Greenpeace Greenwire 3.0

Greenpeace uses Drupal to empower, grow volunteering

600% increase in volunteering with award winning social intranet Greenwire. Read this case below.

Greenpeace uses Drupal to empower, grow volunteering

600% increase in volunteering with award winning social intranet Greenwire


Greenpeace is the most visible environmental organization in the world that aims a greener planet. It fights for a healthy and sustainable balance between the environment and humans. She brings environmental issues to the attention of politicians and the public through nonviolent actions and confrontations. Greenpeace is active in the most of the world, and she has tens of thousands of global volunteers.

More about Greenpeace? Read her story here.


With millions of site visitors and over 2.5 million Facebook likes, Greenpeace gets thousands of requests every year from all over the world asking whether people can “do something” for the organization. Unfortunately, the organization was not able to respond to all requests. It didn’t have any way to offer these potential volunteers good options for converting their ideas and energy into actions.


Greenpeace gave us a mandate that was challenging, yet perfectly fit the values of the company and the broader Drupal community: “We want to create the best open-source social platform ever made by mankind and save the planet. No pressure ;)".

The goal that Greenpeace pursues with Greenwire is clear: more active volunteers and more volunteer-driven activities should enable Greenpeace to make more of a difference for a greener planet. And it works (see the results further on this case)! Greenpeace want to be running in roughly 40 regions and 60 languages by the end of 2016.

Greenpeace Greenwire 3.0

Greenpeace Greenwire

To enable the thousands of volunteers to help make the planet greener, Greenpeace created its own online participation network: Greenpeace Greenwire. The Greenpeace Greenwire platform allows employees and volunteers to contact and talk with each other, exchange ideas, and make plans for events, campaigns, or actions. In addition to participating in existing Greenpeace activities, volunteers can develop their own activities and constituencies to support the Greenpeace mission.

Collaboration is the central theme of the Greenpeace Greenwire platform, from conception to implementation and improvement. From the start, the global community of employees and volunteers has collectively determined the manner in which the community has developed. The platform grows and changes based on their ideas and comments. Once a month, the managers of each country meet to discuss new developments and determine priorities. The Greenpeace product owners and GoalGorilla’s project managers then collaborate to meet the community’s ongoing digital needs.

More technical details? Read the technical case study about the Greenpeace Greenwire platform here on

Award winning social intranet

Greenpeace Greenwire won the Dutch Interactive Award 2015 in the category Social & Communities. The jury about Greenwire: ‘The Airbnb for volunteers. A global case with impact and great scalability. Beautiful platform to connect people. Interesting concept because the organisation is turned upside down and the community, of motivated volunteers is empowered. A case with great potential.’

Award winning social intranet

Future proof with Greenwire version 3.0

Since the initial launch in 2011, the Greenpeace Greenwire platform has grown into an international project. At the moment, we are working on the 3.0 version of Greenpeace Greenwire. The development of Greenpeace Greenwire 3.0 is a collaboration between GoalGorilla and Lemberg, our Drupal development partner in Ukraine.

Greenpeace’s goal for version 3.0 was to create an easy to use platform for every device: responsive design was the key. This means reorganizing information so it fits on both the smallest and largest screen with one codebase. The second requirement was that we take performance into account, because they also need to enable volunteers who rely on a poor connection in third-world countries. Both points are really important for Greenpeace, because some parts of the world only have internet on mobile devices.

We started the redesign traject at the beginning of 2015. For us, it was the first project where we did all design directly in the browser (people normally use photoshop or illustrator to create the visuals). There was no separate rounds of interaction design, graphical design and theming. In total the team spent around 16 months of 1.5 FTE designing the 3.0 version.

responsive webdesign Greenwire open social intranet

Besides a new look and a responsive design, Greenwire 3.0 also brings a new functionality. You now have more control over the emails you receive, while on screen notifications will alert you to new messages within the platform. We’ve also improved profile pages, the private messaging interface, and the way you manage your friends. Below is an overview of three new features.

1. Email preferences

You can now change your email notifications to your individual requirements. For example, if you manage a group, you might want to get every notification, but for other groups you only want a daily overview. You can set preferences for the update categories:

  1. Messages to me: every message that concerns you personally (private message, friend request, shout, reply or mention);
  2. What I follow: updates of groups, events, news and media that you follow;
  3. What I manage: all groups, events, news and media that you manage.

2. Notifications

When you log in, you’ll see a notification in the top right of the screen (like Facebook and other platforms). If you click on the notification, it takes you to your message.

Notifications in Greenwire

3. Profile pages

The profile pages have been redesigned. All profile information is now in one place. The profile page has blocks instead of tabs. Which gives a better overview. And it has more the feeling of the profile pages of social media who we all know.

Why Drupal

Greenpeace Greenwire is designed and built with Drupal, the open source CMS. Greenpeace has chosen Drupal for its open source community and values, technical flexibility and scalability, and proven security. The philosophy of open source software is a good fit for Greenpeace.

Open Social

Based on Greenwire’s success case, we are creating a social community, approachable for any global volunteer organisation: Open Social. We learned a lot during the development of Greenwire 1, 2 and 3 and we use all these lessons learned in Open Social to make this product even better. Open Social empowers people to effectively collaborate and organize their events and tasks. It replaces traditional intranets, and it stimulates bottom-up organizational innovation. Choose Open Social for your volunteer organisation as well:

  • Engage: reach your audience with rich content. Both public on the web and private within the community;
  • Collaborate: share ideas in closed and public groups to grow your communities shared knowledge;
  • Organize: plan and subscribe your community members to closed and public events;
  • Find talent: a powerful profile search allows your organization to find talent within your community;
  • Connect on the go: fully optimized for mobile, you keep in touch with your community wherever you go;
  • Secure and private: login and notifications use encryption, and privacy settings keep your data private.

Are you interested in a social community for your volunteer organisation?

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open social intranet


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