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Open Strategist
Illustration of a bicycle leaning against a tree
Image CC BY-ND Bryan Mathers of WAO

Julie’s Bicycle is a uniquely-named climate not-for-profit mobilising the arts and culture to take action on the climate and ecological crisis.

In October 2006, Alison (not Julie) got on her bike to meet some friends from the music industry for dinner at a restaurant called Julie’s. That night together they…

Image: Clay LeConey

“Now this is not the end. It is not even the beginning of the end. But it is, perhaps, the end of the beginning.” (Winston Churchill)

A couple of months ago, we announced that we’d been asked to help eight charities with some digital support through Catalyst’s ‘Continuation ‘programme. …

Image by dylan nolte

Imagine a community garden with abundant fruit and vegetables for anyone to come and pick and consume. Now imagine a factory creating standardised parts to be used by manufacturers. The two metaphors feel quite different, don’t they?

The first, the garden metaphor, feels welcoming. You can envisage suggestions being made…

TL;DR: add your comments to this GitHub comments thread to express your opposition to the Open Badges standard being merged with with ‘Comprehensive Learner Record’ (CLR). An overview of the better path forward can be found in this overview slide deck.

In March 2019, two years after Mozilla handed the…

As anyone familiar with the work of WAO’s members will be aware, we’re big fans of Open Badges. We’ve been involved with the movement from the beginning and, in this post, want to reflect on our experience of how they can be used for the digital transformation of organisations.

Image CC BY-ND Bryan Mathers


WAO is in the midst of our latest Catalyst-funded project, having spent the majority of the pandemic supporting charities through digital transformation.

Catalyst itself is undergoing a transformation, as explained by Ellie in this blog post. In a nutshell, Catalyst responded well during the emergency situation caused by the pandemic…

We Are Open is once again collaborating with Participate, which is always a good time for our members. The folks at Participate are awesome, and have previously sponsored our work on Badge Wiki among other community endeavours.

Images via

This time around, we began our conversation from a starting point of our…

The Tao of WAO logo

The Tao of WAO is a podcast about the intersection of technology, society, and internet culture — with a dash of philosophy and art for good measure. Hosted by Laura Hilliger and Doug Belshaw of We Are Open Co-op.

Subscribe* via SoundCloud or RSS

* Also available at Apple Podcasts, Deezer, Pocket Casts, Spotify, Stitcher, and TuneIn

The first three episodes are available now, and we’re aiming to publish on a regular schedule once Laura is back from holiday!

Questions? Comments? Add them below or on SoundCloud, tweet us, or drop us an email!

Image CC BY-ND Bryan Mathers of We Are Open Co-op

Project details

Image CC BY-ND Bryan Mathers

What a rollercoaster ride the last five years have been for the founding members of We Are Open Co-op! From an idea floated in a Slack channel, we’ve grown to a sustainable business working with organisations ranging from the very small to household names.

We’re a collective of independent thinkers…

Doug Belshaw

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