One of the fun parts of this work is to help make great experiences and introduce folks to Open Space. At the Java One Conference i got to meet Sinsato who is working on an unconference in Montana who I invited to the Internet Identity Workshop. He had a great time:
Kaliya was kind enough to invite me to attend the Internet Identity Workshop. Since JavaOne Camp had few attendees, I was not able to experience the full beauty of an unconference using the Open Space method until I went to the IIW. It was awesome! All these techies gathered in a circle and then lined up to describe the topics they would discuss and put them on a big sheet that set the agenda for the day. And then people met and talked and wandered between events. This amazing unconference happened with some preparation, but much less than a traditional conference, and the interactions were so much richer than is usually feasible at a more traditional conference where the agenda is hard wired before the event begins.
At the event, Kaliya introduced me to the wonderful Lisa Heft who is an Open Space facilitator and trainer of Open Space facilitators. I was amazed to learn that Open Space has been used in corporate board rooms, technical conferences, intentional and co-housing meetings, between Israeli’s and Palestinians, with United Nations groups, and more.
Lisa is leading a training on Open Space next week in San Francisco.