International networking: Connecting midwives through social media

Publication Type:
Journal Article
International Nursing Review, 2012, 59 (3), pp. 431 - 434
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Purpose: This article reports on the 'Virtual International Day of the Midwife E-vent', an innovative initiative that uses social media to provide opportunities for learning and networking internationally. Background: This e-vent was conceived of and initiated in 2009 by a small group of midwives with an interest in social media. The e-vent uses web conferencing software and schedules a presentation every hour for a 24-h period so as to reach midwives or other interested parties in all time zones of the globe. Methods: The authors draw on their experiences to describe the e-vent including the e-vent aims and organizing processes, and to report on participation trends over the 3-year period. Findings: The e-vent has seen significant growth over a 3-year period with participation increasing from an average of five participants per session to 50. The organizing committee has expanded to include an international team and they have extended the reach of the project by establishing a Facebook page. Conclusions: While the use of social media has its limitations, projects such as the International Day of the Midwife E-vent have real potential to increase access to educational materials and provide opportunities for international networking. © 2012 The Authors. International Nursing Review © 2012 International Council of Nurses.
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