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OpenAgile - the open learning system for agile value delivery

Welcome to the OpenAgile Community Wiki!

OpenAgile is an open learning system designed to help individuals, teams, and organizations build capacity for rapidly delivering value to their stakeholders. The principles and practices are designed to be broadly applicable to many different types of work. Anyone doing work that needs to be organized, effective, and high-quality can use OpenAgile. And because OpenAgile is open source, anyone is free (both libre and gratis) to learn about it, use it, and then ideally contribute back to it.

The official version of OpenAgile is published on We recommend that you start by reading The OpenAgile Primer. Should you wish to certify that you have any of the capacities enshrined within the OpenAgile system, you can apply for recognition by the OpenAgile Institute. Visit the official page for the OpenAgile Capacity-Building Program to learn more.

As this is a wiki, contribution is open to anyone who wishes to help out. The types of contributions we are looking for include:

  • case studies of people using agile approaches in various industries or unusual situations
  • examples of other agile methods such as Scrum or Extreme Programming or Lean and how they have been adapted to a specific situation
  • case studies of people using OpenAgile directly and the challenges and benefits encountered
  • links and references to other sites, articles, studies, and data that provide support or challenge aspects of the OpenAgile system
  • edits or additions or opinions about the material that is already here

If you are interested in contributing to the wiki, we strongly recommend connecting with our OpenAgile Champions, a group of knowledgeable and experienced practitioners of OpenAgile who have arisen to champion OpenAgile in many different fields of endeavor. You can find more information at and sign up for the OpenAgile Champions Google group at


Interesting News and Links

Agile Learning Labs in San Mateo, California is holding a two hour intro to OpenAgile:

David Parker did an Open Space session on OpenAgile at the Agile Open conference in San Francisco, California:

Very good summary of Agility and the need for it from the US Department of Defense: - Highly Recommended!!!

List of links to stories about the use of Scrum in non-profits and other non-software environments:

Comparison of OpenAgile and Scrum:

Science and Scrum:

Agile Law Community:

Ontario Ministry of the Attorney General Not-for-Profit Incorporator's Handbook:

History of OpenAgile

OpenAgile started as an idea based on the practice of Mishkin Berteig, an agile coach. In 2004, Mishkin was working with agile methods such as Extreme Programming and Scrum in corporate software development environments. While doing this work, he saw the possibility of extending agile methods beyond software, and the value of applying it to other types of work such as project management, operations, sales, R&D, etc. Mishkin searched for and found the general principles related to teamwork, effective feedback processes, and organizational development. At the time, Mishkin referred to this application of agile methods beyond software as "Agile Work".

Garry Berteig, the father of Mishkin, was teaching art and media at Keyano College in Alberta, Canada. Over the course of twenty years of helping students to become more sophisticated learners, he developed the Learning Circle, a model to help his students learn more effectively. The Learning Circle, which is explored in the OpenAgile Primer, was refined through constant application in this environment. (See for more examples of cyclical learning models.)

In January of 2005, Garry invited Mishkin to do a presentation to his media class about agile methods. In the course of the two-hour presentation, Mishkin described the framework of short cycles of work that deliver results and getting feedback in every cycle. Garry then asked his students to use this model on a long documentary film project (see for a short description). This documentary project used this agile approach to work and concluded successfully. Mishkin and Garry then started collaborating to see how to connect the work they were doing with agile and the Learning Circle.

In fall of 2007, Mishkin and Garry finished making a systematic mapping of the Learning Circle with an agile approach. At around the same time, in a conversation with another individual, Mishkin became convinced that this new model of working needed to be shared and in particular, shared in a collaborative way, like an open-source software project. Thus, the name OpenAgile was born. “Open” for “Open Source” - we hope that people around the world will contribute to further developing the OpenAgile method.

In the intervening years since the documentary project, OpenAgile has been used in a number of different environments including sales teams, software development, social innovation, and in the operation of the Berteig Consulting business.

In the spring of 2010, Mishkin and members of the Berteig Consulting team formed a non-profit organization called the OpenAgile Institute to guide the future growth of OpenAgile.

OpenAgile Method Overview

OpenAgile includes three foundations, a process, roles, and artifacts that can be applied to many different types of work.

OpenAgile Primer

A "primer" is an introductory text, like a text book, that contains elementary principles. In this case, the OpenAgile Primer contains basic concepts and practices of OpenAgile. The official version of the OpenAgile Primer, knowledge of which is a requirement of OpenAgile certification, is published by the OpenAgile Institute at

Future updates to the official version of the Primer are influenced by the improvements contributed on this wiki. You are welcome to join us: OpenAgile Primer

Purpose of OpenAgile

OpenAgile aims to build capacity in individuals and organizations to contribute to the betterment of society.

What motivates us to do this is our fundamental conviction that humanity is one living system and that the interests, development and prosperity of individuals, groups and organizations must become organically aligned with the advancement of society and the prosperity of humanity as a whole.

As OpenAgile grows, we learn more about the coherence and integrity to which we aspire. You are welcome to be a part of that. Indeed, you may wish to participate directly by adding to our efforts to develop a Primer on the Purpose of OpenAgile or by sharing your experiences in the Primer on Getting Started with OpenAgile.

OpenAgile Process

OpenAgile is an extremely simple framework that is based on the foundations of Truthfulness, Consultative Decision-Making and the Learning Circle. The processes in OpenAgile are designed to help individuals, teams, and organizations consistently apply the foundations and effectively deliver valuable results. The official Process, which makes up a component of OpenAgile certification, is published on

Advances to our understanding of the OpenAgile Process are contributed here Process Overview. We are also developing a future version of the Primer on the OpenAgile Process. You are welcome to contribute.

Assessment Tools

One way to learn OpenAgile, and to improve on your use of it, is to use our basic Assessment tool for OpenAgile Team Assessment. We will also be creating an OpenAgile Individual Assessment and OpenAgile Community Assessment. These tools should not be used for performance evaluations.

OpenAgile Roles

There is only one Required Role in the OpenAgile method, that of the Team Member. There are also several paths of service that are part of OpenAgile: Process Facilitation, Growth Facilitation, Mentoring, Tutoring, Catalyst. There may also be other people involved outside of these roles in the general category of Stakeholders. Here is a comparison chart of the skills for the Paths of Service. Finally, a Master of OpenAgile has shown mastery of OpenAgile.

You are welcome to help us advance our understanding of any the OpenAgile Roles or paths of service. You may also like to join us in our efforts to update the Primer on the Participants of OpenAgile.

OpenAgile Artifacts

OpenAgile has four Required Artifacts: the Goal Statement, the Cycle Plan, the Prioritized Value Drivers and the Delivered Value.

OpenAgile Benefits

Early Learning, Improved ROI, Satisfied Stakeholders, Participant Satisfaction, Responsiveness to Change, Reduction of excessive bureaucracy and chaos

Stories about OpenAgile

Success Stories, Failure Stories, Industry Stories (ex. Natural Resources, Health Care, Information Technology, Business Management), and Other Stories.

see: Agile Stories

The above link allows anyone to create an account and submit a story. Stories do not need to be about OpenAgile specifically, but rather can be about any use of agile methods outside of their traditional use in software development. The stories may be as short as a few sentences to say something to the effect of "We're using agile to run our household. We have daily sprints and our planning is combined with our demo and retrospective." It is also acceptable to provide a link to a blog article where the story is told more completely elsewhere.

OpenAgile Glossary

The Glossary contains a list of terms and definitions used in the OpenAgile Primer

OpenAgile Capacity-Building Program

The OpenAgile Capacity-Building Program is designed with a few simple goals in mind. The Capacity-Building Program encompasses individuals, teams and communities/organizations as they are building capacity to use the OpenAgile system. We also recognize industry-specific domains. The program is used to:

1) Recognize individuals, teams and communities/organizations who have demonstrated capacity in their application of the OpenAgile system.

2) Create the framework of capacity-building related to the principles and practices of OpenAgile.

3) Embody the principles of OpenAgile in the Capacity-Building Program itself

OpenAgile and other Work Methods

Agile Methods

Scrum, Extreme Programming, Lean Software Development, Lean Manufacturing, Dynamic Systems Development Method (DSDM), Agile Unified Process, Feature Driven Development (FDD), Crystal Clear, Getting Things Done, Pomodoro Technique.

Personal Productivity

Getting Things Done, Seven Habits, Pomodoro.

Team Productivity

Core protocols, wisdom of teams.

Project Management

PMBoK, Prince2

Other Process Regulatory Frameworks


How to Use the Wiki

Consult the User's Guide for information on using the wiki software.

Note: wiki software was upgraded in order to prevent spam. Please let us know if you find any Defects.

Licensing and Copyright Information

This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License. To view a copy of this license, visit [1] or send a letter to Creative Commons, 171 Second Street, Suite 300, San Francisco, California, 94105, USA.

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