— Tannis Morgan (@tanbob) June 14, 2016
At today’s opening session for the 2016 Cohort of UDG Agora, four participants from 2015 were invited back to provide insight into their experience via one of the Liberating Structures formats known as the User Experience Fishbowl.
Today we welcomed back Adán, Araceli, Moises and Francisco, who were placed in the center of the room, the “fishbowl”. Their role was to have a discussion among themselves, with the rest of the audience observing. At key points, the observers then gathered in their small groups to share with each other what they heard as key learnings.
The description of this Liberating Structure is:
What is made possible? A subset of people with direct field experience can quickly foster understanding, spark creativity, and facilitate adoption of new practices among members of a larger community. Fishbowl sessions have a small inside circle of people surrounded by a larger outside circle of participants. The inside group is formed with people who made concrete progress on a challenge of interest to those in the outside circle. The fishbowl design makes it easy for people in the inside circle to illuminate what they have done by sharing experiences while in conversation with each other. The informality breaks down the barriers with direct communication between the two groups of people and facilitates questions and answers flowing back and forth. This creates the best conditions for people to learn from each other by discovering answers to their concerns themselves within the context of their working groups. You can stop imposing someone else’s practices!
Ask those in the fishbowl to describe their experience—the good, the bad, and the ugly—informally, concretely, and openly. Invite them to do it in conversation with each other as if the audience wasn’t there and they were sharing stories around a watering hole or stuck in a van on the way to the airport. Firmly, ask them to avoid presenting to the audience.
Invite the people outside the fishbowl to listen, observe nonverbal exchanges, and formulate questions within their small groups.
We have an audio recording of the discussion (we apologize for the uneven quality of the recording, a small failure bow)