Diabetapedia: “Google” for Diabetes “Diabetes doesn’t define you… so define diabetes”Click Here for Additional Resources

A conversation with Laura Kolodjeski (see bio), Community Manager, Sanofi US diabetes, and Michele Polz (see bio), Senior Director, Patient Solutions, Sanofi US diabetes, about Diabetapedia, which is a new social media site designed to help meet the educational needs of diabetes community.

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Diabetapedia (di-ah-bee-tah-pee-dee-ah) is a new site “to help meet educational needs of diabetes community.” According to Laura Kolodjeski, the goal is to create “a single, comprehensive place where anyone can find and share definitions of diabetes-related terms and phrases.” The site’s tag line is “Diabetes doesn’t define you… so define diabetes.”

Dennis Urbaniak, Vice President, U.S. Diabetes at Sanofi US, says Diabetapedia “enables people to find definitions of common diabetes-related terms and phrases not easily found online. Additionally, Diabetapedia has a community-driven crowd-sourcing aspect — we are also seeking input on the terms and definitions.”

The name “Diabetapedia” invokes a comparison to “Wikipedia,” the online encyclopedia comprised of user-generated content. Diabetapedia does accept contributions from visitors who can use a form on the site to suggest a new term. To use the site, however, you first search for a term as if you were using Google. In fact, the site’s home page has the simple look of a “Google” for diabetes site: a single large box for entering a term located under a large logo:

Diabetapedia Logo

Questions/Topics Discussed

  • Decribe the site, its goals and how it works. Who in the diabetes community helps you create content for the site?
  • Where did the idea for Diabetapedia come from?
  • Where do most of the definitions currently come from? Most definitions seem to come from definitions from the Merriam-Webster Dictionary. Why? What about other trusted sources, such as the National Diabetes Information Clearinghouse Diabetes Dictionary? Those defeinitions are freely available to any body (non-copyright).
  • You accept definitions and corrections from visitors. How is that working? Have you received very many responses? What’s the policy on acceptable contributions?
  • What’s your perspective on including products as part of Diabetapedia? For example, non-brandnames could be used to avoid regulatory problems, no?
  • What are the future plans for the site? Any improvements envisioned? (See survey below if you have ideas for improvement.) Do you plan to release a Diabetapedia mobile application?

Guest Bios

Laura KolodjeskiLaura Kolodjeski is the Community Manager for Sanofi US diabetes. As a community manager, Laura spends the majority of her time actively connecting with, listening to, and learning from people living with diabetes.

Laura joined Sanofi US, in January 2009, within a team dedicated to innovating the way the company does business. In keeping with her passion to drive change, Laura moved into this newly created role within U.S. Diabetes Patient Solutions in August of 2010. Why? Because she believes in the powerful vision Sanofi has for the Diabetes Division and the people it serves.

Michele PolzMichele Polz is Senior Director, Patient Solutions, Sanofi US diabetes. Michele is an experienced business strategist and innovator with an ability to work within a complex and ambiguous environment to drive rigorous, fact-based recommendations to management & achieve impact through influence. Michele has experience structuring & leading multiple initiatives to achieve business goals.

Michele has an extensive network of partners & thought leaders in healthcare, technology, start-ups, academic & non-profit communities. She is has a proven ability to influence and effectively communicate ideas to management and potential partners.

Additional Resources


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