Developed by two American management consultants, the World Café method is now one of the most popular and commonly used methods for facilitating large groups of up to 2,000 participants.
What is the World Café method?
The principle behind the World Café is to encourage discussion between participants seated at different coffee tables with a view to converting a wide pool of knowledge into usable and concentrated results in the shortest possible time. At these events, 4 to 6 people sit together at a table and discuss issues relevant to the participants for around 15 to 30 minutes.
Repeating the same questions at different coffee tables and swapping participants helps to generate ideas and open up new perspectives. The "host", who remains at each table, records the ideas on a paper tablecloth.
The information from the tablecloths is then presented to everyone and recorded as written results during a subsequent discussion.
Are you planning a World Café at the Liederhalle?
- Allow sufficient space between tables for freedom of movement and good acoustics.
- Prepare thoroughly, considering different perspectives from the organisation or company, and meaningful questions that can be developed for discussion at the World Café.
- Ensure a heterogeneous mixture of participants.