Room 2

11:40 - 12:40 (UTC+01)

Talk (60 min)

Autonomy, is that what we really want?

There has been a focus on autonomy in information technology; From autonomy in code, autonomy while coding, autonomous systems with microservices to autonomous high-performing teams. When you read Daniel Pink's research in the book Drive, it makes sense; autonomy is one of the three things that motivate us; it is the ability of the person to make his or her own decisions. However, often autonomy can lead to isolation and disconnect from the rest of the code, team, or organisation. So how can we balance the individual needs while staying connected to the team/organisation to stay autonomous? In this talk, we will go through all the levels we deal with in IT, from code to organisation collaboration. We will go into autonomy at each level and explain how we often confuse autonomy with individual needs. These individual needs can turn into isolation and disconnect from the code, team and organisation. Through examples, we will show how our compulsiveness towards autonomy gives us both downsides of being isolated and coupled in the code, within the team and organisation. You will leave the talk knowing how polarity management can help you manage this paradox between the individual and the team/organisation and get the benefits from the whole and the individual to be balanced.

Software Design
Work skills

Kenny Baas-Schwegler

A lot of knowledge is lost when designing and building software — lost because of hand-overs in a telephone game, confusing communication by not having a shared language, discussing complexity without visualisation and by not leveraging the full potential and wisdom of the diversity of the people. That lost knowledge while creating software impacts the sustainability, quality and value of the software product. Kenny Baas-Schwegler is a socio-technical architect. He blends IT approaches like Domain-Driven Design and Continuous Delivery and facilitates change through using visual collaboration practices, the Cynefin framework and Deep Democracy. Kenny empowers and collaboratively enables organisations, teams and groups of people in designing and building sustainable quality software products.

One of Kenny's core principles is sharing knowledge. He does that by writing a blog on his website and helping curate the Leanpub book visual collaboration tool. Besides writing, he also shares experience in the Domain-Driven Design community as an organiser of Virtual Domain-Driven Design ( and Domain Driven Design Nederland. He enjoys being a public speaker by giving talks and hands-on workshops at conferences and meetups.

Evelyn Van Kelle

Evelyn van Kelle is a strategic software delivery consultant, with experience in coaching, advising and guiding organisations and teams in designing socio-technical systems. Her Master’s degree in social sciences brings new and valuable perspectives when it comes to optimizing both delivery- and team processes.

Being a firm believer of context shaping meaning, she is focused on understanding company- and team culture before anything else. Finding the actual problem to solve and adding business value are starting points in her work. Evelyn is convinced that we need a shared sense of reality including shared values, goals and language in order to perform best as a team. She is curious, driven and pragmatic. “Continuous improvement is better than delayed perfection” describes her line of reasoning.

Besides her daily work, she has a predilection for books and linguistics, and highly appreciates good food.