From Gathering11 to a worldwide WE?

Last weekend I was at Gathering11 in Melbourne, Australia. It was an unconference and all about building better futures. I really liked the vibes and the people – some outstanding presentation (more to come on this) from working groups happened. For me it was a great opportunity to put WE_australia together to learn more about the continent. It is my first time here – and it won’t be my last time!

Christine Egger, who was involved in the organization of Gathering11 asked me aftre the event about my thoughts on how to proceed. She typed the following while I was talking. Christine, thanks for that!

These are the kind of conferences I really like – where there is an “un” before conference. For me, Australia was the last continent to visit. I can definitely say that this entire online movement for the good is a worldwide movement. An understanding of we – to build better futures – it’s worldwide. There might be differences when you go to Africa, they don’t have internet connectivity, but [they connect] with mobiles. The way they think, act, contribute to these changes – which are necessary to get the world to the next level – that’s all about the same.

I think the crowd [at Gathering ’11] wasn’t the regular business crowd, so therefore I think the people are very enthusiastic. They don’t have any kind of hidden agenda. They were very open. I think it’s good to have a day like [the unconference Day 3 at Hub Melbourne] to follow-up to really try to get something out of it. The last half hour yesterday was for me too short to get this. You should have at least a half-day to deeply think about what to do with it. It’s easy to leave and think “somehow.” Stuff like this [unconference day] should go on for a full week.

It isn’t necessary to build prototypes but to get a better understanding of what people are going for, to achieve some kind of common understanding. It’s really ridiculous in this networked world that there are people here thinking about all of this, and probably twenty other groups in the US doing the same thing, and in Europe. Why can’t we create something really global and act locally? Today we have all these opportunities to do these worldwide things. This is something which I would really love to see and hopefully will see in my lifetime. We have all of this common understanding. We don’t have to reproduce another ten Gathering’s worldwide. We have to define how we can go into different parts of the world and think about what we can do to achieve these things. I’d love to see a connection between these local unconferences, and build this network for the good.

Yesterday, in the last half hour – all of this we were talking about doesn’t end in the Pacific Ocean when you leave Australia. You have to build local. The time for some kind of world governance on a very democratic basis – we might be ready for it. Today I see people very engaged. Translating what they’ve learned in the last two days should have been done yesterday. There are many new faces today, maybe a third [of people here were not at Gathering ’11]. There are ten other events already in this world who handle the same thing. I’m really not convinced we have to do these things all over again if we do live in a connected world and we trust our peers.