- Conference Venue: Make it beautiful! The usual open space set up has a large hall and few break-out rooms (perhaps with projectors and power sockets). Some groups prefer is to organize the conference in Universities. They give the venue for free and we also like to involve some folks from the University. Others prefer to pay more and be in the country at a retreat centre. It creates a family-like atmosphere that goes into the evening and encourages playfulness. Also read VenueSelectionCriteria
- Conference Entry Fee - Free. True cost of entry is that people submit position papers saying what they want to contribute or explore. This encourages reflection so people self-select to join out of interest. (Free usually means: no entry fee, and you pay your own hotel and some meals). This is accomplished via sponsorship...
- Sponsorship - We request companies/individuals to sponsor things in kind. Here is a list of things sponsors can sponsor.
- Schedule - We usually meet on Friday evening for lightning talks and social hours. Sat and Sun are pure Open Space. i.e. We open the space after breakfast on Saturday, creating the marketplace of ideas together, followed by sessions one after another until the closing circle on Sunday, with no breaks. We use the Saturday evening news / Sunday morning news circle to share information with one another and update the marketplace. Some groups include lunches and breaks, but these are not part of classic Open Space Technology.
- Open Space - We've hired an open space facilitator to facilitate the open space. It's optional, but it is real work, and that person won't get as much out of the event. So consider paying in cash or in kind, out of respect. You want to be payed when you go to work, right?
- Online Assets - Website, Wiki, Social Media is all in place, we can update the next conf info easily.
- Number of Attendees - Some groups limit the number of attendees to 100, but do what feels right for your context. Open Space itself has worked well with up to 1000 people!
The first step to organize the conf is to find a suitable date and find a suitable venue. Once we have the dates and venue in place, everything else will just fall in place. A practice that has worked: ask your network to suggest dates to avoid (so you avoid conflicts with regional school holidays, other important Agile events, etc.)
There are a number of principles that can make doing this easier...
FOR MORE INFO:
Read Deborah Hartmann Preuss' 12 Principles for Creating an AgileCoachCamp on how to create an ACC event. Add your own, too!