1. Dear Jess,

    Thanks for your comment. I don’t mean to minimise the great work you’re doing on the SHINE conferences. I also don’t want to tell you how to do things. This was purely me musing on something that was announced following a chat I had with Lizzie and how I didn’t feel that it had gone the right way, considering that we had talked about inviting people to facilitate conversation around the identity of Social Enterprise in the UK. Aren’t we’re still struggling with that?

    I simply didn’t think I’d get invited to be an usher instead.

    However, since we are already talking events and money, I do have a history of having very strong views on how events are run, and, having grown tired of offering opinion on other people’s conferences, actually ran a successful, well organised, *free* localgovcamp event for 150 people two months ago, funnily enough at Kings Place, which was inspired by SHINE 09. (A report is here http://is.gd/bTFgd ) Considering how much funding is available in the social enterprise area, there is no reason to argue over money.

    Mostly my argument was not about money. It was about how we treat our supporters and people who are nice enough to want to contribute. how we make them feel special (or not). That doesn’t involve money, most of the time.


  2. Hi Anke,

    it’s good to hear your feedback and your thoughts on how we could manage volunteering for SHINE against ticket price. We’ve thought long and hard about how we do this, and have talked to lots of people about it in the three years we’ve been producing SHINE.

    Our first principle is to keep the SHINE ticket price as low as possible. And we’ve consulted social entrepreneurs quite extensively about what this price should be. This year, with broad agreement, we’ve set it at 50 quid and social entrepreneurs of all kinds are signing up for this, and seemingly happy to pay for the value they get for SHINE. It takes a lot of work, a whole year of dedication, and the generosity of our sponsors to be able to keep the ticket price this low. We know that there are lots of social entreprenurs who can add huge value to this kind of cocreated unconference event, and we want to enable as many people as possible to take part.

    On volunteering, we offer this option for people who absolutely can’t afford the ticket price and absolutely want to come to SHINE. This way, it means that we can run SHINE cost effectively, by harnessing the contribution of people who are prepared to give their time in exchange for entry to the event.

    We would love to be able to hire a team of facilitators at SHINE – however, if we were to do this, we’d have to up our ticket price. Please give us your feedback as to whether you´d prefer us to raise a ticket price, or to run the event with the contribution of volunteers who are happy to give us their time. It’s questions like these that we have to juggle all the time – we don’t think there’s an easy answer, and just to let you know that currently, SHINE is run as a not-for-profit venture with lots of blood, sweat and tears! We’d love to see you there either way.


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