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The PROWE project (Personal Repositories Online: WIKI Environment) will provide an innovative informal environment to support collaboration and learning amongst part-time, remote tutors on distance education programmes, and will build on and be evaluated alongside the asset repositories and digital library collections which are already available. PROWE will address some of the practical issues of building an information sharing culture, by examining the informal and formal exchange mechanisms between remote workers in an institutional context. Informal repositories such as BLIKIs, WIKIs and weblogs offer the lighter touch approach (no moderation, for example) and therefore, less staff resource intensive options to engage part-time remote tutors in interacting with other forms of repositories whilst they are analysing, synthesizing and producing new forms of knowledge. Although the contexts used for this investigation are the strategic organisational contexts of two large distance education providers, The Open University (OU) and University of Leicester (UoL), there will be transferable lessons to other employers of part-time and distributed teaching staff. PROWE will offer tools both for storing and managing resources, such as case studies, personal library resources, and making them available through informal conversational networks. The deliverables will be a demonstrator, proof of concept, and toolkit for sharing good practice and guidelines on integration of informal networks with more formal enterprise repository systems, case studies and an evaluation report which addresses the wider applicability of informal and personal repositories for remote and part-time tutors. Project start date: 2005-06-01. Project end date: 2007-05-31. (Excerpt from <a href="http://www.prowe.ac.uk/">this source</a>)

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