[OSGeo-Conf] Comments on Ottawa FOSS4G 2017 letter

Jeff McKenna jmckenna at gatewaygeomatics.com
Thu Aug 13 11:27:19 PDT 2015

Thank you for your Letter of Interest for Ottawa, Canada.  Here are
some comments from me, to consider if you proceed to the next stage:

- although some past FOSS4G bids have proposed a shared conference chair 
role between 2 individuals, the reality is that one single face is 
needed for the role of chair of the event (here you are proposing 2). My 
experience is that more than one will not work, that you must have one 
single goto for external visibility.  I have noticed that 2 chairs for 
FOSS4G cause also internal confusion (who in the end must make the hard 
decisions), and for that reason I have noticed that all FOSS4G events 
eventually officially begin with one single chair.  This is not a rule, 
but it is a strong recommendation, that you may consider.

- having someone on your committee who was the chair of the 1st ever 
Open Source geo conference in North America, way back in 2004, is a 
strong plus.  You could definitely highlight that in your full proposal.

- great to see you already planning the location of the workshops.  One 
of the special parts of a FOSS4G is the hands-on workshops, and having a 
strong plan outlined for workshops will help your bid.  Also note that 
workshops at FOSS4G usually run for 2 days (you have mentioned "separate 
day" here in the letter).  You could also explain in your full proposal 
how this is related to costs (hosting workshops onsite vs offsite at 
university campus).

- I am noticing that more FOSS4G committees are working closely with 
their local tourism board, and it is great to see that you mention this. 
  Committees like Seoul and Bonn are really setting this standard, and, 
to be honest, this really makes sense, as FOSS4G brings so much into the 
local economy.  You could elaborate more on this in your full proposal.

- Wonderful to see you highlight the importance of the OSGeo Ottawa 
local chapter and its long history.  The local community is so important 
for a FOSS4G.

I hope these brief comments help you with your bid.


Jeff McKenna
President, OSGeo

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