How an unconference is different from a conference

3 things: 


Conference agendas are set in advance. The organisers select speakers and agree times. You know who'll talk and when.


Unconference agendas are created by attendees. The organisers create the space. The attendees fill it with discussions. There are many ways to do this. It happens at the start of the unconference.


Conference rooms are usually in theatre style. All attendees face the stage. Your focus is the speaker. Conference workshops might be cabaret style. You work with attendees on your table. You take direction from the stage. 

Unconference rooms contain 1 circle of chairs. Attendees face each other. Your focus is each other. Ideally there's no other furniture. The only thing between you is space. 


Conference rules benefit the speakers. Attendees sit quietly and listen. There's usually a presentation. Interruptions are frowned up on. There might be time for questions at the end.

Unconference rules benefit attendees. You can get up and move between discussions, at will. You can do this at any time. There's no presentations - they're frowned up on. You can speak at will. Facilitation is optional. Discussion is encouraged.

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This text © 2024 by James Arthur Cattell is licensed under CC BY 4.0.