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The best agile and lean development conferences of 2020

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John P. Mello Jr. Freelance writer
 

You can't achieve great management and agility by reading a tutorial. You need to hear stories of how others did it — or how they failed at digital transformation — by networking with experienced practitioners. Conferences are one of the best opportunities to find those people, hear those stories, and turn abstract advice into real-world practices.

Here is TechBeacon's shortlist of the most popular agile and lean software development conferences for 2020.

February

Agile Open Northwest

Twitter: @aonw

Web: agileopennorthwest.org/
Date: February 3-5
Location: Portland, Oregon, USA
Cost: $300

This event, sponsored by a coalition of practitioners and advocates intent on advancing agile, fittingly organizes its approach to sessions using open-space self-organizing principles and technology (OST) so that everyone has a chance not only to learn but also to contribute. Attendees can expect to grow their knowledge of lean and agile principles. Anyone with expertise in a topic related to the conference theme can propose relevant sessions.

Who should attend: Experienced, collaborative, committed agile practitioners and learners, including developers, testers, and business people

OOP 2020

Twitter: @oop_conference, #oopmuc
Web: oop-konferenz.de/oop2020/english.html
Date: February 3-7
Location: Munich, Germany
Cost: Conference, €1,654.10 to €3,403.40 (time-sensitive discounts available); night school, €297.50 to €505.75

OOP bills itself as the conference for software architecture. It has 35 sessions in English, including talks on translating autonomous motivation into practice, avoiding agile transformation failure, and motivating agile teams.

Who should attend: Architects, analysts, software engineers, agile team members, agile coaches, Scrum masters, dev/IT managers, directors, program managers, and developers

DeveloperWeek

Twitter: @DeveloperWeek, #DEVWEEK2020

Web: developerweek.com

Date: February 12-16

Location: Oakland and San Francisco, California, USA

Cost: $895 to $1,595 (time-sensitive discounts available)

DeveloperWeek is a series of conferences held in the United States for developers and technology managers. In addition to the Oakland/San Francisco forum, events are scheduled for Seattle, Washington; New York, New York; and Austin, Texas. The Oakland event, which attracts more than 8,000 developers, engineers, software architects, dev teams, managers, and executives from over 70 countries, includes a hackathon, a tech hiring expo, and a series of workshops, open houses, drink-ups, and city-wide events across San Francisco.

Who should attend: Developers, entrepreneurs, and venture capitalists

LeanAgileUS

Twitter: @LeanAgileUS
Web: leanagileus.com
Date: February 24-26
Location: Fort Lauderdale, Florida, USA
Cost: $249 to $699 (time-sensitive discounts available)

This three-track conference offers something for everyone interested in lean and agile practices. It has a blend of all flavors of agile with speakers from around the globe and tracks that cover everything from introductory to advanced agile topics from a variety of perspectives. Some topics at the 2020 conference include scaling lean and agile metrics across a software company, how to be a better remote agile team member, and using conflict and dissent to create robust, resilient solutions.

Who should attend: Developers, project managers, product owners, Scrum masters, team leaders, managers, and executives

TISQA Conference 2020

Twitter: @TISQA_RTP

Web: tisqa-rtp.squarespace.com

Date: February 26 (workshops) and 27 (conference)

Location: Durham, North Carolina, USA

Cost: Conference, $149; workshops, $299; both, $399

A small conference with some big names, the one-day TISQA conference also includes workshops. It's located in a rapidly growing region of North Carolina for STEM companies, near Raleigh, Chapel Hill, and Research Triangle Park. Workshops cover topics such as testing in continuous delivery, running risk assessments, and behavior-driven development.

Who should attend: Agile practitioners, software developers, software test and QA professionals, software development managers, and QA/test managers

March

Business Agility Conference

Twitter: @BizAgilityConf

Web: businessagility.institute/attend/business-agility-conference-11-12-march-2020-new-york-city

Date: March 11-12

Location: New York, New York, USA

Cost: $1,450 to $1,800 (group and time-sensitive discounts available)

Sponsored by the Business Agility Institute, this event, which attracted 350 people in 2019, focuses on company stories and deep dives that allow conference-goers to discuss what they're learning, share insights, and brainstorm with others into all things related to business agility. A sister conference is being held May 18-19 in Vienna, Austria.

Who should attend: Agile coaches, line managers, and HR professionals

 

Agile Open San Diego

Twitter: @AgileOpenCalif
Web: agileopencalifornia.com/san_diego.html

Date: March 11-13
Location: San Diego, California, USA
Cost (2019): $225

Like Agile Open Northwest this conference is sponsored by a coalition of practitioners and advocates intent on advancing agile. It, too, organizes its sessions using OST so that everyone has a chance not only to learn but also to contribute. Attendees can participate in sessions run by seasoned professionals or host a session of their own.

Who should attend: Experienced, collaborative, and committed agile practitioners and learners, including developers, testers, and business people

Agile India 2019

Twitter: @agileindia / #AgileIndia2020
Web: 2020.agileindia.org
Date: March 15-22
Location: Bengaluru, India
Cost: Conference, Rs7,000 to Rs36,000; workshops Rs5,000 to Rs30,000

Agile India bills itself as Asia's largest conference on leading-edge software development methods. It's hosted by the Agile Alliance and organized by the Agile Software Community of India. The forum includes an agile coach camp and workshops before the start of the event and more workshops after it's finished. Each day focuses on a theme, including agile mindset day, business agility day, design innovation day, and continuous delivery and DevOps day.

Who should attend: Developers, agile practitioners, consultants, software engineers, thought leaders, DevOps team members and leaders, line-of-business managers, project managers, business analysts, programmers, testers, Q&A practitioners, and UX designers

DevOps Talk Conference

Twitter: @DevOpsTalks, #do2020
Web: devops.talksplus.com/au/devops.html
Date: March 19-20
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Cost: $1,099 (group discounts available)

This is the first in a series of conferences that brings together DevOps leaders, engineers, and architects who are implementing DevOps principles and practices in startups and in leading enterprise companies. They run technical and cultural DevOps complex transformation for large and medium organizations. In addition to the Melbourne event, DTC conferences are being held in Auckland, New Zealand, and Singapore.

Who should attend: DevOps leaders, engineers, and architects

DevOpsCon

Twitter: @devops_con, #DevOpsCon
Web: devopscon.io/singapore
Date: March 23-26
Location: Singapore
Cost: US$449 to US$1,499 (group and time-sensitive discounts available)

This is one in a series of conferences by Re-Think IT focusing on continuous delivery, microservices, containers, cloud, and lean business. Sessions cover topics such as achieving easier CI/CD in a Kubernetes microservices environment and managing infrastructure as code. Workshops include an agile retrospective for teams. In addition to the Singapore conference, events will also be held in London, UK (April 21-24); Berlin, Germany (June 8-11); and New York, New York (September 28-October 1).

Who should attend: Developers, software architects, IT Ops, and CxOs

Atlassian Summit

Twitter: @Atlassian / #atlassiansummit
Web: atlassian.com/company/events/summit?utm_source=twitter&utm_campaign=summit2019social_Twitter-post3&utm_medium=organic
Date: March 31-April 2
Location: Las Vegas, Nevada, USA
Cost: conference, $950 to $1,250; conference and training, $1,500 to $2,000; summit and developer day, $1,025 to $1,500; Developer Day, $1,400 (time-sensitive and group discounts available)

The Atlassian community can get expert tips and become Atlassian-certified at this conference. The forum has nine tracks targeting agile, the future of teamwork, use of Atlassian by non-tech teams, DevOps, planning, service and support, scaling Atlassian, administering the Atlassian stack, and personal work productivity tools. For the first time, there'll be a Developer Day at the conference where Atlassian developers have an opportunity to share their knowledge on advanced topics, such as scaling, security, and performance. The event wraps up with a bash and hackathon.

Who should attend: Members of the Atlassian user and partner community

April

Agile-Lean Ireland

Twitter: @AgileLeanIrl / #ALI2020
Web: agileleanireland.org/
Date: April 20-21
Location: Dublin, Ireland
Cost: Conference, €545 (time-sensitive and group discounts available); workshops, €349 to €1,090

This community-led conference mixes open-space sessions with traditional conference workshops, presentations, and lightning talks. Authors and practitioners of agile and lean methodologies are prevalent at this event, including Daniel Vacanti, co-founder and CEO of ActionableAgile, and Lisa Adkins, coach, facilitator, teacher, and author of Coaching Agile Team.

Who should attend: Agile/lean coaches, Scrum masters, product owners, leaders, and developers

May

Global Scrum Gathering

Twitter: @ScrumAlliance
Web: events.scrumalliance.org/sgnyc20
Date: May 11-13
Location: New York, New York, USA
Cost (2019): $1,185 to $1,795 (time-sensitive discounts available)

The event aims to provide Scrum practitioners with an innovative and actionable experience. Past forums have covered a mix of introductory and advanced topics and speakers have focused on how to amplify the benefits of Scrum across all industries, with an emphasis on growth through shared knowledge.

Who should attend: Scrum and agile practitioners, agile enthusiasts, and business leaders and managers

Agile Manchester

Twitter: @agilemanc, #agilemanc
Web: 2020.agilemanchester.net
Date: May 13-15
Location: Manchester, UK
Cost: £200 to £500, plus £40 to £100 VAT (time-sensitive discounts available)

Organizers describe this event as practical agile development conference that allows participants to connect and learn from their peers and leaders in the industry. The conference has a strong practical focus and attracts industry practitioners and decision makers who want to improve their success with agile and lean methods.

Who should attend: Agile practitioners looking for a small conference focused on hands-on training and learning

Mile High Agile

Twitter: @agiledenver / #milehighagile
Web: milehighagile.org/
Date: May 18-19
Location: Denver, Colorado, USA
Cost: $550 (time-sensitive and group discounts available)

Agile Denver, the city's nonprofit community for agile and lean methods, sponsors this conference, which have sold out nearly every year since the inception of the event. The forum aims to elevate the state of agile practices, educating a wide audience from novices to gurus and from technical professionals to business executives.

Who should attend: Agile practitioners, technical professionals, team leaders, managers, executives, and organizational change leaders

ACE! 2020

Twitter: @aceconf
Web: aceconf.com/home
Date: May 20-22
Location: Krakow, Poland
Cost: €320, plus 23% VAT (time-sensitive discounts available)

Organizers say this the largest conference of its kind in Central Europe. In 2020, two conferences are being combined into one two-track forum, with a "Building Better Software" track covering topics such as agile, lean, Scrum, and Kanban, and a "Building Better Products" track for anyone involved in creating products.

Who should attend: Agile, Scrum, and Kanban practitioners; product managers; UI and interaction designers; and UX researchers

Path to Agility Conference

Twitter: @cohaainfo
Web: thepathtoagility.com
Date (2019): May 
Location: Columbus, Ohio, USA
Cost (2019): $175 to $200 (time-sensitive discounts available)

At this conference, both national and regional agile thought leaders provide session content focused on a mix of business, technical, and management topics. Event organizers say that, regardless of whether a conference-goer is well along the agile path or just starting out, this forum will help guide them in the right direction. Session topics include realizing business agility with adaptive management, nitty-gritty practices of agile coaching, and documentation in agile development.

Who should attend: Agile team leaders and coaches, Scrum leaders, product managers, software engineers and architects, developers, and programmers

June

Agile + DevOps West

Twitter: @TechWell / #AgileDevOpsCon
Web: agiledevopswest.techwell.com
Date: June 7-12
Location: Las Vegas, Nevada, USA
Cost: Conference, $1,945 to $2,195; tutorials, $1,545 to $1,795; conference-training packages, $3,545 to $3,995; conference-tutorial-training packages, $3,495 to $3,895; conference-tutorial packages, $2,195 to $2,895 (other packages and time-sensitive discounts available)

In addition to keynote addresses by thought leaders in agile and conference sessions focused on major issues, this conference offers pre-conference training and certification classes, an expo displaying the latest agile software solutions, full and half-day tutorials, and a leadership summit.

Who should attend: Agile teams and leadership, digital transformation teams, product owners, and managers in the areas of automation, development, test, and release

Enterprise Agility Europe

Twitter: @entagility_eu
Web: enterprise-agility.eu
Date: June 8-9
Location: Bilbao, Spain
Cost: €475 to €949, plus VAT (time-sensitive discounts available)

At this conference, Kanban practitioners from a variety of industries—banking, insurance, retail, fashion, construction, petrochemical, and technology—make presentations explaining how they improved their operations using agile. Workshop training sessions on the management and implementation of Kanban are also offered conference-goers, giving them the tools they need for an effective transformation of business processes.

Who should attend: Executive managers, product development and operations directors, program managers, project managers, PMO heads, process improvement leaders, team leaders and team members, and everyone interested in enterprise agility.

Agile Testing Days USA

Twitter: @AgileTDUSA
Web: agiletestingdays.us
Date: June 21-25
Location: Chicago, Illinois, USA
Cost (2019): Tutorials, $875 to $1,395; conference, $2,095 to $3,390 (time-sensitive discounts available)

This conference is aimed at all software engineers and testing professionals. According to the conference organizers, the forum offers a fun platform to connect and network with the agile community through tutorials, workshops, keynotes, talks, and social events.

Who should attend: Anyone involved with software testing as well as software architects, application developers, IT managers, CIOs, CTOs, and software engineers

 

DevOps Enterprise Summit (DOES) London

Twitter: @DOES_EUR / #DOES20
Web: events.itrevolution.com/eur
Date: June 23-25
Location: London, UK
Cost: Full pricing is not yet available, but there is an offer of €850, plus VAT, for those committed to attending ahead of any information on programming being available

DOES is more than just a conference about technical and architectural DevOps practices. The event also covers the methods needed to lead widespread change efforts in large organizations. The goal is to give leaders the tools and practices they need to develop and deploy software faster. Attendees can expect to see speakers from many large companies and also engage in ad hoc discussions within a great community and learning environment.

Who should attend: Leaders of large, complex organizations implementing DevOps or agile principles and practices; developers; IT operations specialists; CxOs; software architects; and systems and network admins

July

Agile2020

Twitter: @AgileAlliance / #Agile2020
Web: agilealliance.org/agile2020
Date: July 20-24
Location: Orlando, Florida, USA
Cost (2019): Agile Alliance members, $1,749 to $2,099; non-members: $2,499 (time-sensitive, academic, and group discounts available)

Agile2020 will mark the 19th year that Agile Alliance has hosted this international conference. The conference sells out quickly, so early reservations are a must. The conference features the most distinguished speakers in the field of agile software development.

Who should attend: Software project managers, product owners, developers, testers, and basically anyone with a significant interest in agile practices

September

Agile Prague Conference

Twitter: @AgilePrague

Web: agileprague.com

Date: September 14-15

Location: Prague, Czech Republic

Cost: CZK8,700 (tutorial-conference packages and time-sensitive discounts available)

More than 30 speakers from around the world will appear at Agile Prague in 2020. The conference, which is conducted in English, is running in two parallel tracks over two days, where you can choose from a variety of talks for managers, Scrum masters, and product owners. In addition to talks, there will be several case-study presentations on agile adoption and practical workshops where attendees can try out agile practices.

Who should attend: Managers, Scrum masters, testers, developers, and product owners

 

DevOps Enterprise Summit (DOES) Las Vegas

Twitter: @DOES_USA / #DOES20
Web: events.itrevolution.com/us
Date: September 22-24
Location: Las Vegas, Nevada, USA
Cost (2019): $1,400 to $1,975 (time-sensitive discounts available)

DOES is more than just a conference about technical and architectural DevOps practices. The event also covers the methods needed to lead widespread change efforts in large organizations. The goal is to give leaders the tools and practices they need to develop and deploy software faster. Attendees can expect to see speakers from many large companies and also engage in ad hoc discussions within a great community and learning environment.

​​​​​​Who should attend: Leaders of large, complex organizations implementing DevOps or agile principles and practices, developers, IT operations specialists, CxOs, software architects, systems and network admins

October

Agile Cambridge

Twitter: @acconf / #agilecam
Web: 2020.agilecambridge.net
Date (2019): September 30-October 3
Location: Cambridge, UK
Cost: £
499 plus 20% VAT (pricing will increase with time)

Agile Cambridge is described by its organizers as "a practical, hands-on agile software development conference" with a goal of letting participants interact with and learn from each other and from industry leaders. The event is focused on agile and lean experience sharing and learning by doing.

Who should attend: Agile practitioners looking for a small conference focused on hands-on training and learning

November

Agile + DevOps East

Twitter: @TechWell / #AgileDevEast
Web: adceast.techwell.com
Date (2019): November 3-8
Location: Orlando, Florida, USA
Cost (2019): Conference, $2,195; two tutorial days, $1,795; packages,
$2,395 to $4,695 (time-sensitive discounts available)

At Agile + DevOps East, newbies have a chance to get up to speed quickly, and experienced pros can take their teams to the next level with hands-on, in-depth workshops. The 2019 conference included an Agile Leadership Summit and a DevSecOps Summit.

Who should attend: Agile teams and leadership, digital transformation teams, automation, developers, testers, release staff, product owners, and managers

Spinnaker Summit

Twitter: @SpinnakerSummit
Web: spinnakersummit.com
Date (2019): November 16-17
Location (2019): San Diego, California, USA
Cost (2019): $250

This conference attracts worldwide users of Spinnaker, an open-source, multi-cloud continuous delivery platform for releasing software changes with high velocity and confidence. Spinnaker was created at Netflix and is used by Google, Armory, Adobe, and others around the globe. It combines a powerful and flexible pipeline management system with integrations to the major cloud providers.

Who should attend: Developers, architects, leaders, and anyone maintaining mission-critical applications

Agile Management Congress

Twitter: @agiliaconf
Web: agilemanagementcongress.com/
Date (2019): November 25
Location (2019): Prague, Czech Republic
Cost (2019): Conference, €1,098, plus VAT (time-sensitive discounts available)

This conference aims to attract management innovators—game changers and innovative leaders from companies, consultancies, and academia, who are trying to build human-centric and alternative organizational arrangements to opposing vertical corporate bureaucracies. It's structured around a series of practical mini workshops, case studies, moderated discussions. and group work with peers. This is not a place to sit, listen, and get entertained, the conference organizers warn. To ensure intensive group learning, only 40 seats are available.

Who should attend: Managers (technical, finance, HR, operations, etc.), owners of companies, and board members interested in agile methodologies

That concludes our list. For a more dense list of Agile Alliance-related workshops and events, check out the Agile Alliance event calendar, too.

Note: We've listed them all, although not all dates, locations, and pricing were available at publication time, especially for those events taking place later in the year. In those cases, we have provided historical information on the event to give you a taste of what to expect, and what you'll get out of attending. And keep checking back. We'll update this guide as more information becomes available.

Review the options and make your choices soon: Prices may vary based on how early you register. Also, remember that hotel and travel costs are generally separate from the conference pricing.

What are your favorite conferences and why? Post your comments below, and let us know if there are any other events or conferences we missed.

Photo courtesy of Colleen Johnson via @scrumhive ​​​​​​.

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