Technology Affinity Group 2012 Call for Sessions

The Technology Affinity Group (http://www.tagtech.org) is holding its 2012 Annual Conference November 12 – 15, 2012 in Monterey, CA at the Monterey Plaza Hotel and Spa (http://www.montereyplazahotel.com).

The goal of the annual TAG Conference is to serve as an educational learning opportunity for TAG members by providing sessions that are relevant to the needs of the TAG membership. Many members have indicated that they have joined TAG to network and share information and ideas with their peers. This conference is one way for the affinity group to meet member needs.

What makes the conference unique is that it is the one place for technology professionals working in philanthropy to share their experiences with peers. As such, the conference sessions should be about the application of technology relevant to the specific audience niche.

TAG Conference Goals

  • Networking: Provide networking opportunities for TAG members – connecting people with others facing similar issues for information sharing;
  • Community: Build the TAG community – relationships that can be leveraged beyond the conference;
  • Education: Provide practical educational opportunities and professional development for TAG members.

Conference Sessions
The Conference Agenda Committee is planning a keynote, two plenary sessions and twelve breakout sessions. Plenary sessions are allotted 90 minutes; breakout sessions are allotted 60 minutes.

The committee welcomes sessions that are relevant, timely, engaging and valuable.

Below are some ideas the committee identified as areas of interest for potential sessions. Your session does not have to be about one of these topics but we thought the list would provide some initial guidance to you.

Consumerization – how it applies to philanthropy
‘Going paperless’/Streamling the grants management process
Mobility – devices & applications
Business continuity planning
Security

Target Audience
The TAG membership consists of a diverse set of professionals, all responsible for managing the technology function within a philanthropic organization. Although members are generally responsible for technology, they are not necessarily technologists. Members’ job functions vary from senior staff to technical managerial positions such as a chief information officer, chief operations or administrative officer, director of technology or ‘jack-of-all-trades’ manager of technology and technology-specific functions such as a database administrator, web specialist or network administrator to those whose primary skill set is not technology but whose positions are very dependent on technology such as communications professionals, financial managers, grants managers and evaluation staff.

Hands-on training for technical staff on specific technologies is not the focus of this conference. However, we hope and expect more in-depth technical information sharing will happen via peer networking. The conference purpose is to educate and connect members around the application of technology relative to the field.

Session Tracks, Format and Objective
Two tracks have been targeted for this conference: Management and Technical.

Management
Session should be designed to discuss issues around technology management, communications and collaboration. These sessions deal with broader management issues and policies related to the technology function versus the technology itself.

Technical
Session should be devoted to technologies themselves. Despite this focus, these sessions should be targeted to the technology manager/decision maker rather than the engineer responsible for installing and maintaining a particular technology.

Format
A session should be 60 minutes for a breakout session and 90 minutes for a plenary session. At least 20-30 minutes of the session should be devoted to audience participation or a key “activity” for the audience.

Objective
The session topic should be one that provides educational value for your colleagues with technology management responsibilities in the philanthropic field. The session should have broad applicability (large and small organizations, varying skill levels) and clear, specific focus. Consider what result(s) participants can expect from the session. A good session will have changed the participants’ current knowledge and/or skills in some way. Avoid focusing here on process—e.g., “to discuss best practices.” Rather, a real objective should describe a desired outcome.

TAG Conference Call for Sessions
Once you submit a suggestion for a session you will be contacted by the TAG Agenda Committee indicating whether your session has been accepted or not. Even if your session has been accepted, you may be asked by the committee to modify your session to better fit the conference.

Please submit your completed Call for Sessions Form to:
Lisa Pool
lisa @ tagtech.org
No later than Friday, April 13, 2012