Organizing a poster session in a conference or event

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Advices and recommendations to organize a poster session in a conference or event.

Venue[edit]

Conference organizers give poster chair lead-time requirements:

  1. how many posters the venue can accommodate, when, and where;
  2. how soon does the accepted-set need to be determined to give conference organizers time to arrange space and equipment on site.

Poster chair[edit]

Appoint poster chair sufficiently early to provide both lead time and time for participants to prepare posters (ideally when the Program committee and call for participation are being formed).

Suggestions for poster chair:

  • Accept poster submissions via some sort of submissions system, not email. You should give submitters a verification that they've actually submitted. It might be good as part of the overall conference submission/call for participation to have submitters define their submission as a paper, a poster, or both.
  • Have submitters send a poster draft, not an abstract. Give recommendations for what makes a good poster: few words, words used to ask intriguing questions, curiosity-arising figures and graphs. You might want to point out that one of the purposes of a poster is that it is an ad to talk to the researcher.
  • Give submitters a more-accurate model of poster session: there may be some quality control applied, but it's not a peer-reviewed venue. The purpose of presenting a poster is not to establish a line in a CV, but to get critical feedback from peers, and possibly hone the work for a later peer-reviewed paper submission.
  • Dedicate an hour or two where people with posters stand next to them and answer questions, nothing else scheduled, refreshments close by; and an area where posters can be left up through the conference so other people can look at them, etc.

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