In November 2020 we facilitated a Virtual Book Sprint with the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ), which is the main German development agency. The Book Sprint hosted a number of experts from the arenas of Transitional Development Assistance, Construction and Peacebuilding, to exchange about GIZ’s development work in crisis contexts.
The physical side of peace
The handbook “Concrete Solutions” outlines GIZ’s experience in combining peacebuilding and construction, specially in Nigeria, Afghanistan, Iraq, and Ukraine. The book is significant for GIZ, serving as a means to showcase their expertise to clients such as the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development. It is used as an argumentation basis for funding projects, and whenever inquiries around the topic come, the link to the book is sent.
The book provides a unique and well-structured summary of the collected knowledge, making it an excellent reference for practitioners. To make it more accessible, the team of authors created cards with a QR code linked to the book that were distributed at various events and conferences.
A virtual kind of collaboration
The collaborative writing process during the Book Sprint also created a strong team spirit. Around 25 people had contributed content in some way, rendering it a real feat of collaboration. As one team member noted,
It was very valuable for us to have a finished product within a defined time frame that everyone in the team supported. Typically, this can be a challenge for us given our internal processes.
Overall, everyone who encountered the book was very pleased with it, recognizing it as a high-quality product. The book has proven to be an essential asset for GIZ in demonstrating their expertise in the field and contributing to their common objective of promoting peacebuilding.