Small is Beautiful: Conferences As If People Mattered

Small is Beautiful 3687027048_e331ab1ff5Reading the October issue of The Sun the other day I came across an excerpt from E.F. Schumacher’s classic 1973 book Small Is Beautiful: Economics As If People Mattered.

When comparing Buddhist economics with modern economics, Schumacher writes “The former, in short, tries to maximize human satisfactions by the optimal pattern of consumption, while the latter tries to maximize consumption by the optimal pattern of productive effort.”

Similarly, peer conferences try to maximize satisfaction by providing just the content and format that attendees request, rather than trying to offer everything in the context of a big impersonal event.

Image attribution: http://www.flickr.com/photos/dcmaster/ / CC BY-NC 2.0

2 thoughts on “Small is Beautiful: Conferences As If People Mattered

  1. Adrian, I’ve been meaning to talk to you about this topic. Mitchell and I are still benefiting from Event Camp East Coast in terms of business, partnerships and friendships. And I know we aren’t the only ones. I’ve never experienced a conference that created so many ripples. I’m going to write a post about it on Smarter Shift and would love your input on it. Perhaps a collaboration? Let’s talk! 🙂

    1. Looking back, Jenise, Event Camp East Coast was indeed an extraordinary event for the meeting industry. As with you, a majority of the participants remain important friends and colleagues to this day. What’s especially gratifying satisfying to me is that today the Conferences That Work event format is routinely providing experiences like ECEC for groups of all kinds all over the world.

      Of course, I’d love to work with you on your post. Let’s talk!

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