Just cross-posting this update I’ve just posted to the UKGovcamp blog:
The coming UKGovcamp is going to be awesome: by far the biggest yet, with around 200 people attending. It’s also – amazingly – the fourth national event of its kind, attracting new people as well as becoming a bit of an annual pilgrimage for old-time barcampers.
For the past three events, we’ve had kind sponsors chipping in to cover food, drink and t-shirt costs, and providing some of their swag for the barcampers. But it’s clear that this year’s event is on a scale and with a incredibly generous host, that means that we think there’s a bigger opportunity here, to harness some of the enthusiasm from commercial organisations and use it to support the Govcamping community throughout the year, and across the country.
That man Neil Williams let the cat out of bag yesterday:
The idea behind MoreOpen is frankly somewhat ill-defined, probably because Dave and I are the people behind it. But in our vagueness, we’ve got a plan that by using some of the platforms available including the January event, this online community, and the govcamp chat in social media, we can help commercial organisations large and small to get involved in supporting the community and showing us what they can offer, without turning UKGovcamp into a cheesy, sponsor-packed conference.
In return, we’re aiming to build up some cash that we can use to help self-organised local govcamps or thematic events which aim to promote public sector collaboration, participation or transparency. We’re aiming to be able to offer some seed funds to help these events get off the ground, pay for food, venues and AV stuff, as belts continue to tighten within public sector organisations.
To answer some questions: no, it’s not a for-profit enterprise (at the moment it’s nothing at all legally-speaking, so we’re collecting sponsorship monies for UKGC11 via my limited company). No, we don’t have cash to help you run events yet, but we hope to in the New Year. Yes, it does sound a bit dodge, doesn’t it – hence our plan to recruit a small independent Board of Advisors from the Govcamp community to keep an eye on it, and us. By all means leave a comment or question below and we’ll do our best to answer it.
So we’ll see where it goes. But for now, if you’re a commercial organisation doing business with the public sector and you’d like to support the Govcamp community, and perhaps have an opportunity to demo your stuff at UKGovcamp on January 22nd, please take a look at our new supporters page, and give Dave or me a call about sponsoring the event.
Help us make the awesomeness last all year long.
You can find the supporters info pack including rates below, or download it here (PDF, 1.4mb)