Over 70 participants from all over the world joined the first UnConference Blockchain Europe on April 27-28, 2021. There was no program, just a rough agenda, because an UnConference is an agile event format. The participants decide on the agenda. Anyone can contribute, at any point and any time. Seven focus sessions were offered, with two days of work on specific issues.
“Think you’ve seen every online conference there is? Think again. Blockchain Europe organized a fantastic “un-” conference with lots of collaborative workshops. This is as close to a good old conference as you remember,” proclaimed one attendee on social media. Collaborative formats included discussions, workshops, innovative tools, quiz elements, and a get-together where attendees decided who they wanted to talk to. Among other things, the event package with specialties from North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany and Europe ensured a shared experience and sufficient energy in the discussions.
The idea behind the UnConference was a joint start into the Blockchain era, because Blockchain Europe wants to further develop Blockchain technology and its application areas together with the community. The focus is on open source software, hardware and business models. The sessions focused on dangerous goods, customs and Brexit, Supply Chain Management, maintenance with the digital lifecycle record, the development of blockchain-based components and blockchain-based business models. The offer was rounded off with an entirely new ideation workshop with new methods for structuring and developing innovation.
There are no classic lectures at an UnConference. The focus is on results-oriented implementation. The results were diverse and forward-looking. For example, a new blockchain and customs working group was formed, which will now meet regularly. A layer structure for the digital lifecycle record using Blockchain was designed and will soon be published as a scientific paper. A new dangerous goods device called “Dragon” was conceived and directly found a practical partner who wants to test the device in company processes, and new strategies in the development of Blockchain-based business models were presented.
“Be prepared to be surprised,” declared Maximilian Austerjost, Blockchain Europe project manager, when presenting the four essential rules of an UnConference. Surprised indeed were all participants and the organizers. After two successful days, however, it is clear that agile working can also work in times of Corona and digital.