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Virtual discussions, real connections

You attend the OSAC Annual Briefing to meet great people and learn about new things.

But how do you spark meaningful conversations in a virtual space? This year, OSAC is replicating the real-life networking experience using “Braindates.”

Braindates are live, small-group discussions based on topics posted by OSAC staff, fellow Annual Briefing attendees, and you! You can browse the “Topic Market” ahead of the Annual Briefing and select from existing topics or create up to three of your own. Many conversations will be led by RSOs, OSAC Analysts, and OSAC Council leaders. Some will focus on specific AB panels but all can be used to brainstorm strategies and share experiences while getting to know new colleagues.

The Braindates Topic Market will go live in early November and you will be able to sign up for sessions starting then throughout the end of the Annual Briefing. During the Annual Briefing, there will be live-chat support to assist you with any questions.

Here’s what to do

  1. In early November, registered AB attendees will receive an email with a link to the Braindates Topic Market.
  2. There you can explore and sign up for existing topics and if you like, create up to three new topics where you will be the host.
  3. Once the Annual Briefing starts on November 16th, you will be able to join in on your reserved sessions and continue to browse the Braindate Topic Market to find any new Braindates you may want to join.
  4. As the Braindates you host fill up with at least eight attendees, or once the discussions end, you will be able to create additional topics for others to join.

Braindates are not presentations, they are conversations that stem from a shared interest.

Some tips for meaningful Braindates:

Make sure everyone introduces themselves and contributes to the discussion.

Ask the participant(s) what interested them about the topic.

Be transparent and honest about your own experience related to the topic: You don’t need to be an expert to lead a Braindate.

Don’t forget that everyone has something interesting they can add to the conversation: Adopt a beginner’s mindset.

Remember to include your LinkedIn profile in your Annual Briefing registration. Many great connections start with a simple conversation.

When do we connect?

Themes and Participants

Once the Annual Briefing starts on November 16, you can start to join your reserved Braindates. Check out the Annual Briefing agenda to see suggested discussion questions per panel (click on the panel name).

You will also be able to continue to browse the Topic Market for new discussions to join, or if you haven’t yet, to create up to three of your own topics at a time. Braindates are designed to support both these scheduled discussions and new topics that spark up on the fly.  So keep your Braindate window open throughout the AB to make sure you’re a part of the conversation.

Daily Activity
November 16

Join OSAC Regional Analysts and private sector leaders in small-group discussions on key security events, trends, and concerns in your region.

November 17

Join Braindates before, during, and after each panel to spark and join in on conversations around those specific topics.

September 18

Today is an opportunity to meet directly with the broader Bureau of Diplomatic Security (DS) community and staff. Regional Security Officers and other representatives from across DS will be available to engage in small-group discussions on issues affecting both the public and private sectors. This will also be a chance to meet other OASC members and discuss their portfolios and lessons learned.

See Full Program

About Braindate