P2PU Gathering: What will we learn together?


2019 Gathering in Boston: Sept 18-20

Hi everyone,

We’re in the process of organizing a rock-star agenda with feedback from those who attended our P2PU Gathering last year and those who are still new to P2PU. What’s this Gathering thing, again? Here’s a summary of what happened last year in Kansas City and here’s last year’s website.

Our General Plan

  • The P2PU Gathering will be hosted on September 18, 19th and 20th in Boston with major help from Boston Public Library. Save the date! Woohoo!
  • We’re aiming for ~50 people, most of whom have facilitated circles, plus some new community members from the Boston area.
  • We have the option to do some site visits and extra introduction to learning circles working on Wednesday, September 18th as a pre-conference event.
  • We have four rooms booked at Boston Public Library, which allows for a few different formats:
    • Large group: Sharing updates, stories, outcomes, questions facilitated by P2PU
    • Smaller breakouts: Led by participants and/or P2PU
    • Unconference/open space
      • Social time
  • We won’t charge a registration fee: about 25 people are already sponsored through grants; the rest will not be expected to cover anything more than food costs.

Agenda Items

Based on our April 26 Community Call and additional feedback we’ve received, the following topics and issues seem of most interest:

P2PU Update

  • Update from P2PU on the past year and year ahead / how this work fits into the broader vision of P2PU


  • Learn more about what is and what is not working from other learning circle facilitators, groups and libraries
  • Workshopping failures


  • Discussion on financial support for learning circles and similar programs at libraries with representatives from IMLS and other funders
  • Running learning circles with support from community partners (employment services, housing, language learning centers)
  • MOOC provider relationships / working with expertise groups like Nanowrimo and LPI

Learning circle features, testing, and trouble shooting

  • User testing on new P2PU initiatives and tools (community roles page, online course, tech features, learning activities)
  • Discussing and troubleshooting the technology that we use alongside learning circles (Lynda, Northstar, edX, etc.)
  • Discussing what is and is not working with feedback/surveys and how we can better evaluate and document impact in a way that is consistent with our values

Specific activities

  • OER course development activity
  • Intensive facilitation theory and practice workshop
  • Intro to running your own learning circle training using the new learning circle course


  • Meeting specifically for team organizers

Neat ideas!

  • Skype in with learning circle folks from Kenya and EU

Social activities

  • Tour of Boston Public Library
  • Site visits (Cambridge Public Library, BPL branches, MIT Media Lab, etc.)
  • Large group dinner
  • Some sort of social event (bowling, brewery visit, adult playground, etc.)
We aim to create a brief agenda and registration page with additional details by mid-May.

Anything else of interest to you? Reply below!

P2PU Gathering: Registration is now OPEN!

Thanks for your feedback @Alexis_Burns @Marsha @David_Rosen @aoliveras @Larysa_Isoki @jsherwood @SaraDixon @Athanasia_Fitos @grif @Gwendolyn_Haley