2021 ESA Annual Meeting
Long Beach, California
August 1 – August 6, 2021

Deadline: 5:00 PM Eastern (2:00 PM Pacific)
Thursday, January 14, 2021

All ESA Annual Meeting proposal and abstract deadlines are 5:00 PM Eastern so that technical support and ESA staff assistance will be immediately available when submitters need it. If you begin your submission very close to the deadline, you are choosing to take a risk, and we will not make an exception if you don’t complete your submission in time. The form automatically closes at 5:00 EST / 2:00 PST whether you have completed your submission or not.
* Proposals that are incomplete or received after the deadline will not be considered.

ESA meetings, open to ESA members and those interested in ecology, are among the most respected meetings of ecologists in the science community. ESA is committed to providing a safe, productive, and welcoming environment. All participants including, but not limited to, attendees, speakers, volunteers, exhibitors, ESA staff, service providers and others are expected to abide by the Code of Conduct for ESA Events. This Code of Conduct applies to all ESA meeting-related events including those sponsored by organizations other than ESA but held in conjunction with ESA events, in public or private facilities. In addition, ESA members and authors of ESA publications must adhere to the Code of Ethics for the Ecological Society of America.

How To Submit

You must submit your proposal using the online submission form. Proposals sent by email will not be considered. Click the link below to begin by selecting which type of proposal you would like to submit. You will be able to return to the proposal to edit it until the submission deadline has passed. Information on how to do so will be included in two automated emails you will receive, first when you begin and then when you complete your submission.

Begin a Session Submission

 

About the 2021 Annual Meeting

If public health conditions allow, the 2021 Annual Meeting will be a hybrid meeting in Long Beach that combines in-person and virtual elements. If in-person elements are not possible, the meeting will be virtual (with all sessions online).
If ESA is able to hold a hybrid meeting, all presenters will have a remote presentation option.

Proposal submitters are asked to indicate their preference for an in person or virtual session at the time of submission. Organizer preferences will not affect acceptance decisions. This question is specifically asked to help ESA plan for a hybrid meeting scenario. If in-person elements are not possible, the meeting will be entirely virtual, with all accepted sessions held online regardless of the preference indicated in the session proposal. We will keep all session organizers updated as we receive more guidance on best practices from our meeting venue and the state of California. Rest assured that this is only a preference, not a final decision of any kind. If we are able to proceed with a hybrid event, session organizers will have the opportunity to revisit this preference during a later stage of planning.

 

About Short Courses

We invite proposals for short courses for the 2021 ESA Annual Meeting. Short courses offer participants an opportunity to learn new skills through interactive instruction and hands-on training in a long format (half to full day). These sessions are not appropriate for the presentation of formal research talks and do not include presentation abstracts. Short courses are more interactive and informal than formal paper sessions, and they can involve extended discussion as well as hands-on training. A strong short course proposal will make clear what knowledge, skills, tools, or insights participants might expect to gain from the session. Short courses will be offered as shorter (3 hour) or longer (6 hour) sessions.

All short courses require advance registration and an additional fee. Files for short courses (slides, prerecorded videos, handouts, recordings of live trainings) will be available only to attendees who signed up for the short course and paid the fee. Short courses could be cancelled due to low enrollment. This decision will be communicated to the session organizer, so it is critical that we have appropriate contact information for the lead organizer. If a short course meets minimum registration, it is expected to proceed.

To propose a session for a shorter timeslot on a weekday please see our call for workshops.

2021 Annual Meeting: In-Person vs Virtual Format Preference

Proposal submitters will be asked to indicate their preference for an in person or virtual session at the time of submission. This question is specifically asked to help ESA plan for a hybrid meeting scenario. If in-person elements are not possible, the meeting will be entirely virtual, with all accepted sessions held online regardless of the preference indicated in the session proposal. To help inform your proposal development, this section describes what we think the in-person and virtual formats will involve. We will update this information here and directly contact all short course organizers as we receive more guidance on best practices from our meeting venue and the state of California. Please rest assured that this is only a preference, not a final decision of any kind. If we are able to proceed with a hybrid event, you will have the opportunity to revisit this preference during a later stage of planning once we have more information.

In-person short courses

  • We do not know what the scheduling options will be for in-person short courses at this point. We will need to build the in-person schedule to accommodate deep cleaning of rooms between sessions and other safety measures that our venue is still in an early stage of developing.
  • We anticipate that short courses will require breaks to allow for deep cleaning of rooms. The 3- and 6- hour scheduling options include only instruction time. Any required breaks will be in addition to this time.
  • The standard A/V setup is a screen, LCD projector, and laptop (with sound). Any additional equipment, such as flip charts, must be requested in the proposal and may incur additional fees.
  • Some of the rooms we will use for short courses may not have wireless internet access. There is a place in the proposal form to indicate if wireless connectivity is important for your short course.
  • Unless the course organizer provides funding to cover the associated costs, any requests for food, beverages, or additional equipment will increase the fee attendees must pay to participate.
  • We will follow up with short course organizers about food and beverage options once we know more about social distancing measures.

Virtual short courses

We do not know what the scheduling options will be for virtual short courses at this point. Virtual short courses will include live instruction time (live video) with an option to upload supporting documents and prerecorded presentations. We anticipate that virtual short courses will require computer breaks for participants. The estimated 3- and 6- hour scheduling options include only instruction time. Any required breaks will be in addition to this time.

Career Track

ESA is piloting its first topical track for meeting sessions this year. All sessions included in the career track will be highlighted throughout the program and scheduled to minimize conflicts. Submitters proposing a session about career options, skills and development will be able to indicate that they would like to be included in this track.

Proposal Format

The information listed below must be submitted through the online submission form. It is provided here to assist you in planning your submission. The form may differ slightly from the version listed here. Proposals that are incomplete or received by email will not be considered. You may begin a submission and then return to edit it up until the deadline.

Components of a Short Course Proposal

  • Session title
  • Session description (appears in the online program only; 250 words max.)
  • Summary sentence (appears in the meeting registration form; 50 words max.)
  • A lead organizer (Required; name, institution, and email).
  • Co-organizers (Optional; name, institution, and email for each).
  • Maximum number of participants
  • Estimated short course length: 3 hours or 6 hours of instruction time (not including breaks).
  • Conflicts: Are there any other proposed sessions that this session should not conflict with?
  • Linked sessions: Is there another proposed session or requested social event that this session is linked with?
  • Would you like this session to be considered for inclusion in the Career Track? Yes/No.
  • Session format preference: If the meeting is hybrid, do you prefer a session in person at the convention center or an all virtual session online? Please note that is the meeting is all virtual, all sessions will be online only.
  • For short courses that prefer an in-person format:
    • Room setup: All short courses will be set to comply with social distancing requirements. Unfortunately, we cannot consider session organizer preferences for room setup this year.
    • Equipment: None, wireless internet connection, flip chart and easel, additional A/V equipment (specify with a note).
    • Food and beverage: We will follow up with short course organizers about food and beverage options once we know more about social distancing measures. In the meantime, please note that unless the course organizer provides funding to cover the associated costs, any requests for food, beverages, or additional equipment will increase the fee attendees must pay to participate.

Session and Presentation Rules

Short courses are required to have one organizer who will be the point of contact for correspondence with ESA and will be asked to make decisions regarding the session during planning. Co-organizers may also be listed, but the lead organizer is the point of contact.

To promote diversity of sessions and topics, no person will be permitted to serve as the lead organizer for more than two workshops, short courses, and/or special sessions at the 2021 Annual Meeting. A group of organizers may propose multiple linked sessions. Each session should be submitted separately, and it should be made clear which other proposals it is linked to, as well as its intended order in the sequence of the events.

Note that the One Presentation Rule does not apply to workshops, short courses, and special sessions. Anyone presenting in one of these sessions may also present in a scientific session (a formal talk or poster).

Scheduling

To avoid conflicts with scientific sessions, short courses are not scheduled concurrently with oral or poster sessions. Accepted short courses will be scheduled in 3- or 6- hour slots to minimize topic overlap and as meeting space and logistics allow. We do not yet have enough information about social distancing measures and virtual meeting constraints to specify potential scheduling slots. We will follow up with organizers of accepted workshops once we have more information.

Other important information to consider

Acceptance of your proposal does not obligate ESA beyond providing a meeting space and including the short course in the program. All organizers and participants must register for the conference at the one day or full week rate. Organizers are responsible for making this clear to anyone they recruit to help with the session. ESA will not reimburse short course organizers for expenses.

Evaluation Process and Criteria

The Program Committee reviews all proposals for short courses and makes acceptance decisions. Proposals may be from any area of science related to ecology, but those that pertain to the overall theme, “Vital Connections in Ecology” are especially encouraged. We also welcome proposals that explore connections with the social or natural sciences or that are directed to ecological education at any level.

The primary criteria for acceptance include scientific merit, probable interest by meeting attendees, and a clearly written and compelling description. Limits of space and time may make it impossible to accommodate all worthy submissions. The Program Committee has final authority for acceptance and scheduling for any proposed short course.

If your proposal is accepted

All submitters will be notified of acceptance decisions by mid-February. At that time, organizers will be provided with instructions to begin preparing the session for the online program in the spring.

Finalized information for all accepted short courses will be available in the online program when registration opens.

Cancellation Policy

Once a short course has been accepted and listed online, cancellation imposes a serious burden. Do not submit a proposal if you are uncertain that you will be able to fulfill your obligation to organize and conduct the session. Once a session is accepted by the Program Committee, cancellation by the session organizer may preclude the acceptance of any sessions proposed by the organizer for the 2022 ESA Annual Meeting.

Important Dates

January 14, 2021 Deadline for submitting a proposal to ESA.
February 18, 2021 Notification of acceptance sent to organizer.
May 2021 Finalized session information is available in the online program.

Questions?

Dr. Sarah Emery
Program Chair
Biology Department
University of Louisville
Louisville, Kentucky
Phone: (502) 852- 5940
sarah.emery@nulllouisville.edu
Jennifer Riem
Meeting Program Associate
Ecological Society of America
1990 M Street, NW, Suite 700
Washington, DC 20036 USA
Phone: (202) 833-8773 x 218
jennifer@nullesa.org