Case study

Building Drupal-powered knowledge management platform for UNICEF

Building Drupal-powered knowledge management platform for UNICEF

Industry

Non-Profit

Location

New York, NY, US

Unicef

Focus

Knowledge Management Platform - a portal for sharing UNICEF's valuable information with stakeholders and the public.

Services

API

Drupal Development

UX & UI Design

UNICEF wanted to share its extensive knowledge library with external partners, including donors, stakeholders, and the general public.

In response to UNICEF's diverse user requirements, we, along with the stakeholders, decided to design and develop two Drupal websites: Clearing House, bridging UNICEF's internal SharePoint Libraries with a secure Drupal intermediary layer, and Knowledge at UNICEF, a publicly accessible, multilingual platform for content search and publishing.

Live website
A group of child students
Girls playing with water
Students looking out of window
Girls students reading newspaper
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The challenges

The client wanted a seamless integration of the knowledge management platform with the SharePoint Library while also ensuring security for their public website.

This meant, our teams had to find an efficient way to share critical information with UNICEF's external partners while maintaining robust security measures on their public-facing platform.

The approach

In our research phase, it became clear that streamlining and standardizing UNICEF's online platforms was necessary. To achieve this, we created a strategic approach to develop code and configurations tailored for Clearing House and Knowledge at UNICEF, with the flexibility to extend their applicability to other UNICEF websites.

This approach helped simplify the process of reusing shared elements across multiple platforms, to establish a cohesive user experience throughout the organization's digital landscape.

For UNICEF's Knowledge Management platform, we chose Drupal for its brilliant CMS and decided to build two separate websites: Clearing House, which stores documents and media from UNICEF's SharePoint system through API integration, and Knowledge at UNICEF, which serves as the public-facing site and uses content from Clearing House.

The solution

UNICEF Knowledge Management Platform Mockups

Cohesive design

To create a cohesive user experience, we implemented a consolidated homepage featuring country-specific information. This design allows users to seamlessly switch between regions while experience remains consistent.

It offers a central solution for users to access a single source of truth across multiple country sites, covering diverse media

Cohesive design

Full-text search

Seamless integration of full-text search into UNICEF's Knowledge Management platform empowered users to effortlessly conduct comprehensive site-wide or country-specific searches, streamlining access to critical information across the organization

UNICEF Knowledge Management Platform Mockups

Clearing House

The Clearing House website serves as a hub for various types of information, including audio, video, images, and more. This content is stored as media and is accessible through a public API.

By making use of this API, other websites can seamlessly share UNICEF's technical knowledge. They can achieve this by embedding media via iframes or providing simple download links.
Users find it easy to approve documents on SharePoint and publish them directly on the Clearing House website. The metadata from SharePoint documents is queued and routinely synchronized, ensuring that the content remains up-to-date, typically refreshing every 2-3 minutes.

Clearing House

Clearing House, as a publisher website extends an invitation to other websites to subscribe to new content via OAuth 2.0 authentication. Currently, Knowledge at UNICEF is the only subscriber. Whenever fresh documents or media become available within the Clearing House, they are promptly dispatched to the Knowledge website.
UNICEF's forward-thinking approach includes safeguarding certain content, which is why the Clearing House facilitates other websites' subscriptions through OAuth 2.0 authenticated REST API.

This framework enables the Clearing House to implement access rules for the content they publish, ensuring it remains secure and accessible to those who need it.

Knowledge at UNICEF

The Knowledge at UNICEF site serves as a hub for various microsites covering diverse geographies and categories like Health, Migrant Children, Water and Sanitation, and more. UNICEF's content authors can seamlessly access Clearing House documents within the Knowledge admin interface.

The content authors can then enhance the documents by creating articles that provide valuable context to complex information, making it more accessible to a wider audience.

The outcome

We established a robust workflow that simplifies access to information across various websites. Content authors now have the flexibility to create and update information based on Clearing House documents and share them on the Knowledge site.
Content can be added to microsites or the global site, and both the Clearing House and Knowledge site offer easy search and sorting options. The page builder tool empowers content teams to craft homepages and other basic pages effortlessly.

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