I’m Programme Chair for the international Service Design in Government conference next year. Now in its sixth year, it’s a hands-on, practical event for anyone involved in designing and delivering better public services. It remains probably the leading event of its kind, and draws people from around the world.

I’m on a mission to get you to come speak at it.

People often ask “I’m doing X, I’m not sure that’s what you’re looking for?”. …

As Programme Chair for both UX in the City: Manchester and Service Design in Government I hear from lots of people that they aren’t sure sure what they could speak about, what would make a good session, or what to include in their proposal. So here is my collected advice on how to pick a good talk topic, and what I look for when reviewing submissions.

This post was originally written during the open call for speakers for the 2019 conferences.

Trust me, you have something to share

Lots of people tell me they’d like to try speaking at a conference, but don’t think they have anything interesting to share. Every time, within five or ten minutes we’ve found at least one really useful thing they could talk about — if not several. …

Holding a weekly team meeting is a common tactic for building a community of practice. Booking a room and picking a time each week to get together for an hour with others working in the same discipline is a pretty low-friction way to get started.

But having attended and run a lot of these meetings, I’ve found there is a big difference in how purposeful and productive they are. …

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