Amsterdam 2014 – Art and Space combined
“The mark of all good art is not that the thing done is done exactly or finely, for machinery may do as much, but that it is worked out with the head and the workman’s heart.” Oscar Wilde
The next stop for EODF was the wonderful city of Amsterdam.
The conference was experimental on two levels. Firstly, the conference organisers Niels Pflaeging and Nick Richmond dedicated the two days to modified Open Space. Which brought together technology of idea scale to crow-source conference presentations and discussions. Secondly, the conference was held in a working art gallery (cbk Amsterdam) which remained open to the public throughout the conference. Effectively, the conference itself became living art as conference participants and public simultaneously occupied the same space. In addition, the space itself was reconfigurable with walls being able to be moved on wheels to adjust to the different sized groups of people attending different presentations/discussions.
For the first time, participants could float around whatever session they wanted to without feeling the need to remain and could move between different sessions as and when they wanted. Leadership, Networked Organisation Design as well as Women in Organisation design were some of the subjects covered. The format allowed space to discuss topics that might not have been given the space to do so in the past including for the first-time crowed sourcing the location of the following years conference.
Without doubt, we were breaking new ground in not just what a conference might look like but also in how the barriers between speakers and delegates were being broken down allowing for emergent dialogue and recognising the expertise in the room is not necessarily just someone in front of lectern and microphone.
Blog written by Dr Stuart Wigham PhD