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NASAsphere Pilot Report 2008 Public

NASAsphere Pilot Report 2008 Public

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Published by Celeste Merryman
This report discusses the findings from a social networking pilot study conducted inside NASA in 2008. The purpose of this social networking pilot was to investigate adoption and use of online social networking technology by NASA employees and contractors to cross-center and organizational boundaries and facilitate
collective intelligence.
This report discusses the findings from a social networking pilot study conducted inside NASA in 2008. The purpose of this social networking pilot was to investigate adoption and use of online social networking technology by NASA employees and contractors to cross-center and organizational boundaries and facilitate
collective intelligence.

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Published by: Celeste Merryman on Feb 23, 2009
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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10/17/2011

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NASAsphere received notoriety outside of NASA. The Chief Knowledge Officer of the United
States Strategic Command heard about NASAsphere from a blog posting on
www.opennasa.com and contacted the pilot manager to find out more about the pilot. The Chief
Knowledge Officer publishes a monthly employee newsletter focused on social networking and
wrote an article about NASAsphere in a recent publication. Here is the content of the article:

NASA's Jet Propulsion Lab developed a social networking pilot, NASASphere, which initially started
with 87 people in May 2008. Excited and energized users quickly invited their peers to join and by
July 2008, the pilot grew to 295 active users.
The pilot used Socialcast, a commercial social networking software. Users quickly connected to
their peers through personal profiles and group lists. Users also were empowered to post and
answer questions. More importantly it provided a forum for individuals to share, rate, and comment
on ideas with their peers. This helped link silos of expertise by connecting operations in multiple
locations.
One of the remarkable accomplishments was the ability of pilot users to reach outside their
immediate network of "the usual suspects" to get outside opinions and expert advice. 92% of

FINDINGS FROM THE NASASPHERE PILOT

AUGUST 2008, NASA JET PROPULSION LABORATORY

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questions that were asked through NASASphere, were answered by a user in a different branch in
the organization! For more information, contact Celeste Merryman at
celeste.merryman@jpl.nasa.gov, 408-752-9956. (Thon & Steinhauser, 2008)

The NASAsphere pilot vendor partner, Socialcast also recognized something special about
NASAsphere. Socialcast organizes several pilots for customers annually and was impressed by
the content and activity exhibited by the NASAsphere participants. NASA was invited to partner
with Socialcast in a conference presentation at the 2008 KM World conference, in the
“Innovation Solutions & KM Practices” session to discuss the pilot experiences and findings.

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