I was very hopeful and encouraged that last year’s Unitarian Universalist Association General Assembly (UUA GA) tried a version of an Unconference process within the main program, but was worried that its peculiar adaptations and schedule conflicts — plus its novelty to seasoned GA participants — would doom it.
Reviews from people on the ground were not glowing. (See the comments.)
And doomed it is. From the “Report to the Board on the September 2007 General Assembly and Mission of the
Association Partnership (GAMAP) and General Assembly Planning Committee (GAPC) Meetings” (PDF link) to the UUA Board of Trustees meeting later this month
Open Space at the 2007 GA received mixed reviews from both the GA feedback session and post-GA evaluations. Instead of repeating Open Space,Â GA 2008 will include facilitated small group discussions among lay and professional congregation leaders to inform the Board of Trusteesâ€™ ends (goals) development for our Association of Congregations. These discussions are scheduled during a three-hour period on Thursday afternoon. Some programming scheduled for other times will be offered to those not attending the discussions.
From open-ended to facilitatedÂ in one year. Of course, with the jam-packed schedule and alternate programming, I bet these sessions will be pretty lightly attended anyway. What a shame and a lost opportunity.