Looking back & looking forward: 2008 & 2009

[Summary: A quick look back at 2008, and a look forward to plans for 2009]

2008 has been a busy year indeed. It’s been my first full year working completely freelance and I’ve worked on some great projects from running an online course for Oxfam activists, through the stacks of work around Youth Work, Youth Engagement and Social Networking and developing the SMS and website platform for a national climate change campaign.

I’ve also found myself video reporting at the 2008 E-Campaigning Forum (the content is available as part of recently launched and really handy Fairsay Insights e-campaigning toolkit), organising the UK Youth Online unconference in September, fasciliting the development of the resulting Youth Work Online network of practioners, and writing a module on youth participation for the Open University Foundation Course in Youth Work, I started out 2008 living in Leicester, but in June made the move back down to Oxford – and have been getting involved once more in Fairtrade campaigning, resulting a few weeks ago in the @askforfairtrade campaign.

I’ve been really fortunate that all these projects, and the many other bits of consultancy, research and writing not mentioned above, have all offered great opportunities for reflective learning, and I’m looking forward to a lot more in 2009. From Action Learning around Social Network Sites and Youth Engagement, to exploring youth led innovation, and innovation in the provision of information for young people I’m set for a packed, but I hope, really interesting and collaborative, 2009. However, most exciting of all for me, I’ve just got confirmation that from October next year I’ll be getting to devote even more time to in depth exploration of the impact of social media on social processes and social change, when I start on a year-long MSc in the Social Science of the Internet at the Oxford Internet Institute.

Thanks to everyone who has been reading and sharing comment and insights here on Tim’s Blog or over on Twitter in 2008. Wishing you all the best for 2009!

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