2020 has been the year of virtual meetings and workshops. Many have embraced this new form of working, but experiences have been mixed: we are collectively recognising that virtual engagement is hard work for hosts, presenters and audiences alike.

In this document, we show how to approach online engagements in a smarter way. It draws upon the CRC for Water Sensitive Cities (CRCWSC) experience and research into collaborative processes and tools. It is not a guide on technology platforms. It is a summary of the things we’ve learnt about good engagement processes pre-COVID, and how these principles translate to virtual engagement.

This document is a collective resource to grow as the CRCWSC community builds its experience in delivering online training, webinars, workshops and other virtual engagements.

We invite further ideas, lessons, tips and links to resources so that we can learn together as we develop online versions of the water sector’s collaborative and learning activities.

Feel free to contribute in any way – small tips, additional tools, new sections, new formats. It is our shared resource that will continue to grow.

1. Make virtual workshops (etc.) more engaging for participants
2. Make virtual workshops less stressful for host and facilitators
3. Make virtual methods a legitimate and effective tool for stakeholder engagement.

Last updated: 10th Nov 2020