Monday, Jan 09 2023

The content team has selected 22 Microsoft corporate speakers, 6 Microsoft Regional Directors, and 70 Microsoft MVPs.

In the next few days, we will be publishing the initial program for the European Collaboration Summit 2023. I have to say that our content team members, Martina Grom (MVP, RD), Vesa Juvonen (Microsoft), Thomas Vochten (MVP), Mustafa Toroman (MVP), and Mike Fitzmaurice (a living legend), coordinated by Spence and Mustafa, have done a great job. There may be some slight changes to the program in the coming weeks (we have kept some backup sessions, and we expect a few more sessions and speakers from our friends in Redmond), but this is essentially it.

Before I delve into statistics, I would like to provide some background on how the team arrived at its decisions. This year, we received nearly 1000 session submissions. With only 100 selected sessions, that means that only one in ten sessions was chosen. This made the selection process extremely difficult, and unfortunately, some excellent speakers and sessions did not make it into the official program.

Regarding the selection process itself, this year we used run.events, which was not only was very helpful with such a large number of submissions, but it also greatly aided the content team during the selection process. Each team member could rate sessions as “Can’t have,” “Not awesome,” “It’s okay,” “Awesome,” or “Must have.” We intentionally avoided numerical ratings because a three-star rating might mean something completely different for different people.

Then, we double-weighted the “Must have” and “Can’t have” ratings to highlight sessions that were somehow “special”: if a session had low ratings overall but there was a content team member who marked it as “Must have,” there was a discussion about the reasons for it. The same was true for sessions that were marked as “Can’t have.”
The vast majority of sessions had an average rating of “It’s okay,” and most of these did not make the cut. Sessions with an average rating of “Awesome” mostly ended up in the program, except in cases where there were similar sessions from other speakers with even higher ratings. There were also a few sessions with an average rating of “Must have,” which all made it into the program.

The topics of the selected sessions align nicely with the focus topics of this year’s European Collaboration Summit: the majority of selected sessions are about security, compliance, and governance, followed by Microsoft Teams, Power Platform, and development. Other topics that are also well-represented at this year’s conference include Microsoft Viva, data/AI, and adoption. In addition to these major topics, you will also see sessions on Microsoft Graph, Microsoft 365 infrastructure, Microsoft 365 services, and Microsoft 365 PnP topics at the European Collaboration Summit.

The content team has selected 22 Microsoft corporate speakers, 7 Microsoft Regional Directors, and 70 Microsoft MVPs.

The European Collaboration Summit speakers come from 22 different countries. Most of them are from the USA (21), but that is largely due to the number of Microsoft people coming from Redmond. Another 15 speakers are from the UK, followed by 12 from Germany and 10 from the Netherlands. Belgium, Austria, Finland, Canada, Switzerland, Norway, and Sweden complete the top 10 countries with the most speakers. The remaining countries represented are Spain, Portugal, Italy, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina (two speakers each), South Africa, Slovenia, Poland, Iceland, France, and Bulgaria (one speaker each).

Overall, we are extremely happy with this year’s program, which is very much worthy of our 10th birthday and our “big celebration.” We are confident that all of you will find something of interest in this program and join us for this big collaboration party.

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