed under social distancing? What tools have we used to stay in touch, and how has it felt to use them — how have our relationships changed or been mediated differently?

  • Technology before and after What technologies are were talking about now vs a month ago? What do we now relate to topics like " innovation" or new technologies like artificial intelligence? What hopes or doubts do we have about their potential? What fears do we have?

2. Which of these activities are you most interested in contributing to:

  • Organising one or more community video chat
  • Crowdbuilding Solutions: E.g Building a MOOC on distributed/remote collaboration
  • Source Stories for meaningful conversations

3. Which/if any of the roles below would you like to take on or contribute to? Maybe you can think of something we have missed? Great! tell us!

  • Collaboration DJ: We need a small team of coordinators who work together to build a ganntt based on the above and then check in with the different people involved to ensure they know what they are to do when, flag any potential delays etc
  • Question Asker: Defines the topic/subject of the call for projects// helps Project Leaders, Mentors and Contributors to develop their stories //asks people to elaborate more and based on this// produce concise descriptions of topic they are addressing, project & why it’s important incl context and a bit about the person// as well as to better elaborate/define what they want to achieve and why/what it says about their view of future of internet/digital)
  • Synthesist: Read threads and write concise descriptions for each project, bios/short intros for each PLS, Mentors, PCs/ As well as specification of what they are looking for / task description/ Skeleton call for contributors
  • Storycrafter: You work with others to produce engaging description of what we are doing + call for PLS, Mentors and PLs/ Produce succint descriptions of tasks to make clear to general public (and make it easier for people to find “their people” and know around what to engage with them), Craft engaging feature articles + text for flyers featuring each person/ Produce status updates to draw conversions on social media/ Write email for engaging Problem Owners (potential adopters or financers of solutions)
  • Community Engager : Do research in platform archive for “best of stories and or comments” around the set themes// Reach out and re-engage the people who posted best stories and or comments with question of how they are and how/if things are different now
  • Mentor : You have domain expertise you can contribute to help guide people working on projects
  • Matchmaker: Talk to the Project Leader, Project Contributors and Mentors - propose teams based on what complimentary skills that are needed and offered to complete tasks for the projects.
  • Future Forwarder : Produce MOU/Social contract on how each org will pay it forward/work to make the effort of everyone worthwhile/generate opportunities to support the professional development of each participant. E.G Feature them/ the process/ lessons learned and lobby for EC and other institutions to invest in the cloud of insights+ solutions attached to it .

Great initiative. I volunteer for activities 1 and (from next week) 3.


  1. These are all super interesting! Maybe for me it’s “learning from the past” and “acts of kindness”.
  2. For now, source stories.
  3. For now, story crafter.

Two suggestions:

  1. Question 1 could become a poll, maybe?
  2. Would it make sense to shorten this post to the first part only, leaving the questions for a separate post?


In the following week I’m going to take on:

  1. Topics around Work/Labour and Migration

  2. Source stories: publish open call and check who in the Wellbeing and larger ER community would be willing to share their experience

  3. Synthesist, Storycrafter and Community engager (there are of course overlaps)

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I volunteer for Activity 2, with the caveat that I am most focused locally because I think that I will make the most difference at the moment in my specific context. What we are seeing here is that the highly educated population that speak English and are plugged into the European context are responding responsibly, while the lower-income and education bracket that do not read media in English is not.

I’m directly involved in one particular project. In my community, people have started to look to me for recent information, since I have spent a lot of time reading journals and keeping up with the government response and the recommendations of authorities in Sweden and internationally.

A group of people, the leader of whom used to work for Furhat Robotics before he started Narratory, are developing a chatbot that we help might alleviate some of the pressure on the national hotline phone numbers, which people are calling to get information in speech that is already available online. It’s already up and running, and the technology works well enough that I have decided to lend a hand. Potentially, the gains could be very significant. In an extreme crisis, we could even work with authorities and allow the robot to call people with information and allow them to ask followup questions.

What I am doing for this group is to help them curate the content that the bot knows about. It is already online and open for calls, although it is still pretty stupid as the content is being updated as we speak.

So far I have helped them define a content strategy (in Swedish).
COVID19-Chatbot-Sweden - Hur tar vi ställning till innehåll.pdf (272.3 KB)

If we think that this fits in with the OCI lab Method, I would be very willing to work on this in that context and perhaps bring that initiative on to Edgeryders in some shape or form. It is currently very local to Sweden, but could easily be extended to other countries with local teams. Ping @nadia


Dear Edgeryders!

Happy to read this proposal since I’m very grateful for Hugi’s support so far in the project. I will start by elaborate a bit more on what the initiative is about and where we are and finally get back how beneficial Hugi would be for our success.

The vision: Our vision is to ultimately save lives during the ongoing Corona crisis by easing the load of the healthcare and crisis management systems. Initially, this is mainly the official hotlines for healthcare (1177) and crisis information (11313). To symbolize the need - the latter number alone has gone from 25 daily calls to over 35000 the last week.

The solution: Our solution is a chatbot that can answer questions and provide support by telephone and text-chat in various channels (websites, FB messenger, mobile apps). We are focusing on the most common and general questions sourced from official sources. We have contacts with Folkhälsomyndigheten, the Swedish health ministry who is the thought-leader in the national crisis management. They love our initiative and are interested in supporting us - we are now trying to work out how.

Technology: Technically, the bot uses state-of-the-art AI tools together with automatically fetched content from official sources, curated by a team of volunteer content editors. Since the need for accurate content is crucial, it is manually reviewed and curated through a content editing tool that allows the volunteer editors to work efficiently and teach the AI to become better over time and adjust itself whenever new information gets out.

Team: The team consists of several experts in building conversational apps - myself included - and strong developers, designers and marketeers. We are backed one of the leading remote customer-service companies who supports us with content maintenance over time. What we are lacking right now is someone to spearhead our work with content. This was the exact reason why I reached out to Hugi in the first place - believing him to have the perfect skills, experiences and interests for the job. The work he has done so far (creating the content strategy and going through/reviewing the initial battery of content we have curated automatically and manually) have both been incredibly valuable but also served a great inspiration for the fully volunteer team.

Happy to answer any questions and would be very happy if we could get a continued support from Edgeryders.


Ping @Richard @jasen_lakic and @Jirka_Kocian: do you see a topic which you might want to help with?
I’m happy to set up a call for contributions and a community call for next week to freely explore more with some people in the Wellbeing community.
One of interest could be around the Work and Labour - we could start with a mini survey asking where people get their safety nets these days? Things like savings or all the way going into forced/technical unemployment or however different governments call it…
And then if they are freelancing we could generate and collect maybe a set of creative solutions for coping.


Hi, great initiative!

My answers to the questions and what I could do in the upcoming days/weeks:

From nr. 1: I’m most interested in:
Work/labour (especially freelancers in cultural sector across Europe)
Acts of Kindness and Solidarity
Mental Health
Digital communication

From nr. 3: I can help/work on:
being the synthesist and community engager


hi @luddilo and welcome :slight_smile:

Am I understanding correctly that what you mean by the content work you need help with is identifying/articulating FAQs to Swedish institutions…then matching the right answers to them based information available on official sources?

Hi @sirine_bouslama @imake @amiraGbs @Meds.jedidi1 @Wajdibr - perhaps this is something you might want to check out?

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I am good with topic 1…or 2 or any of them really. Just to be clear, our goal here is to get conversation going that is worthwhile for our ethnographic work and fulfillment of the H2020 contracts. But the call for fulfilling these roles, this is an internal call. Unless someone from outside wants to volunteer from outside I suppose. I’m just trying to get my head around all the structure being posted here…

Another thought that came to me earlier is, can we send a message to every user of the platform? Many have the platform messages forwarded to their own email, so they don’t have to log in to ER to see it. I think if we asked our ER friends and colleagues to go one of those topics to say what is going on from their perspective, a lot of them would do it. Although it is a big group mailing, I don’t see it as spam. More like we are asking our friends to do us a favor. So many people have come and gone via the LOTE events and Open Village, etc. who don’t really spend time on the site much now, but are surely doing things of interest. Maybe we could bring them back for a bit…?


Hello @luddilo, welcome! This looks like good work, and @hugi has made an intriguing case for why it is needed. I personally cannot think of any meaningful way to help you, but would be interested in knowing how it works out.

A word on the case made by Hugi and mentioned above:

This looks a bit like correlation-not-causation. High education helps people navigate situations in more way than access to English media. For example, as @MariaEuler and others pointed out, some people struggle to navigate statistical statements, and as a result they are uncertain as to how serious the situation is, and what they should do. I know one woman who oscillates between “I’m just going to ignore this nonsense” and “ZOMBIE APOCALYPSE!”. In Bayesian terms, she updates too hard: whatever she hears last is the ONLY truth, to be extrapolated to the ONLY state of the world.

That said, a chatbot in Swedish must be a good thing to have. @piersoft made this interactive map, which went viral and is now being used by many, many Italian media outlets. People clearly need communication.

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As an example of how that could look, have a look at the #WirVsVirus hackathon for pandemic relief, organized by various German digital society organizations in collaboration with the Chancellor’s Office of German government. It’s happening this Friday. Their website also has a list of results from similar hackathons that have been held in Estonia and Poland over the last days. I wrote some more about it here:


@hugi @luddilo kolla :point_up_2:

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Do you think this thing might be useful for structuring that line of acitvities? @matthias @hugi

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Yes, I definitely want this!

I think you might know the dev, no? Also interesting project the food thing

And @kristofer who posted about it on Discourse is on Edgeryders. I’m guessing @zaunders may be involved too.

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tiny worlds :slight_smile:

ping @amiraGbs you should follow this thread as it has implications for how we structure OCI Lab calls for participation, tasks, and the process in general moving forward.

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Looks quite interesting for sure. How would you divide up the topics in a scheme like that?

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