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These are the proceedings from meetings of the Open Space Institute.
  • Meeting Date: 16 Oct 2018

    Present: Barry Owen, Mark Sheffield, Karen J. Davis, Kevin O'Brien, Tricia Chirumbole

    A minute of silence, everyone checked in, Harold volunteered to be note taker, and Kevin as facilitator.

    Bin Gardening - we added a few items

    WOSonOS 2018

    Harold is the only board member attending WOSonOS. Harold will approach Kari and offer $500 and encourage him to use those funds to help reduce attendance costs especially for local Iceland people.

    Harold will ask for Kari to list OSIUS as a sponsor on the website.

    WOSonOS 2019 in U.S. of A.

    Harold is planning to welcome WOSonOS 2019 to come to the United States in the D.C. area. We may be competing with China for WOSonOS 2019. Harrison may be able to attend in D.C. as he is no longer traveling anymore. Suzanne had encouraged the China folks if they would attend. Harold will speak with the China attendees before making the invitation. If we hold it, it's likely to be September or October.

    International House 2019

    Suzanne Daigle and Karen Davis are working on an invitation, and we'lre working from there. There was some trouble with the Bank of America check so the initial 1000 deposit check was rejected. It's not clear why.

    Move Bank Account out of Bank of America

    Harold will move to Missoula Federal Credit Union. They have mobile phone deposits. There maybe other options for credit unions that support non-profits, but it might be easier to move afterwards. The Board is supporting the change to MFCU. Kevin will be the backup signer.

    GDPR Examples, Guidance

    Harold did some investigation and the website does use a cookie, so we should add the GDPR notice about cookies. It is possible to only show the notice for E.U. countries, but despite how annoying it is, it's good to signal compliance for this requirement, whether or not we agree with how its being done. We'll operate the cookie acknowledgement for all visitors, not just those from the European Union.

    State of Open Space Survey

    We've spoken about this in the past. The first step we've discussed is simply reaching out to the community about the opportunity and seeing if anyone had thoughts or references to helping design such a survey. The OSI-US could possibly invest some funds for survey development as this would be a research topic. We could possibly engage a PhD student to help design the survey. Harold will send out a note to the OSList before the WOSonOS in Iceland. Barry noted there are a lot of people wandering into the Facebook group. It would be fun to market the survey to the Facebook Group. There are 2,572 members of the Facebook Open Space Technology group. There is a lot of potential through Social Media, which is growing compared to the email based OSList, which is starting to look like a "dinosaur" in comparison. Kevin mentioned Organizational Network Analysis. One way they do the work is to survey groups. They also do the work with information from Social Media. There are tools that analysts use to understand organizational networks. Debra France is from Kevin's former company, Gore associates. Kevin knows the one who runs ConnectedCommons who is connected to academia. Kevin will reach out to Debra.


    The next meeting - Tuesday November 20, 6pm eastern.

    We closed with checkouts at 7:30pm edt.

  • Meeting Date: 17 Sep 2018

    Minutes from the September board meeting:

    Present: Tricia, Kevin, Harold, Mark
    Not present: Karen, Barry

    Moment of Silence & Check-ins


    Harold attended Agile Open Southern California and promoted the OSI-US in the circle and in an Agile Coffee podcast last weekend. He also mentioned that an open space event is likely to happen at his current corporate client.

    WOSonOS 2018:

    Barry might attend; Harold might; Karen might; Tricia, Kevin, Mark not attending

    No updates; no decisions or actions needed

    WOSonOS 2019:

    Are we interested in proposing? If we're not in Iceland, who & how to propose? Location identified. Date depends on Karen's schedule

    International House 2019:

    $1,000 sent to the venue; we are committed to that venue for Peace & High Performance 2019. Large rate increase may happen after 2019

    Membership & Contact List Communication | GDPR examples, guidance | "State of Open Space"

    In Harold's hands.

    Kevin's game that "Opens Space"

    Kevin works for a company that is creating a Virtual Reality game for training leaders; the game might have applications for Open Space

    Clean Language

    A helpful modality for generating the Theme and other prework, and for promoting Open Space. Helps facilitator become more fully present and invisible. We should test using Clean Language for prework and promoting Open Space before publicizing it as a technique.

    Peace & High Performance 2018

    A few financial items & final report remain to be done. Harold is working on those items

    Online Open Space for Multistakeholder facilitator sustainability

    Moved to "parked indefinitely"

    Front Porch Chat Virtual invitation

    Harold has some, wants more videos. Make this item into an ongoing program, with a formal website page - Harold will make the page.

    Professor Emma Bell- Unconference research

    Harold will follow up with her.

    "Understanding Open Space" CDs

    Harrison Owen approved giving it away for free. Proposal: make it a benefit of OSI-US membership, available on the OSI-US website - Kevin will research technical details (Sound Cloud, etc).

    Respectfully submitted,
    Mark Sheffield

  • Meeting Date: 21 Aug 2018

    Present: Harold Shinsato, Karen J. Davis, Barry Owen, Mark Sheffield

    Sponsoring WOSonOS 2018

    Harold and Barry are thinking of attending, but have not yet bought tickets. We are hoping to do the invitation for WOSonOS 2019. We might not attend and the invitation might not happen if Karen can't do it in October, as November is probably too late.

    Peace and High Performance 2019

    Karen Davis and Suzanne Daigle are working on the invitation. Harrison Owen probably won't be there, but we still hope to invite him to speak via teleconferencing like he did this January. We are wondering about inviting Paul Levy or Peggy Holman.


    No work has been done on the website. It might take a while. There probably are no cookies being used until people log in.

    State of Open Space Survey

    Harold is still hoping to send out a note to the OSList about our intentions.

    Clean Language

    Caitlyn Walker is a Clean Language instructor doing reat work. She wrote a book titled From Contempt to Curiosity. It comes from David Walker, a part Maori pyschotherapist, using very simple methods for talking to clients. It seems like it would be helpful for discussing the theme with the hosts and setting up a successful Open Space event.

    Next Meeting

    We will move the meeting to Monday September 17, same time, 6pm EDT.

  • Meeting Date: 24 Jul 2018

    OSIUS Board Meeting Tuesday July 24, 2018 @ 6:00-7:30 EST

    Present: Kevin O'Brien, Barry Owen, Tricia Chirumbole, Harold Shinsato, Mark Sheffield

    Check ins

    Barry agreed to take notes

    Mark was designated the “Bin Wrangler”

    Mark stated the bin items we would discuss, and we dove in.

    Practice of Peace 2019 update from Karen via email 7/24/2018

    “As mentioned previously, if I’m able to connect tonight, it will only be a short time cuz our music festival guests and activities are underway.

    In the meantime, know that the International House gathering dates are finally confirmed by them for 1820 January 2019.  I’m working on the contract with Claribel and will let Harold know when to send the deposit.

    FYI, about WOSonOS:  Suzanne Daigle has had to cancel out of Iceland.

    Regret not being fully with you tonight, other than in spirit!

    Peace, love and laughter.

     Karen “

    Harold mentioned that it would be nice to have Harrison on the big screen as was done in 2018 . . . not a fan of having 2 “Big Screen Guests” but maybe “Somebody Else” to give a talk in person with housing, transportation paid, and “$1,000” . . . Perhaps someone from Europe?

    GDPR Compliance and “Membership Commmunication”

    • Harold wanting to move this forward in terms of “Opt-in” or “Opt-out” and how to do this in an effective way

    • Membership contact list is currently @ 1200 people

    • Harold and Mark talked about the possibility of Mark doing some of the “Back end Website” work in DRUPAL . . . but then there was concern that it “Breaks” easily and could create a big mess if something went wrong, so the question was: “What can we do now?

    • A good (smart and relatively easy) thing to do now would be to install a “Cookie Warning Pop-Up” to appear when users enter the site. This would communicate that “We are concerned” about safety

    • Make Opt-out visible

    • Harold mentioned that we need to have documentation of date each member opts in

    • Suggestion: Send “note” to all members “If you want to hear from us, Opt In” along with an easy button labelled “Opt-In” for them to hit. Harold indicated this might be possible in September

    Sponsor WOSONOS 2018

    • What does this mean?

    • Harold asked if there is energy for this - not seeing this energy communicated

    • How many people have registered? Harold thinking not many “10 or so”

    • Resolved to reach out to Kari to learn how it’s going.

    • Harold may be not going - Barry not confirmed but “working on it”

    WOSONOS in USA - Washington DC 2019

    • This is an intention to have this WOSONOS at “Home” for/with Harrison

    • We acknowledged that, if we want to do this, we have some preparation that will need to be done to to present it at WOSONOS in Iceland in October

    • And to do that, one (or more) of us OSI Board members would need to be there to present.

    • I Barry Owen have passion around this and will do some work this coming week on firming up plans to attend 2018 . . . Assuming we are a “Go!” I would propose we “mobilize the troops” here in the US to help us put together an invitation and proposal.

    Sponsoring of Agile Coach Camp and Agile SOCAL

    • Harold said there are brochures already prepared, but they may need up-dating or editing.

    • Mark offered to work on this if Harold sends it to him.

    • Howard has sent the documents to all members of the OSI board along with the open invitation for anyone to offer edits.

    Kevin’s game

    • Virtual Reality simulation of teams on a submarine executing missions to achieve objectives.

    • Attempting to help people collaborate virtually

    • Identify Leadership

    • Cultivate more personal Leadership

    Mission and Vision of OSI US

    • Not enough time or energy remaining to do this topic justice, but were some comments

    • Hold Space for Open Space

    • The possibility of truncating mission statement to Mission questions

    • What is the meaning of Open Space vs closed space?

    • The action “Opening” versus “Closing”?

    Final comments

    • Mark observed that there’s a “bottleneck” in the flow of the OSI board because so much (most) of what needs to be done relies heavily on one person - Harold

    • How do we spread this stuff out to even the load and responsibility more?

    • Suggestion surfaced to outsource some of these functions for pay

    • Mark added a card in the Bin “Sharing IT support

    Checking out

    Next meeting 8/21 @ 6 PM EST

    Barry commented an intentional new habit: To invite Open Space into everything I do

  • Meeting Date: 19 Jun 2018

    In attendance: Harold, Kevin, Karen, Mark, Tricia, Linda

    Moment, Check-ins, Bin

    1. GDPR: EU citizens, opportunity to request copy of all data, to request all data deleted, must ensure data is up to date and correct – fines can be levied.

    a. Subject to EU regulations even though not citizens of EU

    b. Compliance: Need a privacy notice on the About page

    c. Send to everyone updated privacy policy and the ability to opt out

    d. Benefit to be listed – currently have to unclick in order to not be listed

    e. Mark willing to research on privacy notice and notifications

    f. Put in same letter to members or potential OSI members

    2. WOSonOS 2018 in Iceland

    a. Don’t think we should issue invitation or letter, especially talking about Kari’s health challengesb. Don’t have ideas about who could take control of registration questions

    c. We could help with outreach and inviting directly OST influencers and thought leaders, and attendees in general – discuss options and channels: OSA, Genuine Contact, a number of individuals that each member agrees to contact.

    d. Don’t think we can assist with securing a local point of contact in Iceland for assisting with information and logistics

    e. Question about how easy it is to edit the website and how to drive traffic via this channel

    f. Can assist with organizing an additional zoom call – Harold volunteered

    g. May reach out to a group of about 18 people who showed up for a series of previous Zoom calls related to the upcoming WOSonOS – energize people to co-create an amazing event and encourage people to come.

    i. Mark has list of participants and contact information – sent to Kari

  • Meeting Date: 15 May 2018

    Attendees: Karen Davis, Kevin O’Brien, Barry Owen, Mark Sheffield, Harold Shinsato

    Next meeting: 19 June 2018

    1st order of business. The board voted unanimously to make Barry Owen an official member.

    1st discussion topic: Website hacked

    Our website was hacked about 4/18/2018, sending website visitors to a warning page saying that their computer had been broken into (a lie), and that they should call a special phone number. Daniel Mezick discovered this on 4/22/18. Harold fixed it as soon as he could that same day. Harold also changed all the passwords, and reset all user passwords, and changed our website to use https (secured version of http). The next day Harold also updated the website software to secure it from all known security issues.

    Harold has communicated with all members (from ; may have appeared as spam.

    2nd discussion topic: Identify interested and engaged users and weed out the rest. (Cultivate the list)

    Give a note to people "if we don't hear from you by this date, we'll assume you aren't interested in being a member." Keep them as contacts; flag everyone as getting this message, and when they respond.

    Action: Message: Invite members, newsletter, donations, membership list. Also mention the hack.

    Contact the member list via physical mail after 2-3 emails with no response? (approx.. 700 on list; only 100 or so members)

    Harold made new "Membership communication" card in Trello for tracking progress on this item.

    3rd discussion topic: WOSonOS 2018

    Kari Gunnarsson has asked for help in planning and promoting WOSonOS 2018. OSI-US can do promotion, fundraising, marketing to increase exposure and supplement the one invitation that has been issued.

    We can put a link on website when Kari is ready. We discussed the possibility of Facebook advertising (approx. $50). Also LinkedIn advertising & blog posts for tweeting.

    We need to get WOSonOS publicity happening before next meeting.

    The board authorized $50 for adverts (Harold). Mark will follow up with Kari.

    4th discussion topic: WOSonOS 2019 in the USA (25th WOSonOS)

    Karen is considering sites: is a possible location, close to Harrison's residence. Harrison & Suzanne are enthusiastic. The WOSonOS community tends to decide the host country. Possible alternatives to hosting a WODonOS include: regional OS. Be prepared to extend a creative invitation to host 2019 in Iceland 2018.

    5th discussion topic: Sponsoring Agile Open SoCal (Harold)

    Agile Open SoCal is September 13-14. One of the organizers (Larry Lawhead) approached Harold about sponsorship. The lowest rung of sponsorship is $500. We would have a chance to make "a short pitch" on day 1, and bring materials and SWAG. Registration begins May 29. Expected attendance is 175. Sponsorship drive ends beginning of July.

    Board approved $500 sponsorship.

    6th discussion topic: Creating a “State of Open Space” survey

    We're thinking of designing a scientifically based survey to understand the state of Open Space practice. Harold is willing to develop a one-page document to describe the idea coherently.

    The idea is prompted by the book Accelerate, which documents using statistical methods to analyze results of valid survey questions. Potentially the Institute could produce an annual "State of Open Space" survey/report.

  • Meeting Date: 16 Apr 2018

    Attendees: Barry, Mark, Karen, Harold, Kevin


    1st order of business. The board plans to make Barry an official member during the next board meeting.


    1st discussion topic: Opening Space - Leadership w/o positional authority. This topic came up originally in NYC in 2018. Barry mentioned how Harrison always prepared his own space. He would leave about 15 minutes before everybody started showing up. He wouldn’t show back up until the space was ready to be opened. When Barry asked Harrison why he did this, Harrison said it was because he didn’t want to be seen as an authority figure. For 20 years, Barry has been aware of the impact of positional authority has on the dynamics of a group


    To explore this topic further, Harold recommended a movie called the 13th warrior and a book called The Origins of the Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind. In the book, they discuss how some people had the capacity to hear the voice of spirit. Also, the Anatomy of Peace book talks about we should not look at people as objects.


    Barry mentions how in the Army, the Master Sargent is the person who knows how to get stuff done.


    Mark mentioned SAFAATMRH which equates to Stay away from acronyms as they make reading hard.


    2nd discussion topic; Harold has proposed increasing the boards contribution to qiquot chat from $7/moth to  $15/month. The board did not have unanimous consent, so this topic has been tabled until the next meeting. 


    3rd discussion topic: Harold brought up the book Exponential Organizations and it’s connection to Singularity Institute. Some discussion occurred around Otto Sharmer and his book Theory U. 


    The next board meeting will be on May 15, 2018.


  • Meeting Date: 20 Mar 2018

    In Attendance: Harold Shinsato, Karen J. Davis, Tricia Chirumbole, Mark Sheffield, Linda Stevenson

    Peace & High Performance 2018

    We cleared about 5K above expenses this year. Harold went over our income and expenses as a summary. The space was filled with 49 or 50, which was our contract limit.

    WOSonOS 2018

    We are not sure how to support WOSonOS 2018 in Iceland. Harold will ping Kari. What about future WOSonOS events? What seeds to plant? What about hosting WOSonOS 2019 in the U.S. in Dulles airport where the first WOSonOS was held. Is the Day's Inn still there? Suzanne Daigle could bring her van with stuff for D.C. It would have to be well thought out. The first WOSonOS was in '95, '94, in Dulles airport. How many years? - Michael Pannwiz video from Berlin 2010.

    We might need to think about early November instead of September/October. Karen has a Chile' event in October
    We should be careful about publicizing this before Iceland's event.

    New Board Members

    Barry Owen didn't show up today. We will consider inducting him on the board at the May meeting if he attends. If he doesn't, we might require three more consectutive months attendance. Linda is moving off the board in June. We began considering who to invite. Potential good members? We thought about attendees of the OSHotline and Peace and High Performance events. Who are some of the younger people? Andreas? Gopinah? Jose? Tom? Gopinah spent his first 17 years in India. And then came back. He is 26 now. Gopinah chose him as mentor at the last ODNetwork. Karen will explore the possibility.

    Bin Gardening

    Harold removed Daniel Mezick and Chuni Li from the Trello 'Bin'. Wondering about Lisa Heft.

    Next Meeting - Tuesday April 17, 6-7:30pm EDT (official Tax Day)

  • Meeting Date: 27 Feb 2018

    OSI Board Meeting 2-27-18

    Moment of Silence


    Participants: Mark Sheffield, Linda Stevens, Harold Shinsato, Kevin O'Brien, Tricia Chirumbole
    Guests: Barry Owen


    1. Discussion on policy of a preliminary period of 3 meetings for prospective new board member. In relation to Barry and others.

    a. Divided thoughts. Mark appreciated it for his recent onboarding. Barry weighs in on keeping it. Harold does not want to change policy so soon. Others discuss caveats or exceptions at the discretion of Board.
    b. Decide to keep the policy intact and to count Barry’s participation in Peace & High Performance as his first meeting.

    2. Board elections

    a. Harold nominated all standing members, all seconded and approved.
    b. Kevin elected President
    c. Mark voted Vice President
    d. Karen elected Secretary
    e. Harold elected Treasurer

    3. WOSonOS 2018 – Iceland

    a. Mark helped with an online open space around planning – Kari, Iceland organizer, appreciated.
    b. Themes discussed: “Crossing the Chasm: from early adopter to early majority”; a lot around the issue of what is needed to go to the next level.
    c. Concept of “siblings” of open space came up – parallels and could be in relation
    d. Kari has not made any overt requests about support, outside of not being charged for Peace & High Performance.

    4. Open Space, Peace & High Performance 2017 – Final Report\

    a. Surplus of ~$5000 – best yet. Total ~$21k in OSI funds. Need to find ways to invest funds.
    b. Discuss about listing contact information in the book of proceedings. Determine to include only the name.
    c. Include a checked check box with the online registration form next year inviting people to be members of the OSI for one year -  can be listed and have personal website and be mapped.
    d. Create a member benefit list and what does it mean toss sheet for next year

    5. Open Space in Agile

    a. Agile Open Northwest – OSI sponsored, visible on website, acknowledged at opening
    b. FAST Agile – Open Space done every few days, 10 min, let team self organize

    6. Harold’s video work

    a. Took many videos at Agile Open Northwest
    b. What’s so great about open stpace technology – 2 min or less, can share a personal website in comments field
    c. YouTube automated transcription of audio works really well.
    d. Interviews should be about 20 min: no specific prompts; open space journey, what’s exciting about open space to them, their on story, where do they think it can be used.
    e. Can invite people via the OSHotline and use the Open Space Institute's Zoom conference and do remotely.

    7. Tax filing for board
    8. Icharus
    9. Eric Reis long term stock exchange
  • Meeting Date: 21 Jan 2018

    Figures from International House: overall 58 people were involved and half of the people had been there at some point in the past


    Financial side

    Roughly half recieve some sort of discount on the admissions fee. The institute fully cover the fee for some individuals.

    With the number of paying attenddess, the institute will have nice surplus again


    At International House, they didn’t have our breakfast available on Saturday morning. We received apologies and embarrassment from them 


    The costs at IHouse is staying the same which will enable us to go there again next year.


    In the feedback Karen received, one of the participants said they never going to miss another OS ant IH.


    The money side and discounts

    With Kuri who is from Iceland

    A full gratis no charge for the registration


    We might provide some direct money to Iceland to the board


    Jane Lewis from Taiwan was the first one to register for WOSONOS

    At least one person who is willing to be on the board. That is Barry Owen.


    Barry is interested in setting up an open space center in Nashville


    Everything you don’t want to know about OST.


    We already know everything we need to know. And house a usual gathering would occur 


    Kari was very interested in hearing about Daniel Mezick 

    Open Space Online program


    The board might want to help Daniel promote his online program.


    Harold feels that WOSONOS 2018 is going to be pivotal for OS


    Daniel asked the question about who we should not invite to try and simulate a discussion around having a diverse group.

    Younger business folks. 


    Amy Chen from China is a student in NYC. Jose is thinking of opening an OS in Manhattan. He was very clear about money not being an issue. Wants to make it totally accessible. Pay what you want. 


    Remote talks we gained some lessons. Test the record button well before. Make sure to hit the right one. Or make a commitment to edit out some of the dead space at the beginning. 


    Have Harrison on a robot that could drive around the event. Kevin found one for $2000 but there might be cheaper ones as well. 


    Some of the practice facilitators did not seem to respect the law of two feet when they were inviting folks to do certain activites in the circle.


    Next year extend a similar invitation to whoever is hosting the WOSONOS


    We did add the Facebook connection to the Book of Proceedings


    Promote the open space like Suzanne Daigle


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