Snap Shot of #cong19 and Details of #cong20

Now that the dust has settled on CongRegation its time to reflect on the number and diversity of events that took place as part of the 3 day event.  I also wanted to announce the theme and dates for #cong20 (Spoiler‘Society 3.0’ Nov 20-22nd details at the bottom).

The theme for the 7th CongRegation Nov 22-24th was ‘Community’ and we expanded the number of events and increased the number of attendees.

In summary:

  • 3 Days Nov 22-24th
  • 9 Separate events
  • 38 Attendees at Ashford Castle Evening with 5 guest speakers
  • 90 Attendees at Unconference
  • 32 Huddles
  • 27 Children at 3 workshops
  • 25 people on the Mindfulness Walk in Cong Woods
  • 72 Submissions uploaded to the website

Profile of Attendee

The profile and backgrounds of CongRegation attendees reflects the diversity of people attracted ranging from youngest 16 to oldest at 83 tears old.  60% were male and 40% female.  Two speakers flew in London.  Background were equally varied from Gardai, Academia, Business (multinationals to SMEs), Public and Private Sector, Social Entrepreneurship, Coaching to Retired.  This year we had one attendee virtually attend the huddles through zoom.

Social Media

Across Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook there was in excess of 450 uses of the #cong19.  In addition there were over 30 online videos and podcasts and over 300 photos of the event posted across multiple platforms.  This is a manual calculation so the real number is probably a good bit higher.  Mental note to set the alert/recording earlier.


The event was publicised through Think Business, Irish Tech News, local media and at various events in the run up.  This was supported by five large road signs and 30 A4 posters.


In order to increase the interaction between attendees and children a series of workshops and extra events were organised including:

  • Maker Meeting Friday Evening
  • Children’s Workshops – Maker Meet/STEM, Drama and Clay Modelling
  • Poetry Open Mike
  • Tin Whistle
  • Music Demo by Hyphurm
  • Mindfulness Cong Woods
  • Exploration of sound by Curly Organ
  • Online creative problem solving muse Thypia

Food and Drink

Breakfast, tea/coffee during the day, lunch and post event canapés were supplied as part of the free ticket entry with a special tapas evening also organised.

Economic Impact

Accounting for the money spent on accommodation, food and drink and related services is in excess of €20,000.


In addition to event photography attendees were also offered the opportunity to get free portrait photos taken in a professional mobile photo studio which were supplied digitally following the event.

Submissions and Impact

All the submissions were uploaded to the CongRegation website supported by designed imagery.  In addition attendees submitted a post event reflection which was analysed by a semantic robot to measure the impact of the event on the attendee perception of the theme ‘Community’.  The results are fascinating and are available here.  Event feedback forms were also filled out.

The longest submission this year was 3,700 words long.  There were 20,848 reads of the submissions.  Average number of reads was 300.  Top was Joy Redmonds at 1,274. 481 likes on Facebook of the submissions with top liked was Aisling Irvine’s with 87 Facebook likes.

The top ten reads were

  1. Joy Redmond- Community Rotten Apples and Hidden Gems: 1274 reads
  2. Bob Kennedy – Communities of Excellence: 810 reads
  3. Ailish Irvine – You are not the boss of my community: 774 reads
  4. Mick Hogan- Nature & Community: 570 reads
  5. Sean McGrath- Community – a Disability Perspective: 553 reads
  6. Sabine Mckenna- Scratch – An Online Community Experience: 542 reads
  7. Derval Dunford- Community Soup: 486 reads
  8. Samantha Kelly- How to Build an Engaged Community Online: 455 reads
  9. Aine McManamon- Community – The Sense of Belonging: 445 reads


All the photography and video has now been added to the website so previous talks and photos from each of the 7 years can now be viewed.

Plans for 2020

The selected theme for 2020 is ‘Society 3.0’ with full details of theme available on the website. This is a wide reaching and challenging topic and we are planning a similar number of events with some tweaks on the final session to gather the insights in one session.

We are now calling for outline topics, challenging each attendee to take their own insights, opinions, experience, research, aspiration and translate them in to a title and quick synopsis.  Full submissions due in summer.

Get your pencils sharpened, read the briefing and come back with your topic title and summary to me as soon as you can.

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