What is Open Space?

Opening Circle

Open Space Technology (OST) is a workshop format that allows a group of people to work together on a common problem. Identify the key issues and characterize them in bounded time. The time frame of a workshop is typically a day but can be extended for complex issues and streamlined for fast tracking timely issues. The group size is typically from 20 to 100 people, but can be expanded beyond this with suitable logistics. To run OST there must first beĀ  a well defined problem opportunity statement and a sincere open minded spirit of enquiry. The OST process will then allow a group of people to have all the conversations they need to have, to document all those conversations, to collaborate with all the right people, and to reach a shared consensus on the best way forward.

Setting the agenda

OST is an Open Source technology, originally invented by Harrison Owen in 1985. It  has since been successfully used throughout the world for over thirty years for workshops on subjects as diverse as international conflict, to technology problems, to discussions on new organizational solutions.