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Each year more and more events crop up on the fringes of the annual CIPD conference. This year is looking like the fullest ‘fringe’ offering to date.

So what do we mean by fringe? Well, fringe events tend to occur outside of the main venue and tend to feel, and in many cases are, less official - quite literally occurring on the fringe. That said, this year the CIPD has put together a range of events that span the formal and informal. They are all listed here and you can also register for them too.

So, why attend a fringe event? There are many reasons to visit the fringe. They include:

  1. They are free to attend. You get to be a part of the event but without paying for it. What’s not to like about that?
  2. They are less formal - that means the emphasis is more on conversation and participation. So, great for meeting peers and sharing ideas. And no need to be suited and booted.
  3. Their content is more emergent - that means your input can help shape the event. That’s not something you get to do in more formal conference sessions.
  4. Ideas that might seem more ‘out there’ can be explored and discussed. What starts on the fringe might become a part of the conference in future.
  5. The fringe is a place where anyone can set up a relevant event. That means the fringe is a place for bringing together new ideas with people who want to explore them. This is about innovation and creativity. You get to experience it first. This year, for example, is the first LGBT fringe event.
  6. They are fun - yes, you also get to enjoy yourself whilst learning and meeting new people.

You will need to visit the CIPD events page to book your place on the following events.

LGBT networking event, 3 November, 21:30–23:30, Lock 91 - Deansgate Locks

The first LGBT networking fringe event at the Annual Conference & Exhibition 2015.

Meet to Eat, 4 November 20:00,  various restaurants

The CIPD has reserved tables at a selection of restaurants in Manchester so you can meet other delegates over dinner.

The Art of Conversation and Networking, 4 November, 18:45-20:00, Epernay Bar

Meet other HR professionals and have a drink in a more relaxed and social setting.

Revolucion de Cuba, 4 November, 20:00 onwards 

Eat, drink and enjoy the salsa dancing.

HR Unscrambled breakfast briefing, 5 November, 08:00-09:15, Charter Foyer, Manchester Central

An event to explore how to make work and working lives better.

Managing Cancer in the Workplace, 5 November, 07:45 (for an 08:00 start) Manchester Central

Short case studies on the impact of cancer in the workplace for employees and employers, and highlight legal requirements, obligations and successful solutions.

Welfare Reform – what does it mean for HR?, 5 November, 13:15–14:00, Cobden 3–4

The Welfare Minister Lord Freud is in conversation with Peter Cheese.

As well as the fringe events organised by the CIPD there are also two more events. They are:

Street Wisdom, 4 November, 14.30, Manchester Central

Phil Wilcox will lead a group of HR professionals through the streets of Manchester to find answers to the questions and challenges they face.

Sign up here

L&D Connect Tweet-up, 4 November,  18:00 to 21:00

A gathering of L&D professionals. You don’t need to be on Twitter to be there - just an interest in L&D and what’s come out of the conference on the subject.

Sign up here

The nature of the conference fringe means that new events could well pop up.

If they do, please let us know!

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  • Thanks for that run through the fringe events Mike. I really like the idea of the Street Wisdom session that Phil is leading - good luck Phil


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