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What is COL's interest in Governance?

Three-year Plan, 2006-2009COL's Strategic Plan - ODL for development
The Commonwealth of Learning helps governments and institutions to expand the scope, scale and quality of learning about governance by using technology mediated approaches. COL promotes models and systems for sustainable activities by working with international partners to build models, create materials, enhance organisational capacity and nurture networks & communities that facilitate learning in support of development goals.

  • Strengthening institutions
  • building organisational and individual capacity
  • Integrating gender considerations in decision-making
  • Building tools and models
  • developing materials

What are COL's Governance Themes?

COL is focused on empowering people through facilitating their engagement in democratic processes through partnering with other on innovative activities with the following themes in mind:

  • Women and disadvantaged populations
  • Local Level Governance
  • Developing Leadership

Why is COL focused on Governance?

Good Governance, leadership and empowerment are essential building blocks of civil society. NGO’s play a critical part in strengthening links between 'the grassroots and public institutions' – and engaging their communities through education, outreach, advocacy and communications.

What is the role of COL's Education Specialist, Governance?

The newly established Governance sector is assisting Commonwealth member countries in developing and adapting open and distance learning materials and training approaches to strengthen democracy and good governance through the NGOs, the educational system and learning institutions.

Who is Dr. Tanyss Munro?

As COL's Education Specialist, Governance, Dr. Munro has worked to increase access and improve quality of education in remote, troubled First Nations communities in northern and western Canada and with extremely poor communities in South Asia, most recently in Bangladesh. Please see her COL Bio.

What is Governance?

There are many definitions, but essentially it is about: how decisions are made - for and by whom - and implemented. .

Who are the Stakeholders?

Governance involves all levels of government (including local level governance), citizens including women, men, youth, the media, education institutions, NGOs and the public and private sector.

What is WikiGovernance?

WikiGovernance is a unique collaborative workspace for governance leaders, educational specialists, instructional designers and policy makers to create, develop and adapt free and open educational resources and materials (for online and face-to-face applications) for use in, and by their communities. As a project node on WikiEducator, WikiGovernance also constitutes an active governance cluster within a growing and sustainable e-learning community throughout the Commonwealth

What is the COLLaGE Community?

COLLaGE stands for Commonwealth of Learning - Leadership and Governance, Empowerment .

The Commonwealth of Learning’s – Leadership, Governance and Empowerment (COLLaGE) community is an online community forum to discuss common issues and share insights, ideas resources and approaches related to governance.

Using a facilitated format, it will feature presentations and invite commentary and further dialogue from the participants. Excerpts will be available online and in print. Topics include: successful community mobilisation; increasing women’s participation in local level governance; developing governance literacy skills; dialogue about effective ODL resources and methods; and using WikiEducator to build the WikiGovernance content.


  • All decisions intricately tied to cultural development, expression and experience
  • Use of culturally-appropriate images, colours, practices, codes of conduct


for NGOs

  • Strengthens NGOs
  • Builds organizational depth, and capacity
  • Builds on history, experience, values
  • Case Studies
    • important reference points, value - "We have something to teach / show others"
    • different models of conflict resolution, valuing diversity

for Communities

  • strengthens communities
  • enables cost-effective access to resources, economies of scale
  • builds 'clusters of interest'
  • develops support network for community mobilisation

for Individuals

  • Development of new skills and knowledge
  • Development of contacts, relationships

Partners to date


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