Designing a knowledge management platform to facilitate EU Accession

Social • United Nations Office for Project Services

UNOPS Western Balkans knowledge platform

Background & Objectives

Knowledge for Reform Action (K4RA) in the Western Balkans is a project launched by Norway and implemented by UNOPS to assist Western Balkan countries accede to the European Union. UNOPS recognized the need for a knowledge management platform to provide access to resources on necessary pre-accession reforms.

We were tasked with designing a website that would enable private and public knowledge sharing between Albania, Kosovo, Bosnia-Herzegovina, North Macedonia, Montenegro, and Serbia (known collectively as WB6) and with positioning the platform as a leading resource for Western Balkan countries.

  1. Develop a knowledge sharing platform

    WB6 countries can rely on for pre-accession reform expertise and support.

  2. Establish the platform

    as the leading resource for up-to-date information on current and future programs.

  3. Create an improved

    collaborative experience between UNOPS and project members.

How can we strengthen the capacity of WB6 countries to succeed in national reform agendas to stimulate seamless European accession?

What was. the big project question?

User Research and Analysis

We began the expansion of the website by focusing on workshops with UNOPS staff to understand their overall goals and objectives for the redesigned knowledge platform. Through these collaborative sessions, we defined the user audience and found that donors, government decision-makers, and partners of the K4RA initiative were the main users of the website. Our content and asset planning integrated the needs of these three stakeholders as the primary users of the platform while also maintaining the needs of the general audience when selecting content for the website .

We analyzed the user journey with scenario planning and identified potential issues users faced when accessing the website. This helped us determine how to simplify the website functions for a faster and easier user experience.

Content Modeling and UX Design

We designed the platform so users could share all content types, including text, video, images, event updates and secure documents. The user research stage determined which components would be added to the content model to prioritize usability.

The goal was to model a platform with the capability to provide both UNOPS consultants and WB6 stakeholders with ways to communicate through different content types while mitigating their respective privacy concerns and user difficulties. We designated what would be public and country-specific material on the website by illustrating the relationship between different elements and data points to determine which users could access specific resources.

Our architecture optimized the web content to increase the platform’s loading efficiency in low-bandwidth areas and was the foundation for our UX design.

Visual Redesign

With a focus on representing the countries in partnership for K4RA, our design team developed a color palette based on the colors of the UNOPS logo, flags of Norway and the WB6 countries. The logo has 6 flexible forms to be used depending on the project content. The name of the project was simplified to KRA Western Balkans to be recognizable in smaller sizes.

What were the outcomes?

As of the end of 2022, the project was ready to launch.