There are many examples of unconferences. You can find stories of unconferences I have facilitated using Open Space as a method here.
Here are links to unconferences that have taken place in different parts of the world…
“At The Diabetes UnConference, every participant is an expert. All attendees can ask and answer questions and learn from their peers in a safe setting where there is no judgement or wrong answer. Topics may include: diabetes burnout, depression, sex, discrimination, financial issues, getting inspired to exercise, family, or even what the best treatment for hypoglycemia is for each person.”
There’s a great 5-step description here…
1. Before the unconference starts, you can register your interests and session suggestions. This step allows you to prepare topics and sessions.
2. Topics are finalized and chosen on the first day:
The session suggestions are printed and stuck to a nearby wall.
Additional posters with session suggestions may be hand written and hung up.
Presenters can explain their session in a few words.
After the voting process, a speaker is chosen for the topics, for which there is no speaker.
3. Results are archived in two ways:
Attendees are requested to summarize the session in the unconference wiki.
At the end of the first unconference day, the presenters get the chance to briefly summarize their session in front of all attendees.
4. At the beginning of the second unconference day, the sessions, which have not yet been held are again examined and expanded when necessary.
5. The procedure of the first day is repeated: The results are posted into the wiki and summarized in front of all attendees.”
“Have you ever been to an unconference? If so, you might skip this. If not, the aim of GCCS-Unplugged is sharing knowledge, ideas, concerns and solutions for an open, free and save internet.
“Unconferences are fun and educational and allow you to make important connections. Anyone can come, as a speaker or just as a guest. It’s simple. You decide what topics will be discussed and convene individual breakout sessions. In other words, there is no agenda until you create it. The unstructured, high-energy environment of the unconference amplifies ideas. It’s all about conversations, an unfiltered exchange of innovative ideas.”
“An unconference is an informal self-organising event which is completely non-profit and volunteer run. “
Please add your own linked examples and I’ll include them.
This unconference for developers took place in 2014. It’s a good example of using social media and straming video as part of an in-person gathering.
Adding an unconference element to a more traditional conference event …
“The day features lightning talks, open space conversations and a challenge: how can we unleash people-led digital innovation in health and wellbeing? The answer to this question will take the shape of a White Paper with a series of recommendations for future action.”
“… a regional unconference for librarians, public health professionals, community health workers, medical professionals, community organizers, and others interested in improving programs and services that promote community health and health information. FREE to attend!… An unconference is an informal, participant-driven event. Attendees will select and manage all discussion topics and sessions.”
This unconference has a clear set of processes whilst keeping the spirit of some self-organising of the agenda…
“The principles are simple:
No presentations or talk tracks (that format is reserved for the conference)
Live coding sessions
Poster session during lunch
New! A group dinner to cap off the Unconference! (see below)
The agenda is also simple:
One session of two hours in the morning
A simple lunch shared among all the Unconference attendees
Two sessions of 1.5 hours in the afternoon
Synchronized sessions to make it easy to move from one to another”
Do add your own linked examples and I will include them.
Visit the Unconference Realm