Announcing the first OuiShare Fest Cairo - Egypt 2018 (#ASF18)
Where it comes from? (context)
Ouishare Cairo was born over one year ago and still a digital community only. It’s time to do something that brings the community together and link it to all the local and global ecosystem. It’s time for the First Ouishare Fest in the region which coincidence to be the first Zero Waste Event in the region too.
Why are we doing it?
The Arab world development is really fast and Egypt has just been ranked to be the 3rd fastest growing economy in the world in 2026 by a Harvard study. Not many people are trying to develop new ways of working and living and create solutions to societal challenges with the help of technologies. So, for me, it’s The Good Time and The Good Place to build something big. Egypt is the link between the MENA region, the Middle East, Sub-Saharan Africa, Asia. It also links the Indian Ocean to the Mediterranean sea, so Europ. And no need to talk about its influence in the region and its history.
How are we going to do it?
The event will be a Ouishare Fest style, 3 days with 3 stages each (one main and two secondaries). The whole will be enveloped by artistic performances which will be designed to serve our theme (see below). For me, the event itself is not the objective. It’s a pretext to build an active strong local community, to put Ouishare in an avant-garde place in the region, not to be showy but to be heard in the long term, and to connect the local ecosystem to the global (read more below - theme). As usual, we will walk our talks with a Zero Waste policy which will be one of our biggest challenge regarding the development of this subject locally.
It will not be called Ouishare Fest. But powered by Ouishare. Why?
We will do like Colabor America. We don’t want to import an European brand and implement it locally… It’s not gonna work. Instead, we want to create a strong local brand which grows within the local community (ONE). There is a lot of tech event in the region, like RiseUp Summit which is really awesome, but we can resume it in two points as any tech event in the world, how to raise many? And how to do tech for tech? Almost no one is asking the most important questions, why? For whom? To solve which problem? What will be its impact on our lives? (TWO). The third and last point, we are living in a shifting moment. We are changing everything around us, our human interactions, production, consumption, education, mobility, and so on. But we are not taking the right shift that will bring us to a Future we desire (?!). We need an Alternative Shift.
Welcome to AltShiftFestival.com* #ASF18**
We were searching the subject that illustrates our mindset, think global and act local, and the project itself. A subject which approaches us to the avant-garde position.
Since we are Designing AltShift Festival as a platform. From one side and very humbly, it will be the knowledge lighthouse in the region which bring the most prominent and critical concepts and knowledge from all over the world, and from the other side, a promoter of local ideas, activities, economy, initiatives, etc. We came up with...
“Platformization... Global Trend ⇄ Local Applications”
We used the term “Platformization” and not platform to illustrate the fact that we will talk about platform thinking not platforms from a tech point of view. Still, and for sure, we will talk tech from a business, societal, and social point of view. Communication should make this point clearer.
The venue will be divided into 4 stages: Main stage and 3 secondary stages. The main stage will host the first have a day for the opening then the Platformization track, and the last two hours of the event the tracks wrap up that will be done by students. For the three other stages, we adopted a simple rule to make it easy for participants to navigate the program… “One day, One stage, One subject”. For now, we have a mobility track (Ghislain), Education (Thomas), Decentralised Tech (Joachim and Mehdi from APIDays), Health (An Egyptian Doctor called Ahmed), Future of Work (Claudia - Egypt), Zero Waste (Karim - Egypt). We left space (20%) in the program with the purpose to invite life to do it work and be open for opportunities.
The Dream Team
The team is between Cairo and Europe working together on communication, the venue, the program, logistics, fundraising, etc. We reached 30 persons so far and I think we will reach the 100. A special big up to Yasmine (France) who joined the team more than a month ago and bring the structure that I miss as a creative person.
We need you to join and make this team stronger and show Egypt what Ouishare is capable of. So don’t be late :). To join the Dream Team, please apply HERE.
We are targeting 5 million Egyptian pounds (+200K euros). We will raise money from Egypt and from Europe (France). The connections are growing in a great way. Still, we have the timing challenge that we will overcome. This is not an option. We will do it… with your help. To do so, we adopt a collaborative Fundraising strategy. If you close a deal, you will earn 3% of the deal. And if we reached the total budget, the 3% will become 5%. Who is in?
Last but not least
In order to thank everyone who made this event happen, to incentivize speakers to come, and to link the whole with our partners, we will organize a retreat in the Egyptian Desert. A place and an atmosphere that you never thought that this is Egypt Too :)
I will be more than happy to answer your questions in here. Send us good vibes!
Updates 31st of July... the most important
- We fixed the Dates from 18 to 20 October. We have two options for the venue but still looking for the perfect one,
- We Innovate (lol) by holding a startup sports competition on the evening of each day,
- We have a crazy idea about building the Post Industrial City where participants will experience living in a zero waste, circular economy, etc. with focus groups for implementations IRL,
- We will have a retreat from the 22 to 25 October (dates to be confirmed) to work on the Egyptian Ecosystem with Egyptian actors using PDT ;),
- We reduced the budget from 5 to one million EGP (have of it to bring speakers) and decided that, whatever happened, we will hold the event in a DIY mode,
- Aaaaaannd we closed our first investment round (lol, sponsoring) from POC21 community for 5500$. Thanks a million to them
Update 12 September 2018
More than one person asked me questions/concerns here and there. I will try to resume all the answers as an update. It's time :slight_smile: :
- The website is up and running www.AltShiftFestival.com
- The actual team is composed of +30 persons, with different levels of contribution/commitment, from 6 countries. Including 5 Connectors and 1 former Connector (Alexandre, Alicia, Bernie, David C, Joachim, and me). To put it into perspective, and I might be wrong but don't think that Ouishare fest in 2013, or Barcelone 2014, Colabor America in 2015 or Medellin this year had this number of international collaborations. Anyhow, you can see here who do what,
- The co-creation of the program was open since day one of the project. Some persons joined, some didn't!
- Concerning the finance (money, money, money), we had the first support, from outside, from POC21 community of 4700 Euros (which will be dedicated in a big part if not all to travel and accommodations) and myself where I finance all my personal expenses since last December, and more to come with the production, from the money that I earned working on Ouishare project. If you want and can help us somehow, please do contact me. Unfortunately (or luckily should I say), we didn't manage to find other financial support for many reasons. The most important one is that this is the first event we do in Cairo and also because raising money in Egypt now, even for others with more experience locally, is very hard. The good part of this situation is that we are forced to be more creative and have the liberty to do whatever we want as we want. For example, putting all our community partners (local or international organisations that helped us somehow) in alphabétical order. We made deals with each organisation based on exchange value. You help us to do this, we help you to... As simple as that. I discovered that "We want to embed a new culture of collaboration with openness and care to solve together our complex challenges" is the password to open Ali Baba's cave.
- We hope that the ticket sells can allow us to compensate at least the persons who dedicated more time and effort than others, basically team leaders. Nothing guarantee though and everyone knows the situation from A to Z. We even have the volunteers leader who refuses to get any compensation what so ever!
- AltShift Festival will happen in two villas in a very nice neighbor called Maadi. One is by partnering with KMT House and the other villa by accident/luck/perseverance/who knows? I knocked on the door of the next villa to KMT House asking if they rent because we need an extra space at least for the team. The guard answered me that there are people living in it and they don't rent. I managed to meet the Autrichien guy who lives there and immadiately he accepted to help us. He is allowing us to use his garden as one of the three stages + a space for the team 🙏. Cerise Sur le gateau, he owns a company in Egypt which work on solar panels and he accepted to participate in the program + his wife works in UNIDO (for further collaborations),
What will actually happen in AltShift? :
- Day 1 and 2, we will talk about the platformization of our world (with a focus on Simone and PDT teamwork especially in the retreat) and pushing forward the idea that platforms are not only technological. Actually, AltShift is a platform (a safe place free of egos where people come to collaborate with openness and care :relieved: ). The different track/subjects are :
- Futures of Work
- Open Organisations
- Decentralised Technology
- I'm still talking with Asmaa to bring Womanity with there program empowering women
- Open Stage
- Day 3 is another event in the event. We will dare to do a "Regenerative City Model". The idea is to say there are so many positive and alternative concepts which actually exist. What if we gather the maximum we could in a city and see how it could interact with each other. So we divided the city into 6 sections :
- Housing & Life Style
- Resources Management
The day will start with examples in each section. Then we will have a focus group by section. We are not trying to show the ABC Regenerative City but to inspire that a Regenerative City is possible if we came together, each one with Her(is) knowledge, with the willing of actually doing it.
All this from 9am to 6pm max, then, in the evening, we will run a Sports Competition, in a club near by, between startups, corporation, and open to speakers and continue the chill mode with some music and fun and the main venue :slight_smile:
Then we have the retreat from 22 to 25 if we have enough participants to cover the expenses (crossing fingers), where we will run a PDT workshop in front of the sea in Dahab, Red Sea :sunglasses:
Finally, the international persons/speakers who will come so far are our Connectors, Rodrigo from the PDT team, Tin from Open Motors, Mauricio from POC21, and Matthew from Holochain + local entrepreneurs/speakers.
Each point above is handled by a lead or co-Lead + with me as a backup. If you have any questions, I will be happy to answer.
Fun fact: if you use a PC, you know that the AltShift command change the keyboard language :)
* Read our Concept Note HERE.