The story of Global Donut Day 2023

An overview of what happened for the very first Global Donut Day on 13th November 2023

Summary

Global Donut Day (GDD) was an idea that emerged from a few pioneering members of the DEAL Community, inspired by the Amsterdam Donut Deal Day in October 2022, following the question ‘what if we all held local Doughnut festivals in our cities on the same day?’. Over 50 people contributed to its co-design from June to September.

GDD 2023 took place on Monday 13th November in 56 places across 26 countries, organising over 100 local events that involved over four thousand people. Parallel to this there was a Global Online Programme that reached over 500 people and included 16 events offered by local organisers, and 8 events and 5 moments of global connection hosted by the DEAL Team.


The ideation, design and delivery of GDD was the summation of the gifts and determination of many hundreds of people across the DEAL Community and many thousands of volunteer hours, stewarded by the local organising teams around the world and the Core Global Donut Day Team, who held the process of co-design and online delivery.


This was the first year of GDD and there were many learnings, insights and ideas that have emerged from an extensive review period, gathering feedback from local organisers, participants, the Core GDD Team and members of the DEAL Team.


You can watch the GDD 2023 aftermovie here:


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And you can see lots of pictures from the day here:

https://coda.io/d/Global-Donut-Day_dPJVDwWvbsU/Media-Wall_suyN3#_luQ8s



Who participated

There were many ways to participate in GDD 2023: as a co-designer working with the Core GDD Team to design elements of GDD; as a local organiser liaising with the Core GDD Team; as a member of a local organising team; as a participant of a local event; and as a participant of an online event as part of the Global Online Programme.


Co-designers

We intentionally co-designed GDD with the place-based practitioners from around the global DEAL Community so that we could meet the local organising needs of many. Approximately half of the local organisers (c.28) were actively involved in the co-design process, stepping into working groups to shape choices on branding, governance, online programming and accessibility.


Local organisers

With this being our first year of organising GDD, our expectations were that we might get 10 to 20 local organisers, but the interest exceeded this expectation and we ended up with 56 places organising in 26 countries, from legally registered organisations and networks to informal groups, at all scales from the neighbourhood to the nation. Some local organisers had been working with Doughnut Economics for many years and some used GDD to kick-start their work with Doughnut Economics. And there was a wide spectrum of local activity, from some places choosing to hold one event, to those who coordinated a week of events (Leeds) or a nationally coordinated festival in numerous places (Brazil).


A picture of a table of all GDD 2023 local organisers


In addition to the 56 local organisers:

  • two other groups - Cambridge Doughnut Economics Action Group (CamDEAG) and Oxfordshire Doughnut Economics Collective (ODEC) helped shape the initial proposal for GDD (alongside the groups in Amsterdam, Munich and London) but ended up not organising local events on the day.
  • at least six other places indicated the desire to organise locally but were unable to do so for various reasons, including: Manchester, UK; Lyon, France; British Columbia, Canada; Prescott, Arizona, USA; Cheltenham, UK and Ireland.
  • and there were 16 sessions organised and hosted by local organisers as part of the Global Online Programme, including the organisation MasterPeace.


Online participants

We co-designed the Global Online Programme around two key audiences - those attending local events and those joining the online programme only, recognising that local events were only happening in certain places. There were over 1,900 registrations to the online programme, but the final number of attendees was closer to 500.



Locally organised festivals and events

There was a wonderful diversity of locally organised events. You can see:

  • All the locally organised events that were published on the DEAL platform here.
  • All the stories written by local event organisers here.
  • And many pictures that were shared on the day here.


A picture of the GDD 2023 locally organised events that were shared on the DEAL platform


The types of locally organised events included:


Workshops


Check out this movie from Amsterdam which featured a number of different workshops and gatherings:


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Events for specific audiences 

  • Sector-focused events, e.g. the arts, urban design, education, food systems, mobility etc.
  • Running a business design workshop using the Doughnut Design for Business tool.
  • Events designed specifically for young people.


Events for people to connect

  • Networking events with drinks and snacks.
  • Community dinners to exchange information about latest activities and projects, celebrating successes, and also sharing concerns.
  • Events connecting different economic actors together, like city officials, community members, people from schools and universities, local business people.
  • Online gatherings to connect with others across your place.
  • Events that connected people across GDD events around the world.
  • Drop-in events for people to meet people, learn and ‘have a say’ on various topics.


Playful and cultural events

  • Events based on playing a game together.
  • Musical events.
  • Running art workshops and creative activities.


Outdoor events

  • Doing a neighbourhood walk / walkshop
  • Planting something in the community.


Check out this walkshop from Regen Sydney around the neighbourhood of Manly:

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Video-based events

  • Watching online events streamed from the Global Online Programme, then holding local conversations afterwards.
  • Screening a documentary and holding a conversation afterwards.


Talks

  • Having inspiring talks from local initiatives contributing to getting into the Doughnut.
  • Introducing the organising group of the local events


Launch events



The Global Online Programme

The Global Online Programme included 16 events offered by local organisers, 8 events hosted by the DEAL Team, 5 moments of global connection and a parallel Global Cafe for meeting others.


A picture of the GDD Global Online Programme showing DEAL hosted events in yellow and locally organised events in green


Design choices


The events were designed around two key audiences:

  1. those organising local events who wanted to design their events around the online sessions so that their local audience could see the content and see the bigger picture of the global action.
  2. those attending online who aren’t attending a local event, who want to learn more about Doughnut Economics and be a part of the day by witnessing the action of other places and by connecting with others around the world.



The DEAL programme

The DEAL programme offered seven events and five separate moments for global connection throughout the day. There was a Global Café that ran throughout the day as an open space where people could meet others, ask and respond to questions on the GDD forum and mark themselves on the GDD global map.


You can click the links below to watch the sessions on YouTube, or you can see the full GDD 2023 YouTube playlist here.



DEAL programme #1


Opening and Global Connections #1 | BSL translation | Chinese translation

The opening session of Global Donut Day included a welcome and introduction to the day by Rob Shorter, followed by connections with locally organised Doughnut Economics events in Melbourne (Australia), Beijing (China) and São Mamede (Portugal), finishing with the story of how DEAL started from co-founders Kate Raworth and Carlota Sanz.


An Introduction to Doughnut Economics #1 | BSL translation | Chinese translation

Kate Raworth gave a swift introduction to the seven ways to think using props, then invited everyone in the session to join small breakout conversations to reflect together on ‘’What are we learning as we seek to put these concepts into practice, in our many different contexts?’ which were then brought back to the plenary, along with some questions for Kate to respond to and reflect upon.


Doughnut Economics for Business: Insights and Experiences From Practitioners | BSL translation

In this session, Erinch Sahan provided an introduction to the way businesses can engage with Doughnut Economics, and change-makers Ekin Al, Marena Eirich and Tim Frenneaux, who are using the concept and tools, shared insights from how it can be used to transform companies around the world.


Ideas into Action: Organising as a Group or Network for Change | BSL translation

This session offered insights, tips and stories about why self-organising groups and networks are using the ideas and tools of Doughnut Economics to get started and inform their ongoing work to help transform their place to be in the Doughnut from Rob Shorter and Amsterdam Donut Coalition members Rosa Tibosch and Maartje Bos. The opening talk was then followed by breakout rooms on 1) getting started 2) growing the network and 3) working with the municipality.


The Four Lenses of Doughnut Unrolled: Practical Possibilities for Action | BSL translation

This session introduced the Doughnut Unrolled framework and the many practical possibilities to turn it into workshops, processes, policies or projects in communities, local governments or specific sectors. After an introductory presentation by Leonora Grcheva there were real practical examples shared by Catriona Rawsthorne from CIVIC SQUARE (Birmingham, England), Annika Hjelmskog (Glasgow, Scotland) and Dani Hill-Hansen and Kasper Guldager Jensen (Denmark).


Closing, Reflection and Global Connections #1 | BSL translation

In this first closing session, hosted by Will Bull, we heard summaries and reflections from each of the DEAL sessions, followed by connections with locally organised Doughnut Economics events in Exeter (UK) and Istanbul (Turkey).


DEAL programme #2


Opening and Global Connections #2

To start the second DEAL programme there were connections with locally organised Doughnut Economics events Amsterdam (The Netherlands), London (UK) and Kilifi (Kenya), followed by the story of how DEAL started from co-founders Kate Raworth and Carlota Sanz.


An Introduction to Doughnut Economics #2 | BSL translation | Brazilian Portuguese translation

As per An Introduction to Doughnut Economics #1 but with different responses and questions from participants.


Taking Doughnut Economics to Schools and Education: Empowering Future Generations | BSL Translation

In this session Carolina Escobar-Tello shared the foundational Doughnut Economics learning tools that she and others at DEAL are developing, including the overarching vision and some examples of the ongoing prototyping work. The session also welcomed participants to contribute to how we can co-create the future of education together.


Meeting the Needs of All: Tuning in to Our Needs, Yours and Mine (with BSL Translation)

DEAL teamed up with the Universal Recognition Movement - a growing global group of diverse Disabled and d/Deaf accessibility consultants - to explore improving accessibility for Global Donut Day. This was a panel discussion hosted by Rebecca Lee (founder of the Universal Recognition Movement) and included members of the GDD Accessibility project Adeel Mo, Calum Grevers, Jenny McGibbon, Sahera Khan and DEAL Team members Carolina Escobar-Tello and Rob Shorter. The panel shared insights from their experience of accessibility and their implications for how we meet everyone’s needs as well as what it means for the Doughnut Economics community of practice.


From GDP Growth To Thriving In The Doughnut | BSL Translated

In this session, ecological economists Timothée Parrique and Andrew Fanning reflected on the question ‘What is the role of economic growth in the transformation needed to secure a thriving future for humanity and the rest of the living world?’ in an open conversation informed by empirical insights from degrowth and post-growth research that emphasises the urgent need to overcome economies’ dependence on growth in an equitable manner, especially in wealthy countries.


Closing, Reflection and Global Connections #2 | BSL translation

In this second closing session, hosted by Will Bull, we heard summaries and reflections from each of the DEAL sessions, followed by connections with locally organised Doughnut Economics events in Rio de Janeiro (Brazil) and Skopje (North Macedonia).



Global events offered by local organisers

There were 16 events offered by local organisers as part of the Global Online Programme.


Screening of BIOCÊNTRICOS Documentary

Event page here

In the documentary BIOCENTRICOS, these and other provocations are answered through the eyes and voice of biologist and biomimeticist Janine Benyus. Traveling to various corners of the planet, Janine reveals the birth and principles that guide biomimetics: a transdisciplinary methodology of technological innovation that seeks solutions to our problems through observation and inspiration from nature and the planet Earth.


You can watch the recording of the panel discussion with Janine Benyus here, and for all those interested in Doughnut Design for Business, from 27:30 Janine speaks about how nature would design businesses!

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Learning from C40 Thriving Cities Initiative in Glasgow and Barcelona

Event page here

The Thriving Cities Initiative (TCI) begins with a question, that being, “How can our city be a home to thriving people in this thriving place, while respecting the wellbeing of all people and the health of the whole planet?” This question is informed by Doughnut Economics, which provides a framework for moving towards economic thinking that prioritizes people and the planet. Using Doughnut Economics as a starting point, TCI provides support to cities (currently Barcelona and Glasgow) to explore how to move towards thriving by shifting towards more equitable and sustainable consumption patterns through collaboration, policy, planning, communications, engagement, and monitoring and evaluation. 


The upgraded Brussels Donut Portrait

Event page here

During this presentation (both available online and in-person), Fanny Dethier (PostDoc Economist in ICHEC Brussels Management School, Belgium) will dive into how Brussels Donut locally downscaled Doughnut Economics to design a data portrait capable of providing invaluable insights into the Brussels Region’s transition journey towards a safe and just space for humanity.


ACT! as a Doughnut | Downscaling the doughnut for youth

Event page here

In this online session we will share best practices on how to use the Doughnut methodology to engage, connect and empower youngsters. Teachers, Youth workers and Youngsters will share on their experiences and we will go into different workshop formats MasterPeace developed around the doughnut. 


Dialogue on how to use Doughnut Economics by CSOs in Global South

Event page here

In this online session we will share best practices from Asia and Africa on how to use the combination of social and climate actions and have a dialogue on the interrelatedness of peacebuliding, gender and climate action in the global south.


Die Donut Ökonomie als Steuerungsrahmen für eine nachhaltigere Wirtschaft und Gesellschaft? Herausforderungen und Chancen

Event page here

In this session we will discuss the potentials of the Doughnut Economy as a governance framework for a more sustainable economy and society with experts from politics, business, science and civil society in Hamburg. The Session will be held at the Lichthof at the University of Hamburg. If you want to follow the session online, you will find a Zoom-Link on the 13.11.23 on our webside: https://www.doughnut.hamburg/termine/


Donut Pioneers and Systemic Change: Starting a European Research Collaboration

Event page here

The Amsterdam Donut Coalition has worked for the last three years to build a strong community of what we call ‘donut pioneers’, people who put Doughnut Economy into practice. Now we are ready for the next step. Partners of the Amsterdam Doughnut Coalition have come together to learn from the challenges and successes of pioneers and integrate these lessons into the system to create real systemic change. In this session, we will present the provisional findings of our exploration of systemic challenges for pioneers of the Donut Economy in Amsterdam, and discuss opportunities for a European research project into working towards a Donut Economy. 


Strategic Overview of CIVIC SQUARE and Doughnut Economics as our 21st Century Compass for Neighbourhood Transition(s)

Event page here

Are you interested in why we at CIVIC SQUARE use the doughnut as our core organising framework? And how we use it practically and systemically within our work? 


Join Immy Kaur, co-founder of CIVIC SQUARE, as she shares the strategic overview of CIVIC SQUARE and how we use the Doughnut Economics framework as our 21st Century compass for demonstrating neighbourhood-scale civic infrastructure for social, ecological and climate transition that is designed, owned and governed by the people who live there.


Building a Neighbourhood Portrait of Place - An Evolving Methodology

Event page here

Join the researchers who worked on the Ladywood Doughnut Portrait of Place to learn more about how it was co-created within the neighbourhood, the types of data that informed this and the process of the pulling it together. We will give insight into the deliberation and decisions made, and how we are using this compass as a tool to guide the next phases of neighbourhood organising. This is an opportunity for anyone hoping to put together their own portrait of place to understand the process taken at a neighbourhood scale, and to ask some of the research team any questions to help you get started.


Surfacing Green Shoots of a New Economy in your Place

Event page here

Join Daniel and Nettes from the CIVIC SQUARE team as they share how we began a deep practice of surfacing and mapping stories of hope and transformation, unlocking everyday imagination in our neighbourhood. Reimagining the neighbourhood newspaper as a platform for spotlighting projects, ideas, and weaving networks of people already moving the neighbourhood towards the safe and just space of the doughnut. If you’re interested in the development of our Doughnut Story Canvas or how spotlighting can support you to build relationships and connections across your place, this is the session for you.


A Just Transition for the Built Environment: social and ecological foundations through the Doughnut

Event page here

One of our three key demonstrators involves the retrofit and refurbishment of a historic industrial building site in our neighbourhood into a regenerative public square. We are currently working on the multiple layers of deep re-design required in the ways neighbourhood-scale infrastructures are designed, owned, governed, financed and how value is generated and measured, in ways that are both distributive and regenerative-by-design. It is also a demonstration of the types of physical infrastructure that provides access to the tools, spaces, and knowledges that enables communities to co-design and co-lead their own neighbourhood-scale transitions that bring our places back within the doughnut’s safe and just space.


Encontro de visões e sonhos: Donut na prática //  Meeting of visions and dreams: Donut in practice

Event page here

In Porto Alegre, members of the Donut Brasil community are preparing a virtual panel called "Meeting of visions and dreams: Donut in practice". 

The event is being organized by two impact businesses, Nuvem Sustentabilidade and Ambedu, and has the institutional support of Sistema B Brasil, ASsSan Círculo (UFRGS), Tecnopuc, Instituto LivMundi, Menos 1 Lixo, Green Thinking, Formô Hub and Zero Waste Lab - all brazilian companies, universities and institucions. The meeting is going to take place virtually (via Zoom), and it will lasts one hour and thirty minutes. Some of the features of the event will be a panel in which 5 speakers are going present different topics about the Donut Economy. 


Donut Economics and the Economy of Francis and Clare

Event page here

The Donut Economy has a strong connection to the principles of the Economy of Francis and Clare, as envisioned and promoted by Pope Francis.

Come and learn more about these new economic concepts and how some of the Catholic universities in Brazil are working with these themes.


Doughnuts Down Under

Event page here

How might we reimagine a safe and just future for our place? Join us for a brown bag session with Regen Melbourne and Regen Sydney to explore the multiple ways we are creating Doughnut cities in Australia. 

Learn more about the co-creation process we undertook, based on countless hours of analysis of our context, research and mapping work and community engagement. And see how a local version of the global Doughnut down under serves as a powerful new compass for our respective cities, navigating us toward a thriving future within planetary boundaries. 



Global Cafe

The Global Cafe was an online zoom room, open for the duration of GDD, hosted by volunteers, as a safe space for people to come to and connect with others around the world.


We designed the space so that you could ask questions on a Global Forum discussion board and talk about topics of common interest in various breakout rooms. We also created a Global Cafe Map for people to add themselves to, with the hope that by the end of the day we’d see 100s of faces around the world added to the map.


In reality, not many people came to the Global Cafe with numbers averaging 1 or 2 people (not including the 2 volunteers at any time) and peaking at about 5 or 6. We believe this was down to a number of factors including a general lack of clarity about what the Global Cafe was and reasons for visiting, the general low turnout to the Zoom Event space, lots of other things going on at the same time!



GDD 2023 Support Team

A core support team of five people helped steward the process of GDD's co-creation and delivery. Here we are on zoom!

A picture of the GDD 2023 support team looking happy


Will Bull, Project Manager, oversaw and managed the co-design process and delivery of the Global Online Programme.

Rob Shorter, DEAL Communities and Art Lead, stewarded the integrity and intentions of GDD and the process of its creation. 


Aimee Laurel, DEAL Communications Lead, created the communications pack and communication plan for the event and led the development of the event branding, designed by Mark from design agency Changency, and with contributions from local organisers.


Rosa Tibsoch, Global Online Programme Lead, led the co-design and development of the methods of global connection. Rosa is the Community Manager of Amsterdam Donut Coalition and also project managed the Amsterdam Donut Deal Day, upon which Global Donut Day was based.


Rebecca Lee, GDD Accessibility Lead, Accessibility Consultant and founder of the Universal Recognition Movement, a growing community of Disabled, d/Deaf and neurodivergent accessibility consultants and creatives. Rebecca assembled a Universal Recognition team and facilitated co-creative workshops to help improve the accessibility of GDD.


Benefits of GDD 2023

Following an extensive review process with local organisers and participants, the following key benefits were identified.

Enabling global connection. Global Donut Day connected people and strengthened existing relationships across the global community or Doughnut Economics practitioners.

Making visible the global community of grassroots practitioners and communities to build a sense of being part of something bigger. Seeing others makes you feel you are not alone, and it helps you see how big the collective impact is.


“It was really powerful, being able to connect with people globally around our work and around a much bigger story of economic transformation. Being a much bigger picture beyond us beyond like any single one of our organisations that were hosting individual events through global Donut Day.”


Catriona Rawsthorne, CIVIC SQUARE, Birmingham, UK


Creating a moment to start. GDD created a container for local organising that gave a compelling moment to start local action for those who have been meaning to act, through its global energy, attention and local organiser support.

“As a team we’ve been wanting to bring the Doughnut to the city for years … and we wouldn’t have done it if DEAL hadn’t decided to do [GDD]. It was the push for us to do it. It made us realise that there is a huge need for community and connection and more trust and more social connection.”


Alexandra Anghel, Cluj Sustainable, Cluj-Napoca, Romania.


Creating a moment to reach new audiences. GDD also enabled local organisers to reach new audiences and form new connections, strengthening existing relationships locally and forming a community around the ideas and possibilities for their place.


“I was in for a big surprise. Scotland was quite advanced in terms of Doughnut Economics. And a lot of people were engaged in wanting to get involved and do a lot of things. And lots of projects are happening across Scotland. So just by announcing that we're doing it, we got a lot of response from different people. So the event was really good.”


Vinishree Verma, Scotland Doughnut Economics Network organiser, Scotland, UK.

“It helped us a lot. And we will make a project on rainwater harvesting with the community and with the school of design. So it was very very useful” 


Eva Valencia-Lenero, Tricolour Coalition, Mexico City, Mexico.


Starting a cycle of learning. It was never going to be perfect. There were so many unknowns but it yielded so many learnings and insights from which to evolve to future iterations. It was also a platform to start the accessibility work.


“I just want to say how amazing it was, the first one, and it was great to have that event sort of put in, and that milestone that we're kind of talking about, that we had a global Donut Day. It's great that we can sort of say, okay, what worked, what can we do a little bit better.”


Georgina Hutchinson, Milton Keynes, UK




Enablers of GDD 2023

There were many things that contributed to enabling GDD 2023. Here are a few.


The commitment of local organisers. One of the key challenges of this first Global Donut Day was the level of time and energy required of local organisers, much of which was offered as volunteer time. Without the level of commitment local organisers had, the majority of local events would not have happened and the global reach would have been far reduced.


The care given to the co-design process. Central to the organising of Global Donut Day was the care and attention given to the process of its creation. GDD was not created by the DEAL Team for the DEAL Community in a hierarchical way, rather it was co-designed with the DEAL Community, stewarded by the Core GDD Team and co-stewarded by all. This brought a quality and depth of relating to the process collaboration, felt most acutely in the local organiser bi-weekly meetings, that cultivated a spirit of trust and gratitude amongst those involved. This is likely to have radiated out amongst local organising groups and participants of local events, as well as to those participating online.


A focal point of global attention. By coordinating the Global Online Programme to one day, it created a supportive energy and reason to organise local events, as organisers could entice people to local events with the additional gravity of the global occasion and the tangible global attention to the day.

Bi-weekly local organiser meetings. A central pillar to the organising process was the bi-weekly local organiser meetings on zoom, held at two different times, to enable participation from both Asia-Pacific and Americas time zones. The meetings served many needs, from answering questions, getting back up to speed with developments, maintaining momentum, forming relationships with other organisers and feeling like you’re part of contributing to something bigger.


Support resources. The communications pack and templates were a very valued enabler for local organisers.

DEAL’s emergent strategy and core funding.
Since the start of DEAL we have been intentional in creating a collective of funders, who fund the whole organisation with unrestricted core funding. The flexible and unrestricted nature of our grants so far has allowed us to follow the energy, adjust our priorities as we experiment and learn from the practice, and to focus on what we continue to believe is our main contribution: putting powerful concepts and tools into the collaborative commons to bring about transformative change and enable a distributed community of practice that spreads Doughnut Economics wide and with integrity. Global Donut Day was an example of following that energy, and the unrestricted nature of our funding enabled us to allocate a budget to enable the co-design of various elements, the creation of various elements, stewardship of the process and the delivery of the Global Online Programme.



Challenges of GDD 2023

As mentioned in the benefits of GDD, this being the first Global Donut Day meant that it was never going to be perfect, it was great to just make a start. There were so many unknowns but it yielded so many learnings and insights from which to evolve to future iterations.

Hybrid format and event interdependencies. The Global Online Programme was designed to complement and add support to local organising. However the level of interdependence between planning, scheduling and delivery of the Global Online Programme with the very many local events led to compounding delays in co-design, complexities in delivery and around stress felt by all. The parallel design of online and in-person sessions meant many local organisers weren’t able to participate in the Global Connections and watch sessions from the Global Online Programme because of coordinating local activities. And those who did manage to participate in the Global Connections and watch sessions from the Global Online Programme experienced overwhelm and stress with fitting everything in, aligning with timings and managing the tech to support hybrid events, with both in-person and online elements. There was a knock on impact to the online event support team and a detrimental impact on the online participant's experience.

For GDD 2024, we are having one day of online programming, followed by three days in which to organise local events.


Lack of funding and resourcing of local organising. There was a wide diversity of local organising teams, from those with paid employees, to those with a mix of paid and unpaid team members, to those that were completely made of unpaid volunteers. And whilst local organisers delivered so much with such little resources, a very high burden was placed on organisers time and wellbeing. Access to funding, would have enabled a reduced burden on people’s volunteer time, as well as to provide access to event spaces, food, materials and transport. Access to funding is a recognised issue across the DEAL Community, however for GDD it was a particular challenge for those organising in the so-called global South locations, where a small amount of funds would have gone a very long way to enabling events.


For GDD 2024, we are opening a workstream to explore funding needs in more detail and co-design a process to distribute a small amount of financial resources to local organisers.


The unknowns, lack of certainty and pace of co-design. GDD 2023 was very much a venture into the unknown where we embraced the emergent nature of opening the co-design to all local organisers, so that it could be truly shaped by all. However this came with challenges. The first was that things took more time - longer than a hierarchical approach of the DEAL Team imposing a design for all to follow. And the second was the uncertainty of how much pivoting and iteration was needed at the various stages of co-design according to the inputs of everyone involved. With it being the first GDD 2023 there was little (lack of experience) to anchor our initial propositions on, so there were more pivots and iterations that we can anticipate in future years.


Local organiser overwhelm and burnout. All the challenges above contributed to local organiser overwhelm and burnout. Additional factors included: 1) where one person was having to do all the roles, from venue, to comms, to tech and more; 2) the challenge of delegating roles and responsibilities to volunteers without being able to pass on accountability to those volunteers; 3) the lack of specific event organising and delivery skills amongst the local organiser teams; 4) being the pinch-point of communication between the GDD Core Team and all the local organisers in your place 5) the amount of communications to keep on top of from the Core GDD Team and 5) managing expectations and tensions amongst diverse perspectives locally. As a result of all these factors, many local organisers were pushed to the limit, and whilst the events delivered many benefits, changes need to be made to make organising something in 2024 feasible and appealing.


Complexity of registration and guide. Over 1,900 people signed up to the Online Global Programme but fewer than 500 people attended. There were barriers and complexities at many stages, including the 1) GDD homepage on the DEAL website 2) the email out to participants containing the Coda link, too close to the event 3) the complexity of the Coda guide 4) The complexity of gaining access into the Zoom Events platform. 

For GDD 2024, we will use our learnings to reduce these barriers and make it as easy and accessible to join the online programme on 6th November 2024 as possible.


Limited design around different access needs, languages and cultures. The accessibility project guide was released only one week before GDD. We were able to organise BSL interpreters for all online events organised by DEAL, and the Coda pages had visual image descriptions, but there was not a more extensive design around different access needs than that. In terms of language and culture, we were limited by the live language translators that local organisers could arrange, who were then sourced by Donut Brazil (Brazilian Portuguese translation) and Wildbound (Chinese translation).

For GDD 2024, we have opened a workstream dedicated to language and culture which will kick-off with listening sessions with GDD 2023 organisers. We hope, through this, we will create content and live sessions in more languages and accessible to more cultures. We will also plan to keep the great GDD 2023 accessibility work alive through the guide and a dedicated introduction and Q&A session for GDD 2024 organisers - more to follow!


Global Donut Days 2024

Building on the momentum, successes, learnings and insights from GDD 2023, we're delighted to be bringing GDD back as a multi-day event in 2024 from 6th to 9th November.

GDD 2024 will start with a day of online content hosted by the DEAL Team. There will then be three days for locally organised events. We will then reconvene with a celebration event, online, for event organisers to share and reconnect.

A picture of the GDD 2024 programme overview


Stay tuned for how to register.

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