The Best Conferences For The Rest of 2011

July 27, 2011

in Conference

Icon by Benedikte Vanderweeën

Five months and a few days left to the end of 2011 and still so many interesting conferences to attend to. While you can’t (shouldn’t?) attend too many of them and stay productive at your work (unless you’re pitching to conference attendees/speakers, looking for new clients, or -like me- work in the conference biz), a good conference exposes you to new ideas, useful networking and the occasional magic of serendipity.

Follows a selection of the events that I find more interesting (or I’m curious to discover) before the end of 2011. Another extraordinary way  to discover conferences is through services like Plancast or Lanyrd.

Do you have a conference to recommend? Please do it in the comments below!

Note: I compile a Conference Calendar on Google Calendar here (you can subscribe to if from your own calendar) and also a list of interesting conferences here (the Google Calendar is more up to date though).


23/8-26/8 Adaptive Path’s UX week [San Francisco, USA]

Best for interaction designers and design professionals worldwide. Impressive lineup of speakers and many workshops to get your hands dirty with.

24/8-25/8 Media Evolution Conference [Malmö, Sweden] <- I’ll be attending, let’s meet!

Excellent place to meet key the media players from the nordic countries. It  explores the future of media and attracts people from film, games, web, publishing, learning, tech and music.

29/8-5/9 Burning Man [Nevada Desert, USA]

Some say it’s become too commercial now, but still it’s on my event bucket-list. “Once a year, tens of thousands of participants gather in Nevada’s Black Rock Desert to create Black Rock City, dedicated to community, art, self-expression, and self-reliance. They depart one week later, having left no trace whatsoever.”


2/9 dConstruct [Brighton, UK]

Home for designers, makers and tinkers. The conference is sold-out but you can still register for the workshops (and it gives you access to the conference). “dConstruct 2011 brings together leading thinkers from the fields of interaction design, mobile design and ubiquitous computing to explore how we can bridge the gap between physical and digital product design.”

12/9-14/9 TechCrunch Disrupt SF [San Francisco, USA]

Run by TechCrunch, this is a place to go and meet new startups (or pitch your own), VCs and other players from the Web world.

14/9-16/9 PICNIC Festival [Amsterdam, The Netherlands] <- I’ll be attending, let’s meet!

PICNIC is a wonderful place to discover innovative ideas and business opportunities in the future of media, design, technology and the people that are making it happen (disclaimer: I used to work at PICNIC as Marketing Manager). This year’s edition is focusing on Urban Futures (infrastructure, sustainability, society, design, media).

15/9-18/9 The Do Lectures [Cilgerran (West Wales), UK]

This is another one in my event bucket-list. “The Do Lectures are all about getting a handful of speakers together in one place, in the hope that they may inspire you to go Do something. To give you the tools and the desire to change the things you care about.” 

30/9 TEDxTransmedia [Rome, Italy]

I attended the first TEDxTransmedia in Geneva last year and it was a first-class tour through the realm of Transmedia and Story-telling. Looking forward to the speaker lineup.


13/10-14/10 Wired (UK) Conference [London, UK] <- I’ll be attending, let’s meet!

This will be the first conference organized by the guys of Wired Magazine’s UK edition. I suspect it’s going to offer a good mix of business-oriented sessions and more forward-thinking geeky-futurist ones (and I’m personally looking forward to the latter). In the preliminary speaker list they include two that I particularly like: Bjarke Ingels and Heather Knight.

19/10-22/10 PopTech [Camden (Maine), USA]

This one too is in my event bucket list. A valid alternative to TED. “PopTech is a unique innovation network – a global community of cutting-edge leaders, thinkers, and doers from many different disciplines, who come together to explore the social impact of new technologies, the forces of change shaping our future, and new approaches to solving the world’s most significant challenges.”


9/11/-11/11 Monaco Media Forum [Monaco, Montecarlo]

What’s attractive of the MMF is the audience. Come here (invitation only) for high-level networking and an Oscar-like setup. Besides, it;s always nice to visit Monaco for a few days… you might even find a single prince/princess to marry!

25/11 TEDxAmsterdam [Amsterdam, The Netherlands] <- I might be attending, let’s meet!

Been there since the first edition back in 2009 and it felt like a big brother TED event condensed into one day (3 speakers from that edition made it to the TED stage one year after]. While the 2010 was a bit too much Dutch-focused for my wants, it still provided quite some inspiring ideas worth doing…


7/12/-9/12 Le Web [Paris, France] <- I might be attending, let’s meet!

Le Web has turned into a huge people-meeting-machine. Last year more than 3,000 attendees came to Paris and on a personal level it was a great networking opportunity. If you follow what’s going on in the web world, especially the Silicon Valley/Alley turf, then the program won’t seem that interesting but it’s a great platform for doing business.

  • Irina Kremin

    I would like to add: Enterprise Marketing 2.0 ( ) – October 12-13 Amsterdam.

    • Gianfranco Chicco

      Thanks Irina! Just added it to the google calendar

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