Co-Conferencing or not
Looking back to the PMOZ 2008 i found another interesting article / post on the web that describes a different experience around the conference.
Pat Byrne from holistech held the following presentations
- Understanding the Complexity of Program Management, Co-authored with Graham Durant-Law (Presentation)
and addresses the Co-Conference approach (PMOZ and SEPG) and describes his experience in the in the following way:
Overall, I think the co-conference is a great idea. But there are a few challenges and none of them detract from the co-conference concept.
One of the challenges I suspect from my chats with a few people at the conference and from my experience at other events, is that it is an easy transition from the software/systems engineering perspective to move into a project management forum, because project management is so much a part of software/systems engineering. But the other way around is problematic. If a project manager has experience in the software, defence or aerospace industries, then software/systems engineering isn’t so foreign. But if you are a project manager in say construction or civil engineering, then going to a software/systems engineering presentation at a conference means you can be confronted with gobbledygook.
I suspect that PMOz/SEPG got this balance about right, particularly with some of their joint keynotes. But I also suspect that an offering of „systems engineering basics“ for project managers may perhaps be useful – more so than „project management basics“ for systems engineers (although I do note there were some interesting workshops suitable for either stream).
Pat is absolutely right, the combination is worth doing, but there have been far to many streams in parallel (7 streams) where the co-conference approach doesnt achieve what Pat is mentioning, you have so many topics and by far cant attend as many as you wish and want. Some times more is less what i mentioned in one of my previous posts. An Pat is referring to that as well with the following recommendation:
Perhaps a worthwhile objective would be to have a single stream for the combined conference for refereed academic papers. This might be accompanied by a properly put together electronic journal published by the combined conference. I have no doubt this would be well received and would assist in that integration of theory and practice so necessary for the professions to progress.
And as he says, may be something to consider for 2009.