ESA’s Emerging Issues Conference Series, created by the Governing Board in 2007, provides ESA members the opportunity to organize special conferences highlighting emerging, exciting ideas in ecology with the endorsement and support of the Society. The Series is intended to address high-visibility issues of wide interest in the science community. Organizers are encouraged to work across disciplinary boundaries, to engage compelling speakers, and to produce high-quality publications.
Emerging Issues Conferences will typically last 3 to 5 days and may include plenary sessions, parallel presentation sessions, posters, field trips, and workshop style discussions. The target number of participants should be 60 to 100, including 15 to 20 graduate students. Each conference will be expected to produce at least one peer-reviewed publication, and additional products intended for policy or educational use should be strongly considered. Approved conferences will receive logistical and fundraising support from ESA Headquarters.
CALL FOR PROPOSALS FOR THE THIRD ESA EMERGING ISSUES CONFERENCE
SUBMISSION DEADLINE EXTENDED to Friday, June 22, 2012
How to Apply
ESA plans to organize an Emerging Issues conference approximately every two years. A Call for Proposals will be announced via email to all ESA members and on the ESA website. Any ESA member may submit a proposal. Proposals should be submitted to the ESA Governing Board, c/o Jennifer Riem, ESA Science Programs Coordinator, at ESA Headquarters, 202-833-8773 ext. 218, email email@example.com.
Proposals should be brief (5 – 7 pages) and should include the following elements:
- title and topic
- list of Program Organizing Committee members and Chair(s) (no more than 7 members for the proposal phase; in addition, the ESA Governing Board will name one member who will serve as an ex officio member of the Organizing Committee for any accepted Conference, as will one ESA staff member.)
- suggested dates and duration (ESA staff will work with the selected organizing committee to finalize these)
- summary of the importance and relevance of the topic to ecology
- suggested format (e.g., invited speakers, contributed papers or posters, case studies)
- list of suggested key speakers
- preferred site, if the Organizing Committee wishes to propose one, and reason for preference; organizers are encouraged but not required to identify a facility willing to host the conference
- brief description of any field trips suggested for the conference
- list of proposed products
- potential funders and proposed cosponsors and roles (financial or nonfinancial; these may include other professional societies)
- plan for ensuring gender and ethnic diversity of invited speakers and participants, including members of underrepresented groups in ecology
- brief biographical sketch of Organizing Committee Chair(s) including recent publications
The President of ESA will appoint an ad hoc committee to review proposals and make a recommendation to the Governing Board regarding the winning proposal. Following Governing Board acceptance, at least one Governing Board member and ESA staff will work with the Organizing Committee to finalize the details of the conference topic(s) and format. ESA staff and the Organizing Committee will then begin fundraising and planning, with target dates for the conference of approximately 18 months following acceptance. The actual dates will be determined by the Organizing Committee in consultation with ESA staff. Due to demands on staff time, dates within one month before or after the ESA Annual meeting should be avoided.
Logistics and Finances
The location of the conference will be decided by ESA in consultation with the Organizing Committee. All negotiations and contracts regarding final site arrangements, meeting space, hotel blocks, etc., are the responsibility of ESA staff.
Each conference will be self-supporting, including travel grants for students and invited speakers, meeting space and other logistical costs, and ESA staff time. Conference organizers should identify potential funding sources for these costs in their proposal. However, ESA will be fully responsible for conference finances. ESA staff will work with the Organizing Committee to develop a budget and funding proposals, which will be submitted through ESA with assistance from Organizing Committee members as needed. Other societies, institutions, and organizations acceptable to ESA may participate as cosponsors, which may provide financial or other (e.g., in-kind) support, e.g., conference facilities available to members of the Organizing Committee.
The Organizing Committee will develop the conference agenda, identify invitees, and determine invitees’ willingness to participate. The Organizing Committee will also identify and recruit plenary speakers, session chairs, etc. and will be responsible for reviewing abstracts. ESA staff will make recommendations about conference design, manage all meeting logistics such as correspondence with participants, publicity, abstract submission, design and preparation of the conference program, conference registration, and will design and maintain the conference website.
Each conference is expected to produce one or more papers for publication in an ESA journal, for example, a synthesis article in Frontiers or Ecosphere and/or a feature or supplement in Ecology or Ecological Applications. Depending on the subject matter and format of a given conference, additional products that should strongly be considered include:
- a contribution to Issues in Ecology
- a meeting summary in the ESA Bulletin
- an ESA policy paper or statement
- a statement of research and management status and needs (e.g., for a conference that includes a workshop)
- Congressional briefings and press releases coordinated by the ESA Public Affairs Office
- educational materials, particularly contributions to the EcoEd Digital Library, developed with support from with the ESA Education and Diversity Programs Office
The Organizing Committee will lead the development of conference products, with support from ESA staff as needed. A preliminary set of proposed products should be identified in conference proposals.
Information about the first two Emerging Issues Conferences in 2007 and 2009 is available at www.esa.org/emergingissues/. Questions about the proposal process may be directed to Jennifer Riem, ESA Science Programs Coordinator, Jennifer@esa.org.