Bonnie Zink

Helping you tell your story!

Bonnie Zink - Helping you tell your story!

To Wear or Not to Wear: research and wearable technology


Please note the change in date!

When: Thursday October 29, 2015 at noon EDT

Where: Twitter (follow @KMbChat and the #KMbChat hashtag at the above scheduled date and time)

Topic: To Wear or Not to Wear: research and wearable technology featuring Ali Abbas Mehboob Hirji  (@abbaspeaks) as moderator

What is this chat all about?

Wearable technology is a modern trend that helps people capture, manage, and access their data while on the go. It is a trend that is expected to grow. Wearable technology is appearing everywhere. Runners monitor their distance, heart rate, and other biostats with Fitbits of all shapes and sizes. Virtual reality, like Oculus, promise to allow us to experience anything,  anywhere. We text, call, and email with our smart watches. We have even accessed our data and knowledge through Google Glass eye wear.

As our devices evolve, we are afforded new opportunities to engage with and share our knowledge. This month’s #KMbChat features wearable technology. Join Ali Abbas Mehboob Hirji (@abbaspeaks), Research Coordinator with ORION – Ontario Research and Innovation Optical Network. Join us to explore just how wearable technology is changing the landscape of knowledge mobilization. Let’s talk about:

  • Wearable technology gadgets and how they may be changing the data collection process?
  • Whether these gadgets change how we access data and knowledge or not?
  • Concerns and challenges with using wearable technology in a research setting?

What do you want to talk about?

Do you have any specific you’d like to address during #KMbChat? Send us your questions and we’ll do our best to answer them during the chat.

AIHS and KMb


When: Thursday September 24, 2015 at noon MT

Where: Twitter (follow @KMbChat and the #KMbChat hashtag at the above scheduled date and time)

Topic: Alberta Innovates – Health Solutions (AIHS) on Research Impact: evaluation and knowledge mobilization

Please note the time change.

KMbChat will begin promptly at 12:00 (MT) – that is noon in Alberta or 14:00h EDT!

What is this chat about?

In June 2015, AIHS hosted a unique intensive training course on implementing health research impact assessments (#AHRIA15). The hands-on, practical curriculum focused on the health research and innovation system in Alberta and Canada. This collaborative event included many of our provincial partners and the course is affiliated with the International School on Research Impact Assessment (ISRIA).

Participants in our course included knowledge mobilization (KMb) and knowledge translation (KT) specialists. This sparked an interesting side discussion on the nature of KMb and research evaluation and how they relate to one another. This KMbChat focuses on this conversation and how we all work to understand research impact.

Who is Dorothy Pinto?

Dorothy is a Health Research Evaluator and who recently joined the Performance Management and Evaluation team at Alberta Innovates – Health Solutions (AIHS). She is the team lead for the following health research investments: Training and Career Development and the Tomorrow Project. She works with the team on additional AIHS portfolios and programs. Dorothy is a PhD candidate in Measurement and Evaluation at the University of Alberta. Her research interests include how evaluation supports learning at the organizational level. Dorothy is also a board member of the AB & NWT chapter of the Canadian Evaluation Society.

Connect with Dorothy Pinto

Connect with Dorothy to continue this conversation:

What is AIHS?

Alberta Innovates – Health Solutions (AIHS) funds and supports health research and innovation activity across the province. Working with our many partners in the health system, we ensure that research achieves innovation in care, policy and practice, and that the needs of patients and clinicians influence research. Our vision is to transform the health and well being of Albertans through research and innovation.
The Performance Management and Evaluation unit at AIHS provides the expertise to assess the value and impact of our investments so that we can continue to improve as an organization and to positively affect health system innovation in this province and beyond. Planning, measuring, assessing and communicating the results of health research impacts are strengths that AIHS offers the provincial and global research and innovation environment.

My Favourite Hoots…

Most of you know that my go-to social media management software is Hootsuite. It allows me to do what I do efficiently and easily. Managing several profile across just as many social platforms would be impossible without logging into Hootsuite.

I am a certified Hootsuite pro usera Hootsuite Ambassador, and a member of Hootsuite’s solution partnership program. I pay a few dollars a month to increase the functionality of my dashboard. I learn from other Hootsuite Ambassadors across the globe. I promote the software and receive recognition and a few dollars for each new sign-up. Hootsuite is central to my social media management strategy.

I’ve been managing my digital footprint for a long time now. I have tested and tried many software packages over the years and none came close to meeting my needs. Hootsuite did it! The Hoots (features) that top my Hootlist of must have are:

Hoot #1: Support

HootThe digital age is filled with steep learning curves. Although many software companies promise to deliver easy work flows and add efficiency to your day, few deliver. Hootsuite, from day one, delivers the support I need. When I was a free user, their @Hootsuite_Help Twitter profile was always ready with a solution to any problem I experienced. Once I became a pro user, the @Hootsuite_Pro Twitter handles was integral to my learning what I needed to learn in order to make the software do what I needed it to do.

Hoot #2: Hootsuite University

Hootsuite Certified ProfessionalHootsuite doesn’t just give you the tool, they give you the knowledge to use that tool effectively. Hootsuite University teaches you what you need to know about the tool and using social media like a pro. Their video-based learning system is easily accessed and understood by those beginning their social media journey as well as more experienced users, like social media managers.

Video course material and webinars include:

  • Social media training for business
  • Lecture series that allows you direct access to expert social media knowledge and experience of industry thought leaders
  • Videos that help you learn how to search for jobs on LinkedIn, post regular updates to Facebook and Twitter, manage your videos on YouTube, and a whole lot of other learning about the platforms that you use

Give them a test run and sign up for your access to Hootsuite University today.

Hoot #3: Social Listening

The most important piece of any successful social media strategy is social listening. Before you join the conversations that matter to you, you must first figure out what those conversations are and where they are happening. Staying on top of the key words and hashtags important to you and your industry is what social listening is all about. Hootsuite streams make listening to the conversations that matter to you easy.

Set up streams to help you:

  • Track what your competitors are talking about
  • Find out what your clients are talking about
  • Keep up with industry trends and topics by tracking hashtags
  • Engage with your local community
  • Discover who links to your website and the context of that conversation

BONUS: Once you have your streams set up, you can archive those conversations in an easily downloadable .csv file. This allows you to manipulate the data in your favourite spreadsheet program.

There you have it. These are my top three Hoots that keep me using and promoting Hootsuite.


Do you want to know more? Email me and we can continue the conversation.

Already a Hootsuite user, but ready to take your skills to the next level? Sign up for Hootsuite Pro and contact me so we can talk about how to make Hootsuite Pro work for you.

Digital KMb! Open access! #KMbChat


When: Thursday August 27, 2015 at noon EDT

Where: Twitter (follow @KMbChat and the #KMbChat hashtag at the above scheduled date and time)

Topic: Digital KMb! Open access!

What is this chat all about?

This week’s chat is all about accessing a digital knowledge mobilizer’s (KMber) experience.

  • Do you ever wonder how a digital KMber manages many profiles across several platforms while continuing to carry out other daily work and meeting deadlines?
  • Is the digital world a mystery to you?

Check in to #KMbChat on Thursday August 27, 2015 at noon EDT to answer these and other questions. Let’s peek behind the magic curtain together and figure out how to make the  digital world work for us.

Format Change

Let’s try something a bit different. The conversation will be run by YOU! That’s right, you are in the driver’s seat this month. Come ready to share your knowledge and ask the questions that will deliver the answers you need.

A few tips for a great participation experience:

  • Be sure to include #KMbChat in ALL your tweets while participating in the chat on Thursday August 27, 2015 from noon to 13:00h (EDT)
  • Ensure that your questions and comments are less than 140 characters
  • Tag @bonniezink and/or @KMbChat in your tweets so that I will be alerted to your questions or comments immediately
  • Ask me anything! If I know the answer, I will share it with you and the Twitterverse
  • Be aware that any and all tweets are public. If you don’t want your Mother to hear it, let’s not tweet it!


BZink_2015I am happy to moderate this month’s KMbChat. I am ready to help you discover how the tools and processes of the digital universe will make your daily practice more organized, more manageable, and fun!

I help clients tell their story in an increasingly digitized and networked world. The key to getting your message heard in this noisy world is to enhance the reach of that message by working with both new and traditional media, processes, and tools. What story will you tell?

Connect with me!

Let’s continue the conversation! I’m all over the internet and looking forward to connecting with you.

Looking for more? The rest of my social media profiles are listed here.

KMb Professional Development

KMbWordCloudKnowledge mobilizers around the world talk about the skills they need to effectively mobilize knowledge. The opinions are as varied as knowledge mobilizers themselves. How do knowledge mobilizers keep their skills sharp and current? Where do we find reasonably priced and quality professional opportunities? Do we rely on yearly conferences? Do we learn online? Do we create the opportunities we need?


I love conferences. They bring our colleagues and mentors to one place in order to share knowledge and learn from one another. They give us the opportunity to meet our online connections in person. Conferences open our minds to new ideas and help motivate us to keep our skills sharp. Some of my favourite conferences for knowledge mobilizers include:

  • The former Research Transfer Network of Alberta (RTNA), now known ans the Knowledge Translation Network (KTN), annual conference was a huge opportunity for western Canada’s knowledge mobilizers to gather in Banff, Alberta. It was one of the only conferences that concentrated on knowledge mobilization. It was easily accessible and affordable for western Canadian knowledge mobilizers. It is greatly missed. Since its last conference in 2013, KT Inspiring Change, we’ve felt the void left by the lack of affordable and accessible knowledge mobilization focused professional development opportunities.
  • The Canadian Knowledge Mobilization Forum (CKF) travels the country, bringing high quality professional development opportunities to a different region each year. In 2014, the CKF14 was held in Saskatoon and provided western Canadian knowledge mobilizers the opportunity to gather and learn from one another. This conference continues to deliver quality learning opportunities on a yearly basis.

Online Learning

Online learning is another way we connect and learn. In today’s digital universe we are no longer restricted by geographic barriers or cost. Most online learning is offered free of charge, but there are some very good paid options too. Some of my favourties include:

  • Ontario Centre of Excellence for Child and Youth Mental Health’s knowledge mobilization toolkit – this toolkit covers everything we need to know about knowledge mobilization. Check out the “What is knowledge mobilization (KMb)?” section to learn more about what KMb is, why it is important, and to find out about the terminology we use in this industry. The “I’m ready to use the toolkit” section will help you plan your KMb activities. The “What are others doing?” provides inspiration and helps you connect with others already working with KMb.
  • Knowledge Mobilization Journal Club – hosted on the publicly accessible O3 forum, this journal club presents a summary of KMb related academic journal articles. Each entry is presented with an article reference, the url to the open access article, an abstract, an article summary, and key observations from a practitioners perspective. Readers are encouraged to reply to the entry and discuss the knowledge and information that matters to them.
  • #KMbChat – this Twitter chat brings knowledge mobilizers together to talk about the issues that impact their work. Practitioners, policy-makers, academics, and community-based knowledge mobilizers gather around this hashtag on the fourth Thursday of each month to share, connect, and learn. Each chat is transcribed into an easily downloadable PDF. You’ll find all the past chats listed in the #KMbChat Archives.
  • KMb Resources – this listing of KMb resources contains my favourite resources available on the web today. It is a constantly evolving list that helps keep my skills sharp.

This listing is by no means exhaustive. There are many opportunities for us to connect with, learn from, and share with one another. Ensuring that we have access to quality and economical professional development resources enables us to do our best work. Exploring new technologies, refreshing traditional skills, and learning how the new and the old combine to create a well-rounded and effective strategy is at the core of what we do.

How do you keep your skills sharp?

#KMbChat PDF: How do knowledge mobilizers “holiday?”


When: Thursday July 30, 2015 at noon EDT

Where: Twitter (follow @KMbChat and the #KMbChat hashtag at the above scheduled date and time)

Topic: How do knowledge Mobilizers “holiday?” with Ali Abbas Mehboob Hirji, Research and Project Coordinator for ORION. (@abbaspeaks)

Download the chat transcript (PDF):

What is this chat all about?

This week’s chat will explore how knowledge mobilizers are using summer down time to prepare for fall. Let’s explore:

  • Down time – Is there really such a thing during the summer?@KMbChat
  • Preparations – How are you preparing for the busier fall months?
  • KMb Activities – Are there any summer professional development opportunities that help you keep your skills sharp? How do you keep mobilizing your knowledge and maintain momentum during the summer months? What do you wrap up? What type of projects do you begin? Is summer a time for analysis?
  • Tools and Methods – Are there any tools or methods that you

July 2015 KMbChat: How do knowledge mobilizers “holiday?”


When: Thursday July 30, 2015 at noon EDT

Where: Twitter (follow @KMbChat and the #KMbChat hashtag at the above scheduled date and time)

Topic: How do knowledge Mobilizers “holiday?” with Ali Abbas Mehboob Hirji, Research and Project Coordinator for ORION. (@abbaspeaks)

What is this chat all about?

This week’s chat will explore how knowledge mobilizers are using summer down time to prepare for fall. Let’s explore:

  • Down time – Is there really such a thing during the summer?@KMbChat
  • Preparations – How are you preparing for the busier fall months?
  • KMb Activities – Are there any summer professional development opportunities that help you keep your skills sharp? How do you keep mobilizing your knowledge and maintain momentum during the summer months? What do you wrap up? What type of projects do you begin? Is summer a time for analysis?
  • Tools and Methods – Are there any tools or methods that you

Live Tweeting During a Crisis!

Social media is part of our everyday lives. Many of us stay up-to-date on world events and get our news by checking into various hashtags. More and more of us are checking our social media platforms for information on the topics and events that matter to us. But some of us are using social media platforms to share our knowledge and experience.

Amidst one of the most dangerous and serious wildfire seasons Saskatchewan has experienced to date, there are a few people who are using social media to not only report facts and figures, but to share the stories of people directly affected by the imminent danger that the wildfires in Northern Saskatchewan present.

Northern Saskatchewan Burns!

Saskatchewan is a tinderbox. Our northern forests are burning at a rate that includes three times as many hectares as what is considered normal. We’ve experienced the largest evacuation in Saskatchewan’s history with over 10 000 people evacuated from their homes and 400 000 hectares burned. These wildfires are dangerously close to destroying homes, cottages, and entire communities.

Many brave men and women are fighting these fires and hope to protect the communities in its path. Additional support from the Canadian Military, firefighters from other provinces and states, and other support people are helping to get this crisis under control. In the mean time, thousands of people are being housed in communities across Alberta and Saskatchewan. Even though they are safe from the fires’ destructive paths, they are worried about their communities and homes.  What will they return to?

 Getting to the heart of the matter…

Government organizations and media outlets are doing a good job reporting various stats and figures to help us better understand the seriousness of this situation. But facts and figures only tell us part of the story. There are a few people helping to tell the stories of the people affected. Let me introduce you to Jaydon Flett (@JadyonONO). She has been live tweeting during this crisis. In 140 characters, Flett showed us the hearts of the people affected.

A Peoples’ Story: Live Tweeting During a Crisis (@JaydonOno)

JOnoJaydon “Ono” Flett is a Cree reporter and correspondent with the Aboriginal Peoples Television Network (APTN) in Winnipeg, Manitoba. Born and raised in Manitoba, Jaydon began her career in film and television. She worked as writer, producer, and assistant director on various projects. Jaydon is now under contract with APTN National News. She is the youngest Aboriginal investigative journalist in North America.

On Thursday (July 2, 2015) Flett made her way through thick layers of ugly, orange smoke and into the community of Sucker River. Sucker River is home to approximately 400 people with two dozen of the residents volunteering to stay behind to protect homes and businesses.

Flett wanted to hear the stories of the people affected by the wildfires. An Elder, Miles Ratt, led her into the community of Sucker River. Almost every building in this community was equipped with a hastily equipped sprinkler system stemming from a muddy pond. Volunteers had chopped down trees to prevent the wildfires from spreading into the community. “There is something eerie about walking through a hazy, abandoned community, where only the clicks and hisses of sprinklers could be heard,” says Flett.

By Saturday (July 4, 2015) the wildfires had grown and the situation was dire. Flett was now in La Ronge and  unable to return to Sucker River. Conservation Officers and firefighters in La Ronge were tense and couldn’t provide any current status updates or other information about the wildfires. Flett finally connected with Chief Tammy Cook-Searson and was told that an immediate mandatory evacuation order was now in effect. The evacuees were directed to report to the local community centre.

Jaydon quickly made her way the community centre, where it was clear that panic had set in. People were arriving with only the clothes on their backs and whatever they could carry. They were confused. They did not know where they were going. They did not know if they’d have a place to stay when they got there. They did not know if or when they’d return home or whether they will have a home to return to. Jaydon wasn’t any more informed than these evacuees and decided to live tweet their stories.



Using Twitter to tell the story...

Many of us watching this crisis unfold were looking for updates and Flett provided them to us. Not only did she share facts and figures in 140 characters or less, she shared the stories of the evacuees as they were experiencing the evacuation. Here are some of their stories:




The human side of social media...

Flett told us about the human side of this situation. She used Twitter to do it. In 140 characters we were able to connect with folks and empathize with their situation. We understood the uncertainty they faced as they were leaving their homes behind. We felt their fear as they worried about what they were leaving behind. This is the power of social media in action.


Social media allows to connect to people. It is about humans connecting to humans. It helps us see the heart behind every story. In this case,Flett's use of Twitter helped many of us connect with these folks and inspired us to take action and help in any way we could. We volunteered. We donated. And we prayed.  If not for her sharing these stories on Twitter we may have missed the most important part of this crisis - the hearts of the people affected.

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