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The Knowledge Caf

A knowledge cafe gathers 12 to 24 people together to have a conversation.

It typically consists of a 15-20 minute presentation on a topic of
importance to the participants followed by three rounds of
conversation in groups of three or four, no more no less, prompted
by a question.

Each round of conversation lasts 10-20 minutes.

The group size, topic focus and time limit mean conversations
flourish and monologues perish.

All the participants then sit in a circle for a whole group conversation for about 20 minutes.

The session is concluded with each person in the circle taking 1 minute
to pledge a single action that they will undertake as a result of their

Although the Knowledge Cafe can be put to a variety of purposes
depending on the topic and the question, its fundamental strength is
to bring the participants together to learn from each other; to
strengthen their relationships, make connections, glean insights and
surface ideas and opportunities and encourage new ways of thinking.

David Gurteen

David Gurteen is an international consultant, speaker and facilitator in the fields of Knowledge
Management, Organisational Learning and Organisational Conversation.

His trademark is his knowledge cafes which he has developed and run around
the world for the past 12 years.

He is the founder of the Gurteen Knowledge Community - a global network of
21,000 people in over 160 countries and his monthly Knowledge Letter is now in
its 13th year.

He maintains an extensive resource website

In June 2010, David won the Ark Groups lifetime achievement award for services to Knowledge

It sounds such a simple idea, but until you have experienced a knowledge cafe you
won't understand just how powerful they can be in connecting people, generating
new ideas and tackling issues. David in particular brings a special kind of energy to
the room that really helps, but when you stop and think about it, we are given very
little time in our working lives to engage honestly and authentically with one
another in that uniquely human activity, that fundamental building block of trust
and understanding; conversation."
James Brown
Head of Performance and Knowledge Management
Surrey County Council
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