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INCOSE Systems Exchange CaféINCOSE-virtual1

The Systems Exchange Café is a virtual meeting run on Zoom.  It is based on the idea of a “book club”, where attendees come to meeting to discuss a book they agreed to read the time before.  In the meeting they raise points raised in the book, debate the issues, and select a book for next time.


In the Systems Exchange café the idea is to discuss an idea related to systems – maybe a topic, a book chapter, a paper, a journal article or a topic in the news.  A potential reading list will be prepared (so if a topic is chosen, some papers, articles, or books will have been suggested). 
At the café meeting the topic will be discussed by those attending, and the conversation will go wherever the attendees take it. So it is not like a “Panel discussion” as there are no presentations or position statements to launch.  Rather it’s like the conversation in a bar or a café when a group of Systems people meet and discuss systems.

INCOSE started three cafés in June 2020 at three different time slots, so anyone in the world can hopefully find a convenient time slot to join.  After the first meeting (or “opening”) the cafés have diverged in terms of topics, so see the individual Café pages for the course of the conversations.  Initially each café meets once every two weeks for 90 minutes, but the attendees could adjust that as they want as the series proceeds.

The café is open to all (not just INCOSE members) and is to allow those curious about Systems to have an opportunity to discuss systems issues.  It is not being recorded, so there is no formal “output” or record from the meetings (apart from the next topic!).  If separate follow-up discussions (and even articles or papers) evolve, initiated by the café between sub-sets of attendees then that is a desirable consequence.  

The topic for the first session of each of the 3 cafes started with the Systems Engineering and System Definitions produced by the INCOSE Fellows that can be found in the INCOSE Store.  A detailed overview is found here.  You may also like to look at and then debate other references and definitions of Systems Engineering and related areas. 
The discussion can go in whatever direction the attendees take it, and so to join the discussion it is suggested you view the pages for each Café and consider what that topic means practically to your work, your organization and your domain.

It is hoped this will be a useful ongoing discussion, and also relevant to those not members of INCOSE but curious about Systems and Engineering. 

To register for one of these Café series, please select from the three links below.
This will be a hosted Café using Zoom for the meeting, and we ask you to review these guidelines:

  • The café is open to the public (not just INCOSE members)
  • The discussion will not be recorded
  • The conversation and the topics for discussion set and go in whatever direction the attendees want
  • Debate and exchange of opinions is the purpose of the discussion, but it is expected
  • Attendees will treat the opinions of others with respect
  • Please do not dominate the meeting, but let all have a say
  • The use of the chat function in Zoom is encouraged, and if this starts further contact / discussion (separately) between attendees then that is a desirable result 
Each Café meets every two weeks, and are on different days and an different times from each other. Click the links below to see the dates and times for each Café, and select the one(s) that fit your schedule. Note that each is based in a particular time zone at a set time. The corresponding time in other time zones will vary with the season. Participants from anywhere are welcome at any Café. 

Fir Tree Café:
 Wednesday 9:00 am Japan       Convert to my time zone    Register

Oak Tree Café: Wednesday 8:00 am UK          Convert to my time zone    Register

Maple Tree Café:
 Friday 8:00 am US Pacific    Convert to my time zone     Register

Once registered you will receive a Zoom invitation to join the selected Café on the next scheduled date, and to continue to participate every two weeks thereafter. Your registration information is only used for these Café events, and will not be shared or used for any other purposes, in accordance with the INCOSE Privacy Policy.