About WDF
Partners Program
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Web Development Fund

Partners Program (currently inactive)

Web Lab has received funding for the last two rounds of the WDF from PBS and the Ford Foundation. Through the new WDF Partnership program, Web Lab seeks to create opportunities for technology innovators, major web sites, foundations, and both for-profit and non-profit organizations to work with us directly in the WDF process.

In addition to the open call for proposals, Web Lab will create sponsored tracks, each with a different focus and agenda. Web developers creating proposals will be able to select from an assortment of these tracks upon which to focus their creative energies.

One track might request proposals that, say, explore how the Web can more effectively educate children about the legal system, while another track might offer an innovative tool for creating on-line dialogues and ask for new ways to implement it. Each track will be sponsored by and developed in conjunction with a different partner, tailored to each partner's unique needs, goal or mission.

Web Lab will offer the following services for WDF partners:

The first thing a WDF partner receives is an intensive consultation to help the partner identify how best to use the skills and resources Web Lab offers.

Request for Proposals
In conjunction with a WDF partner, Web Lab writes a request for proposals for this partner's track, creates an on-line database to accept proposal submissions, announces the track as part of the next round of the WDF, adds the track to the WDF Web site, and publicizes the track throughout the WDF promotion period. Proposals are then accepted and managed through a proprietary on-line database system.

Every WDF submission goes through an extensive evaluation process in which it is critiqued by Web Lab's staff and a broad group of specially selected and trained reviewers over a period of months.

How the process continues at this point depends on the needs of each individual partner. In the past, a "short list" of the strongest contenders has gone to the WDF Editorial Committee, a special group of Web industry leaders and experienced practitioners who meet to discuss each project in detail and make recommendations to Web Lab.

Web Lab then interviewed the project teams behind the most viable proposals and worked with them to strengthen their vision for the site and to cover all necessary contingencies. After these conversations, the project teams re-wrote their proposals, which were then sent to PBS Online for their comments, questions, etc. (Under our contract with PBS, PBS must "sign off" on any projects that Web Lab proposes PBS host.)

Site Development
As an editor works with a book author, Web Lab works closely with the project team, assisting them with such things as scheduling, handling their relationship with the staff at PBS Online, and keeping the project within the appropriate conceptual and budgetary scope.

The site is jointly promoted by Web Lab and PBS Online targeting both journalists and a broad reach of high-visibility press venues.

On-going Production
Once the site is launched, Web Lab continues to work with the site producers to ensure that the site evolves over time and is enriched and informed by visitors and contributors to the site.

A la Carte
We can discuss providing a more customized approach with interested sponsoring organizations.

Want to Learn More?

If you would like us to let you know when we reactivate the Web Development Fund Partners Program, please send an email to partners@weblab.org.

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