Call for Session & Workshop Proposals

Coral reefs are at a critical junction due to a variety of stressors, casting doubts on the future of reef health globally. It is becoming increasingly clear that by the end of this century the structure, function, and services of most coral reef ecosystems will be drastically altered from their current state. Research over the past decades has been dedicated to developing predictive models of reefs and their environments. This involves responses of coral reefs, from the microbial to the ecosystem level, to projected changes and interactions with human societies. It is therefore timely to systematically take stock of the accumulated knowledge on coral reef composition and function with an eye towards the future. This outlook has to consider the socio‐economic and governance aspects in decisions that need to be taken for effective reef management.

The ICRS 2020 scientific program will therefore cover a wide range of subject areas and disciplines concerning coral reefs of the past, the present, and the future. ICRS 2020 will feature contributions ranging from geological, palaeontological, and geobiological subjects to contemporary descriptions of reef status, processes and changes including mechanisms of coral bleaching and diseases. Predictive models of reef functions, emerging technologies, conservation, restoration, and management of novel reef ecosystems are also in the thematic focus of ICRS 2020.

The overarching theme of ICRS 2020 is “Tackling the Challenging Future of Coral Reefs”.
Under this umbrella, ICRS 2020 aims to address key scientific questions, such as:

  • What can we learn from the past in order to understand future reefs and their functioning?
  • Which are the underlying processes driving present changes including coral bleaching, diseases, resilience, and community shift patterns in reefs?
  • With increasing dominance of other functional groups, how do we renew our understanding of reef systems?
  • Which novel data and observations must we capture from reefs at a wide-scale to improve our predictive understanding?
  • What kinds of adaptive management, conservation, and restoration measures need to be developed for future reefs?

The ICRS 2020 organising committee invites proposals for sessions and workshops of interest to researchers, economists, policy makers, resource managers, educators/teachers and students. Session or workshop proposals will address themes from coral reef science, conservation, management, policy or education. Proposals should manifest a particular question. This question will be formulated in the title to encourage interdisciplinary contributions towards various aspects of that question. Proposals for sessions and workshops addressing temperate or cold-water corals and their ecosystems are also welcome.

All submitted proposals will be reviewed by the scientific organising committee and considered for inclusion in the ICRS 2020 scientific program. Besides scientific quality, final selection of session and workshop proposals will consider that the full width of disciplines within the coral reef community is well represented.

Guidelines for proposal submission:

  1. Include an informative title – formulated as a brief question – and a short abstract of no more than 2000 characters. Abstracts exceeding this limit cannot be considered.
  2. Identify one principal chair as the lead contact for the ICRS 2020 organising committee. Only one session proposal and only one workshop proposal can be submitted by a principal chair. For session proposals, identify at least two, but no more than four co-chairs and provide their name(s), affiliation(s) and contact information. For workshop proposals, co-chairs are not required and cannot exceed four per workshop. Co-chairs are limited to one session and one workshop. Proposals submitted in the name of an organisation or enterprise cannot be considered.
  3. Submit via the dedicated online submissions system. Therein, please include information about expected audience in terms of size and discipline(s). For workshop proposals, please also indicated the expected duration and if the event will be open to registered delegates or closed (“by invitation only”).
  4. Proposals received after 31 January 2019 11:59 pm CET cannot be considered.
  5. Please do not submit a proposal if you are uncertain that you will be able to organise and run the session or workshop as this may cause severe disruption to conference planning.

Further information and follow-up procedure after proposal submission:

  1. Decision on acceptance of session and workshop proposals will be taken by the ICRS 2020 organising committee during a retreat in spring 2019. Interdisciplinary session proposals by co-chairs from different countries and/or institutions will be given precedence. The organizing committee may merge proposed sessions that have highly similar themes.
  2. Decisions will be communicated to the principal session chairs by 30 April 2019 so that abstract submission is open between 1 July 2019 and 1 September 2019. Session chairs will need to complete the abstract selection by 31 October 2019.
  3. While session chairs are encouraged to invite contributions to their sessions through their networks, all abstract submissions will be handled through the ICRS 2020 online submission system. All sessions will be publicly open for submissions.
  4. Chairs review abstracts within their session and accept submissions as oral or poster presentations. The number of oral presentations presented by any particular institution should not exceed 2 talks per session. In their selection, session chairs consider gender issues and keep a balanced share of student presentations.
  5. Sessions consist of oral and/or poster presentations. Oral presentations will likely last for 12 min, followed by 2 min for questions, and 1 min for transfer to the next speaker. It is further planned that recent ISRS awardees are invited to give key note presentations in appropriate sessions.
  6. Session chairs are encouraged to reserve a dedicated slot (15 min) at the end of their session to summarize, discuss, and conclude key session findings. Active participation of session speakers in this discussion should be facilitated by the chairs.
  7. Chairs are also encouraged to publish synopsis papers in the ICRS 2020 conference proceedings. Synopsis papers should be submitted by 10 September 2020.
  8. Workshops intended as contributions to the ICRS 2020 scientific program and open to participation by registered delegates will be free of room rental fees. The maximum number of participants for each workshop will be defined by room capacity and requirements of the respective workshop organisers. In case of workshop overbookings, organisers may select from the group of interested participants. For closed events (workshops/meetings) beyond the scientific program, fees for room rental, depending on event duration, and additional booked services will be charged. Please contact us for your specific requirements. Participants of closed events are also required to register for ICRS 2020.
  9. ICRS 2020 organisers cannot provide financial support towards session or speaker costs. Chairs of accepted sessions or workshops fund their own registration, travel and accommodation costs.
  10. For all queries, please contact: office@icrs2020.de