- The conference committee is made up volunteer members who represent local hosts, institutions, individuals from sponsoring organizations, and at least one member of the USSEE board who serves as a liaison between the committee and board.
- As the new conference committee is being formed, a conference call or communication with the previous board is strongly recommended to exchange ideas, recommendations, and key documents.
Committee Chair (or Co-Chairs)
- Dedicated individuals willing to put forth the time and effort needed to pull off the conference, who can lead and work effectively with the committee, and who can work through the many problems that inevitably arise.
- Point person(s) for email management and overall correspondence.
- Define the role(s) and structure of the conference committee.
- Maintain communication with the USSEE Board liaison.
- Progress reports are helpful to catch everyone up on the state of different planning activities.
Venue, Logistics and Accommodations Sub-Committee
- Work directly with conference Hosts (See Conference Site and Venue section)
- Assign a point person for spearheading fundraising efforts, preferably someone with experience in this area. The USSEE Board of Directors and Executive Directors will assist as needed with fundraising efforts.
- Helpful to reach out to local potential sponsors as well as identify agencies and organizations we wish to partner with on a larger level.
- Manage conference publicity including the website and advertising.
- Plan events and activities.
- Coordinate on-site volunteers for the conference.
- Arrange registration and general support staff.
Scientific Program Sub-Committee
- Review and accept abstracts.
- Organize the abstracts into logical groupings to develop the program and schedule conference sessions.
- Identify and invite plenary speakers.
Timeline of Priority Tasks Prior to and Post-Conference
1 Year Prior
- Decide on and book a venue.
- Recruit a conference committee, which includes one member of the USSEE Board of Directors.
- The Scientific sub-committee is responsible for abstract review and scientific program coordination.
- The Logistics sub-committee is responsible for the publicity, fundraising, and on-site organization.
- It is recommended that one point person is assigned to oversee fundraising.
- Board of Directors approves the conference theme.
9 Months Prior
- Set the theme, begin searching for appropriate keynote speakers and activities.
- Create a conference budget.
- Begin fundraising and soliciting co-sponsors. This will be an ongoing process, but requires an early start.
- Identify housing and book accommodations.
- Create conference website.
- Email announcement to USSEE and ISEE membership. This should include venue, general conference information, and topics for abstract submission before an official call.
6 Months Prior
- Publicize the conference.
- Call for abstracts including Symposia, Workshops, and Discussion Groups.
- USSEE Board solicits general membership for nominees for the Herman Daly Award and student membership for nominees for the Bernardo Aguilar Award. The Board selects the Daly award winner and students select the Aguilar award winner, and the board invites the winners to the conference.
- Announce Call for abstracts, workshops, discussion groups, and symposia: Include link to conference website, contact information, place, and overview of conference theme and goals.
- Begin planning for conference events and activities, including potential off-site trips.
3 Months Prior
- Review and accept abstracts, email accepted presenters.
- Include requirements for poster presentations with emails about accepted abstracts.
- Develop the schedule and program, post to website and update as needed.
- Create an online database of accepted abstracts.
- Circulate maps and other information regarding venue and accommodations.
2 Months Prior
- Create local team of volunteers (likely students from Universities near the venue) to assist during the conference.
- Publicize with press releases.
- Deal with details (changes, cancellations, visas, etc.).
- Confirm volunteers and program details.
Run the Conference!
- Organize an edited volume of selected conference proceedings (If desired).
- Organizing committee should host a de-briefing meeting 1 and 3 months following the conference:
- Key debriefing items include obvious ones (i.e., how did the final budget play out) and more strategic ones (i.e., outcomes from the members’ meeting, lessons learned, strategic direction gained).
- Review comments and feedback from attendants to share with the next Conference Organizing Committee.
- Provide planning documentation, attendee lists, and other information associated with the conference to the Board of Directors for archiving.
To obtain a full conference planning document, which outlines detailed expectations of the host and conference planning committee, please email Whitney Lash-Marshall at firstname.lastname@example.org.