For us, having a diverse group of attendees is about hosting a better event. When people bring together a true variety of backgrounds and experiences, they also bring a variety of ways to frame issues, find opportunities and identify solutions. Our mix of Campers was once perfectly described as “Everyone I never knew I always wanted to meet.”
Before we decide on our individual invitees, we create what we call an “attendee matrix,” which describes our desired composition of the group, their industries, experience levels and backgrounds.
More than fifty percent of the attendees at every Spark Camp we’ve hosted have been women. Roughly a third are people of color. Campers have been associated with a vast range of institutions and companies, while some are individual achievers. We also work to include that smart people from outside of the U.S., to ensure a wide array of worldviews and perspectives.
Below is our camper matrix from Spark Camp Design, which was held in partnership with the d.school at Stanford University January 2013.