I have found these 4 principles from Open Space wonderfully summarizing some rp experience fro me:
Open Space Principles
1. Whoever comes is the right people.
2. Whatever happens is the only thing that could have happened.
3. When it starts is the right time.
4. When it's over it's over and when it's not over it's not over.
Wiki about OpenSpace:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Open_Space_Technology