POINT, the 5th Time.

I can’t call POINT a “conference”, because it is a combination of experiences that stimulate very many senses of each and every participant.TransparenCEE is a project designed to make collaboration easier: it goes beyond the projects and tasks, it is about atmosphere and communications. Let me then share what I learned about that from the last 5 editions of POINT.

Full disclosure: I’m completely biased towards POINT and its organizers, as the first one in 2012 trully changed my life, and the people behind the conference became something like my family.

The Program

Political accountability and new technologies (in Bosnian: Politička Odgovornost i Nove Tehnologije = POINT) is a wide theme. It covers all sorts of public life’s angles and dimensions, for this reason the program of each event is packed with topics and perspectives. This year was no different, but that is not all. For the 3 (or like in mine and some cases 5) days you have smart, pro-active people from around the world within a hand’s reach. In the atmosphere of “sure, let’s try” or “let me just open my laptop”,  and  “you should see this”  one can witness, just like that, working solutions, best ways to visualise data and great tactics for influencing OGP agendas.

 The Community

Of course there are other events at which you can do it all too, and I participated in many. However, this is the only one not calling itself a “networking event”, yet organically being the most encouraging towards making connections, working together, giving plenty of space and opportunities for discussion. If fact if, I ever wanted to show what an open event means to somebody participating only in boring top-level conferences before, I’d take them to Sarajevo. Experiencing POINT is much better than just hearing stories about passionate discussions, great co-participants, community spirit and just pure fun.

 

by Vanja Čerimagić

by Vanja Čerimagić

 The Nightlife

This all happens not only during the day, it is also what the night program of the event offers, especially when Sarajevo itself motivates everybody to stay up long during May nights. You can dance, you can play silly games, or yet again you can discuss how to change the world. I believe half of POINT best memories are nightlife memories. So my pro-tip is never to miss it out, and just take a dispense from your brain and liver, just enjoying good (and heavy) food and other stimulants. There is a big chance you will acquire friends and collaborators for both your professional and personal life, just as it happened to me. 

The Organizers

I got a fantastic chance to work closely with everybody from Zašto Ne organizing POINT(s), and I know they are putting all their hearts (big big ones) and minds (great and very creative ones) in order to make everybody feel welcome by taking care of details and the large picture, all with their undoubtful sense of humour and irony.

by Vanja Ćerimagić

by Vanja Ćerimagić

 Sarajevo — The City

As a final remark, even if it’s not a lesson one can implement everywhere, I need to emphasise how the atmosphere of Sarajevo makes it easier for everybody to relax and take what is the best for them at the given moment, seeding connections, inspiring collaborations or just collecting happy moments.

Kudos for POINT 5.0 and see you all at POINT 6.0!