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Netroots Nation 2012
As chairman of the board of directors of Netroots Nation, I'm excited. Because this is the part of the process I enjoy most (other than the conference itself): watching your proposals come in to create our conference agenda, manifesting itself ultimately into a massive grid of awesomeness that provides our attendees with an overstuffed buffet of options reflecting what the Netroots cares about each year.

If you'd like to help us set that agenda, your proposals for panel discussions, roundtables, training sessions and the like are due Friday, Jan. 31.

What we're doing this year in Providence this June 7-10 (register now!—rates will only rise), as we do every year, is build our schedule from the grassroots up. Your proposals define what it means to be in the Netroots—what issues we care about, what perspectives we believe are worth hearing—making the conference itself a way to educate ourselves, informing and inspiring activism for the year that follows, as well as broadcasting our priorities to the political community at large.

We need your ideas. As we look at the successes of the Occupy movement and ahead to November's elections, where do we go from here? We want to see proposals for panels that run the gamut of progressive policy, but we especially want to see proposals that cover:

  • Building long-term capacity within the progressive movement.
  • The 2012 election, retaining the White House and regaining the House with a mandate to move the country in a more progressive direction.
  • Pushing the practice of online and offline organizing forward, particularly in underrepresented communities.
  • Thinking big and moving the Overton window on policies.
  • Challenging power.
Each session should offer a Netroots hook and cover interesting topics from new perspectives—though, of course, some of that can involve bringing in non-Netroots folks to educate us and listen to us.

In addition, for the first time, we're inviting your suggestions for individual speakers who we should add to the agenda.

We want forward-looking ideas that provide attendees with tools to make change and ideas to build upon. Feel free to browse our archive of previous sessions and check out our video archive to see what has been done in years past, but don't be afraid to think outside the box with regards to topic or format.  

When you're brainstorming, here are a few things to think about:

  • How does my idea help the broader progressive movement?
  • How will it empower activists to take what they've learned and use it for the greater good?
  • Do my proposed panelists represent diversity—of ethnicity, gender, geography, age and viewpoint?
  • Does my proposed panel help activists break out of existing silos and help unify the progressive movement?

Click here to read the full list of guidelines and submit your idea. (We take these guidelines seriously—there are numerical grades, spreadsheets, conference calls, the works.) As you'll see from the guidelines, your ideas need not be fully formed at this stage, but we will want to see a good level of thoughtfulness and planning. (You can't just give us a title and say "and I'll find three awesome people to talk about it—maybe Russ Feingold can come." Be as specific as reasonably possible.)

The deadline for submission is Monday, Jan. 31.  Feel free to email me at adam (at) netrootsnation dot org if you have any questions about this process, or just ask them here. Help us build a great conference on a weekend in New England.

Originally posted to Adam B on Mon Jan 09, 2012 at 12:18 PM PST.

Also republished by NetrootsNation, ClassWarfare Newsletter: WallStreet VS Working Class Global Occupy movement, Invisible People, Barriers and Bridges, and Daily Kos.

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