Five aspects of effective networks

I’ve been doing a few presentations lately that include the basics of network-centric organizing, so I thought it would be helpful to post a refresher here. With props, as always, to Marty Kearns from whom I learned a lot of this.

Update 6/25/10: Here’s the latest version of my presentation on network-centric thinking:

Update 5/22/08: Now you can watch the presentation, which makes very little sense without me talking.

Five aspects of effective networks

  1. Strong social ties
    • Personal relationships
    • Trust
    • Awareness
  2. Dense communication grid
    • Online & offline
    • One-to-one, one-to-many, and many-to-many
    • For example
      • Blogs, forums
      • E-mail, IM, SMS
      • Face-to-face
  3. Common story
    • Shared values
    • Collective narrative
  4. Culture of sharing
    • For example
      • Data, information
      • Skills & expertise
      • Money
      • Space
  5. Network awareness
    • Feeling like a member
    • Knowing what the network is for

Here are some more resources to learn more about network-centric organizing strategies:

  • Earlier presentations on this topic: (slides) & (video) & (with helpful links)
  • Blogging tips:
  • Network-centric approach to politics:
  • Background reading:
  • Marty Kearns’ widsom: &

… and more in my “Advocacy 2.0″ category on this blog:

Ruby Sinreich is a progressive activist, local politico, online organizer, capacity builder, and social networker.

Posted in Advocacy 2.0, nptech, NTC, politics, rants
2 comments on “Five aspects of effective networks
  1. Beth Kanter says:


    Why don’t you do a slideshare cast of it? WOuld love to hear you present it.

  2. I’m giving a much shorter version of this talk at Here’s the required 20 slides:

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