Open Space Proceedings

Are you running a public conference with Open Space?

Are you looking to produce a great proceedings document?

Then, this post is for you.


Open Space Proceedings

Open Space proceedings in public Agile conference events do not … repeat,  do not.. have to be lame.

If you have attended a public Open Space event inside an Agile conference, you know exactly what I am talking about. The proceedings are often weak, hard to read, just kind of thrown together….or even non-existent.

Most public Agile conferences that have Open Space do not produce proceedings at all!

In 2011 in Boston, Agile Boston (see link below) did an event called Agile Day 2011. We had some speakers in the morning and did an Open Space meeting in the afternoon. For the Open Space segment in the afternoon, we created some innovations around the creation of Proceedings.

The method we developed is now known as the Agile Boston method. It is simple. It produces great proceedings. There’s a link at the end of this post, to a sample Proceedings document produced using this method.


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  • We delivered a document with hundreds of pages, just THREE HOURS after the event ended. Before people were done with dinner  that night, they had a link to the 90MB Proceedings PDF in their In-Box.
  • Every single session’s report from the Open Space was in the document
  • The text for each session was searchable. You could search your own name and find the sessions you attended. You could search ANY word or name you were looking for.
  • Every flip-chart artifact created in each session was there, as a JPG, in the PDF.
  • We included the slides from every single speaker in the AM
  • We included the pre-conference web pages, describing the event
  • We included information from all the Sponsors

Usually, a copy, or image is made of the messy handwritten report from the session, and that just gets thrown into the proceedings. Maybe! And it’s not searchable.

The reality is that with Agile conferences, you are lucky if you get even this. Because normally, there are no proceedings at all coming out of Open Space events convened inside public Agile conferences.

Take a look at the Proceedings document we produced. You might be wondering how we were able to deliver this just THREE HOURS after the event. Everyone who attended the event received a document that had all the slides from all the speakers, a full description of the event, pictures from the event….and the Open Space proceedings….with searchable text…all in one neat package.

If you like the results, send me an email and I’ll gladly explain to you how we did this. There’s a few tricks. Other than that, it’s simple. Any conference producer using the Open Space meeting format can make proceedings this good.

The PDF doc is 90MB, and takes some time to download. After it downloads, skip to the last, bottom third of the document to see the proceedings from the Open Space. (The first 1/2 of the document contains sponsor info, speakers slides, and the conference description.)


Related Links:

Agile Boston (link)

Agile Day 2011 (link)

Agile Day 2011 Proceedings (90MB PDF, link)