The Drupal Association’s mission is to unite the global open source community to help them build and promote Drupal. One of the most important ways that we advance our mission is through DrupalCon, Drupal’s flagship event.

At DrupalCon, community members with a technical, business, and marketing background come together to unite as a community, level up their Drupal skills, and contribute to the project. As a global event, DrupalCon breaks down walls between countries and the various personas who build, use and support Drupal, making it an accelerator of knowledge sharing, relationship building and contribution.

DrupalCon is ready to grow.  We need a model that allows the community to deliver DrupalCon globally. Our vision is to empower all regions to host DrupalCon, providing this experience to communities around the world.  As a first step, we are licensing DrupalCon to the European region.

We are excited to empower a new entity grounded in the European Drupal community to take this special event to the next level. The DrupalCon license initiative is an opportunity to re-imagine DrupalCon Europe to uniquely serve the Drupal community. The license is designed to allow for a new creative direction while enhancing Drupal’s mission, vision and values while maintaining the integrity of DrupalCon.

With the help of the DrupalCon Europe License Committee, we created a process for entities to apply for a DrupalCon Europe license by 30 March, 2018. We reviewed approaches used by other conference organizers, with particular attention to the key attributes that allow TED to scale its TEDx events. Then, we applied those learnings to our licensing process.

In short, we learned that TEDx scales because of clear “rules and tools” for the licensee (aka event organizer) and we aimed to provide the same level of guidance and support for the DrupalCon licensee. There are clear guidelines in the license agreement and the event rules and we will provide support in the form of knowledge transfer, tools, and advisory services. We also recognize that this is our first time creating such a program, so we encourage entities who are applying to contact us to discuss any areas of concern or question.

Below details how to submit a proposal for the DrupalCon license and the criteria that the Drupal Association will use to select the licensee.

We are grateful for the help of Bert Boerland, Baddy Breidert, Alex Burrows, Gabor Hojtsy, Janne Kalliola, Zsofi Major, and Stella Powers, who participated in the DrupalCon Europe License committee and contributed many hours and great insight into this process.

Table of Contents

  • Key Points
  • Who Can Apply For a DrupalCon License
  • Important Dates
  • What To Submit To Apply for a DrupalCon License
  • DrupalCon License Rules
  • Drupal Association Support
  • Decision Making Criteria

Key Points

Who Can Apply For a DrupalCon License

To be eligible to apply for a DrupalCon license, you must meet the following criteria:

  • An entity grounded in the voice and needs of the Drupal community. This can include, but is not limited to:

    • A professional event company

    • A Drupal community group

    • A collective of Drupal businesses

    • A Drupal business

    • An event organizing company that demonstrates how they will work with the Drupal community

    • An entity where someone on the team has event experience

  • Able to accept funds as a business or nonprofit

  • Must have successfully produced an event that broke even or was profitable. Or, the team member with event experience has worked on an event that broke even or was profitable.

  • Must agree to abide by and enforce DrupalCon’s policies and rules.

Important Dates

Above is a timeline of important dates to know. The call for a DrupalCon license proposal is now open and it closes on 30 March, 2018. In mid to late April, applicants will be interviewed and a licensee will be selected by the Drupal Association in May 2018.

As early as July 2018, The Drupal Association will provide an onboarding workshop to the licensee, to begin knowledge sharing, and map out how best to support the event organizer leading up to and during DrupalCon.

What To Submit To Apply for a DrupalCon License

To apply for the DrupalCon license, please submit the following items by 30 March, 2018 to DrupalConEurope@association.drupal.org. Your application must include the items listed below in the following formats (presentation, spreadsheet, document).

  1. DrupalCon Business Plan. Submit a business plan with the following information:

    • Event location and dates.

    • Detailed event budget, structured as similarly as possible to the current DrupalCon budget format.

    • Budget assumptions. Clearly define the budget assumptions for expenses. Also, include forecasted ticket and sponsor revenue. Define your ticket pricing plan and your sponsor strategy (who you will sell to and how you will create value for sponsors). Additionally, explain how you will secure the cash flow for initial event investments like securing the venue.

    • Details about your event team. Who are the key people on your team, what roles will they play, and what is their event experience?

    • An overview of how you will ensure the event reflects the Drupal community's needs and culture and moves the project forward.

    • The event’s mission and vision, which should align with the Drupal Association’s mission and vision.

    • Target audience and target size. Which personas will your event attract and generally in what ratio? Please define your personas.

    • Event goals, strategies and objectives

    • What value will you bring to each persona and how?

    • Programming concept overview (which we know can change as you get further into planning). Please be sure to adhere to the programming rules.

      • Event duration

      • Provide a sample program and suggested tracks

      • Share your general concept for session selection

      • What is your plan to ensure conference diversity (attendees and speakers)

      • Tell us about some aspirational keynotes you would like to invite

  2. Drupal culture. Tell us how you define Drupal’s community spirit and culture and what it means to you.

  3. What’s your “why”. Tell us why you want to organize DrupalCon. Why should you be selected, and how will you maintain the Drupal community spirit.

  4. Your needs. As seen on page 4, the Drupal Association will support you with knowledge sharing, tools, and advisory services. What additional needs do you have?

  5. About your past events. Submit an overview of your past event that you, your event partner, or your team member worked on. Describe the event audience, audience size, goals, and how you achieved those goals along with the event’s financial statements.

The Drupal Association will select the organizer who can demonstrate the best approach for creating value to a technical and non technical audience by uniting the community, leveling up Drupal skill, and accelerating the project through a sustainable model.

DrupalCon License Rules

The DrupalCon license is designed to encourage creativity, to re-imagine the event. That means you can decide what is the best programming to meet the attendee’s needs. Or you can decide that sustainability is best achieved by starting with a smaller event that grows over time. However, all proposals and the actual event must conform to the DrupalCon licensing rules and agreement to maintain the Drupal Association’s community and governance expectations, as well as DrupalCon’s brand experience.

You can find DrupalCon Rules here.  

You can find the DrupalCon license agreement here.

Since this is the first time the Drupal Association has crafted DrupalCon license rules, we are open to discussion. Please contact us if you feel a rule is a blocker to you submitting a proposal. If discussions result in a rule change, we will update the rules document to reflect that change.

Drupal Association Support

The Drupal Association wants to make sure the chosen event organizer is set up for success. We recognize this means that we will play a role leading up to and perhaps during the event. Here are some ways the Drupal Association will help. We are open to hearing about additional ways in which we might help.

  • In-person workshop: The Drupal Association staff will fly to the organizer’s location to run a workshop where we will do a knowledge transfer, training, and determine how the Drupal Association will play a support role during the event production phase.

  • Playbooks, Guidelines, and Templates. The Drupal Association has several production playbooks that we will share so the organizer can see how the event was produced in the past. We recognize that the event organizer may want to alter our approach or create a brand new one.

  • Advisory Services. You may have questions along the way and we are here to help. No question will be too big or too small. We can set up periodic check in meetings to provide guidance as you develop your event.

  • Access to tools. DrupalCon promotion and management relies on several tools that we will share with the event organizer including the DrupalCon event site, social media handles, access to DrupalCon email lists, etc.

  • Promotion Support

    • The Drupal Association can amplify your call for ticket sales, sponsorship, and content through our channels including social media, email, newsletters.

Decision Making Criteria

When reviewing and comparing proposals, The Drupal Association will select the event organizer by using the following criteria:

Category

Topic

Weight

Sustainability

Conservative, realistic, complete budget plan with clear revenue and expense budget assumptions

10

Staffing plan

Clearly defined leadership team description and a staffing plan for producing the event that is designed to avoid burnout

8

Goals, strategies, objectives

Clearly articulated goals, strategies, and objectives that move the project forward, serve multiple personas, and has achievable metrics.

9

Location

Easy to reach by European community

8

Event Dates

Avoids major holidays (national, religious, etc) and aligns with Dries Buytaert’s availability

10

Target Audience

Program serves multiple personas

8

Programming

Creative approach for serving all persona  while meeting the licensing rules.

9

Session Selection

Well thought out approach that adheres to the DrupalCon licensing rules.

7

Diversity & Inclusion

Well thought out approach for growing speaker and attendee diversity to exceed the DrupalCon Vienna benchmark

8

Definition of spirit/ culture

Strong understanding of the Drupal culture

7

Keynote examples

Creative, inspiring keynote ideas that speak to all personas

6

Event Planning Experience

Clear demonstration of event experience on the team

7

Comments

lpalgarvio’s picture

Thank you!!

Luís Pedro Algarvio
Drupal, Linux and DevOps Developer and Architect, Evangelist & Trainer
lp.algarvio.org