Several small groups brainstorm solutions to a problem, facilitated by ‘recorders’ who, at a given time signal, move to new groups to continue the process there. After several iterations, recorders pool and present their ideas.
The word charrette is French for cart. Allegedly, a cart would come to collect the scale models produced by architecture students at the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris in the nineteenth century. The students, working hard at the last minute so that they did not miss the deadline as the cart arrived, were said to be working en charrette.