What is it?
Open Space Technology (OST) is a way of organizing meetings that can be focused on a specific task, but without any formal agenda. The agenda is created by the participants themselves. The approach is characterized by a few basic mechanisms:
- a broad, open invitation that articulates the purpose of the meeting;
- participant chairs arranged in a circle;
- a "bulletin board" of issues and opportunities posted by participants;
- a "marketplace" with many breakout spaces that participants move freely between, learning and contributing as they "shop" for information and ideas;
- a "breathing" or "pulsation" pattern of flow, between plenary and small-group breakout sessions.
Why is it DIY?
There is no prepared or designed content to an Open Space meeting. The only thing that is facilitated is the methodology. Everthing else comes from the participants themselves.