How do we create an incredible conference year after year? The secret is you, our community!
Session selection process
The NTC is community-driven from the start. NTEN staff works with our volunteer committees to shape educational content, develop programming, and make things welcoming and inclusive.
August 30–September 26, 2023
Anyone from the nonprofit technology community is welcome to propose a session for consideration.
October 4–18, 2023
The community and Session Advisory Committee review and favorite proposed sessions.
September 12, 2023
Learn about the session selection process and how to create a strong proposal. Watch a captioned recording of the call and review the slides.
October 19–26, 2023
Using the community input as our guide, we select sessions. If similar sessions have high community support, we may combine them or pick the most supported one.
October 27–November 2, 2023
We identify missing topics and either look for session proposals to fill the gaps or contact potential speakers.
November 9, 2023
We notify session proposers and add sessions to the agenda. If yours isn't accepted, there may be other ways to participate.
Nonprofit Technology Conference
March 13–15, 2024
Join us in Portland, Oregon, or attend virtually — whichever is right for you.
We invite proposals in six session categories. You may use an artificial intelligence tool for brainstorming but do not submit a proposal written by AI.
To inspire your brainstorming, check out the topics our Session Advisory Committee suggests based on their practitioner knowledge and NTC experience. These are a jumping-off point, not a limit. Put your best proposal forward, even if the topic is different than what's suggested.
Address the inequities that are created or exacerbated by technology. You might feature deep reflections on equity and social justice, highlight programs or practices shown to alleviate inequity, or share analysis of existing and proposed policy changes.
Suggested digital inclusion topics
- Train nonprofit staff about broadband access for K-12 students
- Campaigns to influence legislation and Federal Communications Commission policy
- Engage learners using trauma-informed practices
- Resources and skills building for digital navigation
- Engage seniors in the digital space
- Support literacy with digital literacy
- Trauma stewardship: Caring for those who care for others
- State digital equity and BEAD program showcase
- Engage community partners and parent organizations in digital inclusion projects
- Human-centered digital inclusion projects
- Sustainability of digital inclusion programs
- Understand assistive technology
- How to know how your clients are accessing your materials
- Community-centric fundraising and digital inclusion strategies
- People-first approaches to digital campaigns
- Virtual spaces, POC faces: How to make the virtual experience good for everyone
- An integrated approach to digital inclusion strategies across fundraising and communications
- Why racial equity should continue to be the number one goal of digital inclusion
Help participants learn about development, grantseeking, and fundraising topics. You might cover fundraising tech that works (and doesn't), evaluating and selecting fundraising tools and databases, best practices for using fundraising technology, or trends and new ideas.
Suggested fundraising topics
- Artificial intelligence for fundraising: Trends, do's and don’ts, ethics, and other considerations
- Automate donor engagement with artificial intelligence: Appeals, donor letters, grant narratives, and more
- Fundraising tech ethics: Chatbots, personalized communications, and predictive analytics
- Donor-advised fund policies and procedures
- Segment your data for solicitations: A little goes a long way
- Why it is important to think about reporting while planning your fundraising activity
- Stewardship strategies for new donors and for retaining donors
- The three-legged stool of constituent relationship management success — finding the right balance of CRM cost, features, and complexity
- Corporate giving: Mythical white whale or a real funding source?
- Keys to success when managing a constituent relationship management migration while fundraising
- Planned giving: How to tactfully ask your donors to consider your organization in their will
- Creative ways to contact your donors in between asks so they're not only hearing from you when you need money
- Pitch increased investment in paid digital ads that ask for donations when the return isn’t immediate
- How to use automation to thank your donors after every gift without losing the personal touch
- How to make flexible giving options work, such as digital wallets, contactless giving, text-to-give, and more
- How to implement a successful membership-giving program
- How to diversify fundraising with investment-based giving: a successful case study
- Gaming for good: Engage gamers for your cause
- Building a sustainer program from scratch
- What form of texting to use? The pros and cons of broadcast and person-to-person
- Develop cohort marketing plans to achieve fundraising goals
- Challenges with attribution in multi-channel fundraising
- How a co-op can support your digital fundraising and help you tap donors you couldn't find elsewhere
- Improvements you can make to your website to drive more donations
- How to appeal to the different generations/generational giving
- How new-to-giving donors (pandemic donors) are different and why organizations should want more of them
Examine the role technology has in our organizations. What frameworks can help participants make smart decisions and manage change toward the organization’s vision? Participants will be in or aspiring to leadership roles, and ready to grapple with challenges.
Suggested leadership topics
- Create and implement organizational policies for artificial intelligence use
- Everyone can be a cyber security expert: Fostering a culture of good security practices at every level of your org
- Mentoring mentors: Foster leadership and mentoring skills at all staff levels
- Crisis response: Lead challenging work in a divisive political climate
- How to have a great retreat and some ideas for activities that build teams and help craft visions
- Build effective systems to get and incorporate employee feedback to improve work and make team members feel heard
- Leading in the time of change: Founder departures, program shifts, board growth, and more
- Switching to co-CEOs case study: New trend or passing phase?
- Showing up at work when life is stressful: Panel of people who are leading while dealing with a personal situation, such as being a parent, caregiver, or disabled
- Leading over generations: Meet the needs of staff when the staff demographic is complex
- The balancing act between in-person and remote teams: How to give each group equal priority for organizational success
- Digital-first leadership: What is it?
- Case study: Leading to get support for big technology improvements (such as implementing a new donor database
- Pay it forward: How to mentor and lead for personal, future, and organizational success
- Lead your board and support your team to use and implement the right technology
- Lead from where you are: Develop and demonstrate leadership at all organizational levels
- When leadership means stepping away
- Harness and sell your neurodivergent leadership superpowers
- Practical strategies for fostering professional and organizational growth for individuals from generational poverty
- Which employee benefits really matter for recruitment and retention
- Strategic vision: Navigate digital transformation
- Empower tech talent and teams: building resilient tech teams amidst change
- Cultivate values-driven tech team culture while leading digital change projects
- Lead with integrity, adaptability, and by example: Connect org values with tech choices
- Decisive leadership in times of change or challenging times
- Navigate tough choices when resources and information are limited
- Lead a successful change management process with high user adoption
- Leverage technology for organizational advantage and mission attainment while meeting less tech-fluent staff and stakeholders where they are
- Reimagine leadership where operations (information technology, finance, human resources, and so on) are integral to organizational strategy and planning, not just assets for execution
- Navigate the challenge of soliciting and considering feedback from staff and stakeholders while making timely decisions
Spread the word about nonprofit programs and strengthen community relationships. Help participants learn about successful (and failed) ways to integrate new communications technologies and tactics through tangible guidance and inspiration.
Suggested communications topics
- Using ChatGPT to write better, faster communications
- Website accessibility (need intro and deep dive sessions)
- Survive and thrive: Successful social media when the algorithms work against small nonprofits
- Consultant or in-house: Assess your internal strengths and capacities before hiring an expert
- How to write a simple marketing plan for your organization
- What is content marketing, and how can you effectively use it?
- The state of social media: Panel discussion from real nonprofits on where they stand with new platforms, old platforms, and rebrands
- Social media work is misunderstood; here's how to educate on what it entails.
- Social media marketing broken down by platform and goals
- Grow your audience and engagement on social without buying followers
- Threads, Bluesky, and more: Which emerging platforms are right for your organization?
- Social media, search engine optimization, and content convergence
- Implementing project management organization-wide when it started with marketing
- Mythbusting around systems and software that seem to be cost-prohibitive
- Self-paced learning resources for staying on top of communications trends and nonprofit news
- Enable and scale authentic relationships with supporter-generated video
- Create engaging video content on a budget
- Get started with short-form videos: TikTok, Reels, YouTube Shorts, and more
- Tackle serious topics without being formal in your digital communications
- Do more with less: Successful social media and marketing campaigns with little to no budget.
- Data-driven approaches to reaching a younger, more diverse audience
- Nonprofit diplomacy: Build relationships and manage conflict between fundraising and communications teams
- Navigate a cookie-less world with a first-party data strategy
- Demystifying data science for marketers: What it is, what it's not, and how it can help you build deeper relationships with supporters
Share IT resources and best practices with participants, especially those who manage and support tech infrastructure. Participants will want to share success stories and challenges, voice concerns, and hear wisdom from one another, no matter how they arrived at their roles.
Suggested IT topics
- Fundamental software skills various nonprofit staff should have
- Pros and cons of a bring your own device policy
- Migrating donor management systems: Critical factors pre- and post-migration
- Tech training audits and schedules for big and small nonprofit shops
- Intermediate to advanced skills advancement service professionals need to have and how to acquire or improve them
- Adopting new software: Getting buy-in, training, and integration
- Working with artificial intelligence
- Data storage: Cloud versus on-premise, capacity, cost, security
- Digital security and cyber ransomware
- New trends in technology: Quantum computing
- Understanding cryptocurrency
Explore how technology can increase the efficiency and effectiveness of people who are on the front lines serving their communities. Introduce these participants to cutting-edge applications or methodologies, and share how to use them successfully.
Suggested program topics
- Is there a role for artificial intelligence in project and program management?
- Build inclusive and welcoming project or work culture
- Move from a fundraising model to a revenue-generating model
- Data-driven decision-making: Frameworks and case studies
- Demystifying the five-year budget and roadmap
- Tech-enabled community engagement: Strategies, platforms, and tools for fostering a sense of community, collaboration, and feedback gathering in digital spaces
- Accessible and inclusive program delivery with assistive technology
- Design digital content that accommodates diverse needs.
- Innovative partnerships: Tech companies and nonprofits
- Create program surveys using online tools
- Use technology to communicate effectively with teams
- Pros and cons of popular project management software
- Protecting sensitive data: Best practices for reducing cyberattacks
- Ethics, privacy, and protecting data
- Real talk from nonprofit peers on current challenges and opportunities with constituent data systems and related tech stack
- Data and systems readiness for artificial intelligence: Accurate data, optimized practices, and Big Data
- Artificial intelligence 101: What AI is, how to leverage it, and ways to evaluate its effectiveness.
- Community management: Developments, opportunities, and challenges in our new hybrid world
- Communications strategies for programs: How teams can work together to scope and develop communications strategies and work that supports programs
- Tools for on-site volunteer management and engagement
- Reach younger audiences through programs
- Tools for reviewing the reach of past programs to inform new program development
- Empower staff to manage volunteers within their projects
- Committee management: Roles for volunteers in event planning
You may wait to hear if your session is selected before recruiting additional speakers.
One to two speakers
Provide an energizing, fast-paced opportunity for participants to hear expertise on a specific topic. Got a hot take about meeting facilitation? A must-do list for project managers? Top tips for email conversion? Propose a tight session focused on practical application and tangible takeaways.
Two to four speakers from at least two organizations, one of which must be a nonprofit
Think beyond the panel to better engage participants and send them off with new ways to approach their work. Speakers determine the format and distribution of time. They may collaborate on a single experience or divide the time on different perspectives.
One to three speakers
Help participants think through the big questions and organizing principles for successfully kicking off a significant project. Build the workshop around a template (strategy guide, project plan, pitch, or other tool) so people can play along. There should be high engagement between speakers and participants.