The CCAMLR e-groups facility has been established to foster improved collaboration amongst intersessional working groups. CCAMLR e-groups is built using open source tools and is hosted by the CCAMLR Secretariat. The basic structure of each e-group provides:
- Topics - a forum for discussion between Members of the group on various Topics
- Notebooks - collaboration on documents and other information to be shared in a Notebook
An e-group is a collection of users all having the ability to access and contribute to Topics and Notebooks as a means of collaborating intersessionally. Members of an e-group may be notified whenever content is added or changed. Most e-groups are 'closed' in that access is by invitation only. However, e-groups can be set as 'open' by the owner such that anyone with a CCAMLR login can join.
A Topic is a dynamic discussion amongst Members of the e-group on a particular subject or topic. The thread is made up of a series of comments in chronological order that are attributed to the Member of the e-group that posted them. When a new Comment is posted, an email notification can be sent to alert either all, or some, of the e-group that there is a new contribution to the discussion.
Each Notebook is made up of Book Pages and is a way of creating a more permanent information resource for each e-group. The way in which the Notebooks are used will probably differ between e-groups. For example, a Notebook could contain documents that Members of the e-group consider to be relevant to the work of the e-group. This might include attaching information papers, code or data files to a page and providing a description on the each page itself.
Another option might be to have a Notebook that forms the basis of the report of the e-group, perhaps by having a page for each section and inviting Members of the e-group to contribute text to various pages. As with the Topic discussion threads, an email notification can be sent to alert either all, or some, of the e-group to let them know when a new contribution has been placed in the Notebook.