In the ten days immediately after the event, everyone we spoke with was very focused on the details (lines were too long, Slow Food Nation should have managed the volunteer program directly, etc), but with the distance of a few weeks, some broader ideas have been emerging. This is where things get interesting for me. What are the conditions for success for an event building on Slow Food Nation? What are the fundamental elements of city and community that made this event possible? Based on these broader questions, here’s what we think is fundamental for future editions: a strong and positive relationship with the city government; highly visible, accessible and symbolic event locations; a relationship with an interested and engaged design community; strong spokespeople; a cohesive and collaborative team; the ability to make most of the event free of charge; and willingness from members of the local food community to take on leadership roles in the event planning. In retrospect, these were the broad underpinnings of success for Slow Food Nation, and are concepts that need to be seriously considered in identifying a location and community for future events.
So, we continue to interview, download, listen, and learn as we understand the role of the inaugural edition. Through this, we’ll accomplish something more important: gather the knowledge necessary to understand what could be the most powerful and transformative next steps for Slow Food Nation.
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