How HarvardxDesign Conference used Run The World to Create an Interactive Experience for 1000+ Attendees


After realizing the 9th annual Harvard xDesign conference would need to be virtual, the student organizers of the Harvard Business School and Harvard Graduate School of Design were looking for ways to create an engaging and productive conference online. With Run The World's audience engagement tools like "Grab The Mic" which make panels and breakout discussions very interactive, they were able to create a virtual conference environment that is engaging for the speakers and attendees. With Run The World's tiered ticketing to create two different ticket types, Harvard xDesign was able to manage registration easily while expanding to a global audience online.

By the Numbers:

  • 6 hour conference designed to inform and create interaction between attendees.
  • Over 1,000 tickets sold
  • 3 Groupfie photos taken to remember the event
  • Over 3,000 emoji's clicked during the sessions, showing how engaged participants were.

Event Schedule:

  • 1-2 hour long panels followed by 15 minute breakout sessions to continue the conversation with each individual speaker. They were able to do this process three times, creating a productive event in just 6 hours time.

The story:

Harvard xDesign is a student-run annual conference put on by the Harvard Business School and Harvard Graduate School of Design that brings together creative thinkers, professors, industry leaders, and students to engage, debate, and reinterpret design across sectors. They put on the conference to explore how design has and will continue to shape the way we see and experience the world. When the in person conference turned virtual, using Run The World gave the organizers an opportunity to make creative changes to their conference. They used the panel format for speakers to share insights on the topics at hand, and then broke into breakout discussions where each speaker had a place for attendees to dive further into conversation using "Grab The Mic". They were able to use Run The World to create this interactive environment while helping attendees and speakers connect with each other on a deeper level.

How Harvard xDesign uses RTW:

  • Run The World tiered ticketing to make it a General Admission and Student Ticket.
  • Panels followed by individual talk sessions designed as breakout areas for attendees to interact with speakers.
  • Grab The Mic to allow attendees to come onto stage and ask questions.
  • Groupfie photo feature to create a lasting memory of the conference for attendees and speakers.
The functions available on the platform, from the organizer and attendee perspectives, made the conference experience very unique, creating a virtual environment where it was easy and encouraging to connect to other people and speakers. – Event Organizer