Still energized thanks to the success of the chat show, I woke up bright and early and got myself ready for the new challenge: holding a World Café with 70 Eastern and Southern Africa colleagues.
The room we were assigned was nice and hospitable. They had provided us with real tablecloths which I covered with 8 pieces of flipchart paper. To spice up the tables in the absence of flowers, I had got some Swiss chocolate in Zurich and put these on the tables.
I took a deep breath as my 70 colleagues filed in the room. Each table hosted 6 people. It was a challenge to stop people from moving chairs from one table to another. As the participants were coming in I asked them to form tables with a good mix of different roles and functions, different types of projects from different countries, gender balance and with at least one member of another Eastern and Southern Africa thematic networks.
I briefed the participants on the methodology, which was a mix of individual work, World Café and reporting back in the plenary. I must thank two wonderful people - Nancy White and Dan Newman - as I applied a lot of their facilitation techniques and methods in this session.
We started off with an individual exercise - which I borrowed from Dan's methodology - SCAN-FOCUS-ACT. I asked the participants to use the post-its on their table to jot down 3 priority activities that they would like to do together with the network. After which we clustered the activities. We used this output as the basis for the World Café.
The instructions for the World Café were to prioritize the priorities, identify three activities for the three strategic components of the network (a) capacity building, (b) knowledge harvesting and (c) policy dialogue and answer the following 8 questions:
- Why is it important?
- Who is it for?
- How will it be done?
- What are the expected results?
- When will it start and what is the expected completion date?
- How will you monitor the impact and results of this activity?
- How will these activities link up with and/or use the knowledge and experience of ESA thematic networks? (How will the ESA thematic networks integrate with IFADAfrica?)
More on World Café at: http://www.theworldcafe.com/