We are pleased to issue this call for symposia proposals for the Second Joint Congress on Evolutionary Biology, which will take place in Montpellier, France in 2018.
Following the traditional format of ESEB conferences, all contributed talks and posters will be submitted to specific symposia and selected on the basis of their abstract by symposium organizers. We will have many concurrent sessions each day, many symposia, and accordingly many contributed talks (about 1000 in total). It is thus very important that we receive abundant, high quality, exciting proposals for symposia on very diverse topics. We therefore strongly encourage members of all societies to propose symposia. Please advertise this call very broadly to your colleagues.
The deadline for symposia proposal is July 1st, 2017.
Proposals will be evaluated by the Scientific Committee and the selected list will be communicated in the Fall 2017. Symposia proposals addressing overlapping subjects may be requested to fuse. The Scientific Committee may also solicit the organization of additional symposia if there are gaps in the coverage of important fields in Evolutionary Biology. We will aim for a very diverse set of symposia covering as many areas of research in Evolution as possible, including emerging questions.
The call for contributed talks will then open in November, 2017 and close in January, 2018. Those wishing to present (talk or poster) will submit a single abstract directly to one or two symposia in which their research fits. Symposium organizers will be in charge of evaluating the abstracts submitted to their symposium and proposing which should be presented as an oral communication, as a poster, or should be declined. Their recommendations will then be reviewed and approved by the Scientific Committee. We will expect symposium organizers to be very reactive at this stage, as final decisions for submitting authors will need to be communicated by the end of February 2018 (i.e. before registration opens).
We expect symposium organizers to be very attentive to gender balance in their session, to be present during the entire conference, and to chair their session. Very popular symposia receiving many abstract submissions may be allocated more time than others.
Symposium organizers will invite one speaker to introduce their session and set the scene of their thematic symposium. The congress will cover the costs of registration for this invited speaker. Because we wish to have many symposia and many contributed talks, there will be only one invited speaker per symposium. This does not prevent symposium organizers from advertising their symposium to colleagues who are experts in their field, but funding to support their participation, if desired, will have to be sought elsewhere. More generally, we ask symposium organizers to favor a diversity of participants in their session, including researchers at various stages of their career, and to be open to interesting submissions coming from groups less well-known to them. We wish to see a mixture of talks by students and by more experienced researchers. All talks (invited and contributed) will be of the same length to ensure synchronization at the scale of the whole conference. In particular, each talk will last 12 minutes, with 5 minutes for questions and 3 minutes to change rooms. This will be strictly enforced.
Substantial concern has been raised about gender bias among invited speakers for symposia at previous ESEB meetings, as women were twice as likely to decline an invitation to give a talk as men. To increase the attendance of women at the congress, there is a possibility to apply for a Congress Attendance Aid Grant, which is a stipend for female scientists to contribute to the additional costs borne privately due to responsibilities for dependents when attending the congress. For further information see here. Please advertise this initiative to your invited speakers.
Symposium organizers will play a key role in the scientific quality of the meeting: we warmly thank you in advance for your enthusiastic proposals and your commitment to the success of this Joint Congress!
To submit a symposium proposal, you will be asked to provide:
1. The names and e-mail addresses of one organizer (for all correspondence) and one co-organizer (as a replacement). Both must be committed to attend the whole meeting.
2. The proposed symposium title.
3. A summary of max 200 words explaining why you think this makes a good subject for the 2nd Joint Congress on Evolutionary Biology.
4. The name of one invited speaker (please check beforehand whether that person is available). Organizers cannot invite themselves to their own symposium.