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Exclusive: Sandeep Goyal writes from Jaipur on WPP Stream India 2014

14-February-2014
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Exclusive: Sandeep Goyal writes from Jaipur on WPP Stream India 2014

I almost passed up CVL Srinivas’ invite to Stream. But I am glad better sense prevailed.

Here I am in Jaipur, at the WPP Stream India 2014: an ‘unconference’ like never before. Frankly, the concept of an ‘unconference’ intrigued me. In 30 years of being in the business, I had never heard of something like this.

‘Unconference’ is simply (or not really as simply!) an unstructured conference that allows the free-flow of ideas without the constraint of plenary sessions, keynote speakers, pre-planned break-out workshops. It is a conference without a strict agenda (‘unagenda’, really). The participating delegates actually decide the flow and format of what is discussed, what is debated, and what is discarded.

There are nearly 300 delegates here representing a broad spectrum of digital domains. From native mobile ads to disruption on the personal smart screen; from 3D printing to Big Data; from Communities to Dashaavtaars... the Big Boards at the venue offer nearly 80 slots for those with ideas to discuss, and disseminate. You put up your idea, block a slot and then hope there are enough takers for what you have on offer. I am lovin’ it. What a vibrant democracy of ideas competing for attention!

The ‘unconference’ at Stream also has other interesting stuff – there is a Stream Band, a Gadgetathon, a Tech Lab, a Midnight Cook-out and late night film screenings – enough to keep everyone immersed, involved and engaged.

My friend, Arzan Khambatta, the famous sculptor, conducted a well-attended workshop on 2D versus 3D thinking. Shekhar Kapur has been waxing eloquent on films, communication, and un-thinking.

With so much to choose from, and so much to do, I am already in un-sleep mode!

The author is Co-founder and Vice Chairman of Mogae Group.

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