Facilitator Guide

The 3 Principles: Participatory, Accessible, Inclusive

MozFest attendees in session with raised hands

At Mozilla Festival, we celebrate the diversity of our global audience, embracing everyone's unique experiences and perspectives. We know that transformative impact requires many people, from many places and spaces, to come together. Our goal is to help you craft sessions that encourage open dialogue and collaboration, welcoming contributions from all. Your session is an opportunity to invite a community to join you on your journey, and the following three principles will help you do so.

Our core facilitation principles at Mozilla Festival are: Participation, Accessibility, and Inclusivity. These principles uplift our dedication to interactive and engaging sessions, distinguishing us from traditional conferences. Here, facilitation revolves around collective creativity, with facilitators actively engaging their audience to co-create, reflect shared values, and pursue common goals.

As an open and welcoming event, Mozilla Festival offers the following advice to ensure sessions are participatory, inclusive, and accessible:


Hosting interactive experiences for co-creation and togetherness.

For a participatory session, consider the following:

  • How do you want participant interaction to feel and flow?
  • Is your session interactive, fun, provocative and otherwise engaging for participants?
  • Does it allow different people with different perspectives to contribute to the conversation?
  • What do you want to learn from participants?

4 Tips to Boost Participation:

  • Extend a warm welcome and get to know participants by planning time for introductions and encouraging them to interact from the beginning of the session.
  • Introduce your expertise mid-session to maintain interest, aiming for short, impactful presentations. Be mindful of giving others space to share and participate.
  • Offer different ways to participate to make it easy for everyone for people to get involved.
  • Conclude with clear next steps and share how participants can learn more about the session topic, find additional resources, and stay engaged with the work.

Creating intentional spaces that are meaningful, useful and usable by as many people as possible.

To make your session more accessible, consider the following:

  • How might your planned activities leave some people out?
  • Is my session easy to find, attend, and understand?
  • Can individuals with disabilities and neurodiverse participants fully engage?
  • How can I accommodate different learning styles into my session?
  • Are there clear instructions or support I can provide for using any session technology, especially for first-time users?

4 Tips for Accessibility:

  • Use a short, clear title and description that shares what your session is about.
  • Share materials in advance in an accessible format such as, high-contrast black white text files instead of PDF’s.
  • Make resources available post-session for those who could not attend or want to read in their own time.
  • Consider the diverse needs of potential participants to ensure different people who might participate in your session are accommodated.

Inviting diverse perspectives for shared understanding and collective power.

To make your session more inclusive, consider the following:

  • Consider the audience your session is most relevant for - how does the design of your session invite their participation?
  • Can people participate and express themselves safely without fear?
  • Did you avoid activities that show bias or favor one kind of person and preference over others?

4 Tips for Inclusivity:

  • Opt for universal or cross-cultural references to ensure broad understanding.
  • Provide content warnings and safe space guidelines at the beginning of your session. This helps prepare participants for sensitive content and reinforces the session as a safe space for all.
  • Encourage varied forms of expression by allowing participants to share their thoughts through different mediums (e.g., writing, speaking, visual art). By acknowledging different comfort levels and communication styles, you will enrich the experience and output of people attending your session.
  • Strive for inclusive language by choosing terms like “folks”, “everyone”, or “all” instead of gendered greetings like, “guys”, “ladies and gentlemen” or “global majority” instead of “minority groups” or “the global south”).

Language Inclusivity

Effective communication and collaboration often depend on language. Some ideas are more easily expressed in certain languages so it's vital to embrace multilingualism with empathy and flexibility.

Mozilla Festival is committed to language inclusivity, offering specialized support and encouraging facilitators to explore how you can facilitate language inclusivity beyond translation. Whether through visual aids or interactive methods, please aim to make your session accessible to speakers of various languages whenever possible.

I love that the MozFest community connects me to like-minded people all over the world! It’s so empowering to meet people who live a dozen timezones away, who share my passion for making things better for everyone, and who become my friends and colleagues.

Nate Angell

MozFest 2024 Facilitator, MozFest Virtual Gathering Facilitator