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Point of View: Mitigating the impact of conference and travel cancellations on researchers’ futures

  1. Tracey Weissgerber  Is a corresponding author
  2. Yaw Bediako
  3. Charlotte M de Winde
  4. Hedyeh Ebrahimi
  5. Florencia Fernández-Chiappe
  6. Vinodh Ilangovan
  7. Devang Mehta
  8. Carolina Paz Quezada
  9. Julia L Riley
  10. Shyam M Saladi
  11. Sarvenaz Sarabipour
  12. Andy Tay
  1. QUEST – Quality | Ethics | Open Science | Translation, Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Berlin Institutes of Health, Germany
  2. Division of Nephrology and Hypertension, Mayo Clinic, United States
  3. West African Centre for Cell Biology of Infectious Pathogens, University of Ghana, Ghana
  4. MRC Laboratory for Molecular Cell Biology, University College London, United Kingdom
  5. Non-Communicable Diseases Research Center, Endocrinology and Endocrinology and Metabolism Population Sciences Institute, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Islamic Republic of Iran
  6. Instituto de Investigación en Biomedicina de Buenos Aires - CONICET - Partner Institute of the Max Planck Society, Argentina
  7. Aarhus University, Denmark
  8. Department of Biological Sciences, University of Alberta, Canada
  9. Centro Integrativo de Biología y Química Aplicada, Universidad Bernardo O'Higgins, Chile
  10. Department of Botany and Zoology, Stellenbosch University, South Africa
  11. Department of Biology, Dalhousie University, Canada
  12. Biochemistry and Molecular Biophysics Option, California Institute of Technology, United States
  13. Institute for Computational Medicine and the Department of Biomedical Engineering, Johns Hopkins University, United States
  14. Department of Biomedical Engineering, National University of Singapore, Singapore
Feature Article
Cite this article as: eLife 2020;9:e57032 doi: 10.7554/eLife.57032
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Table 1
Ideas for virtual conferences.
Organize virtual poster sessions with live video and chat options.Cognitive Neuroscience Society (2020)
Make abstracts, posters, and other conference materials freely available online for anyone to read and share.SOT 2020 (Hines, 2020)
Allow speakers to offer a pre-recorded talk for any online session. Provide instructions for recording a talk.
Invite pre-recorded speakers for a live Q and A session after their virtual talk, at a time that accommodates the speaker’s time zone.
Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections (CROI Foundation/IAS–USA, 2020)
Organize a virtual conference, followed by a virtual ‘unconference’ where scientists interact with others in small groups that are automatically matched based on similar interests.Neuromatch 2020
Organize a free virtual conference using social media and videoconferencing.Librarians Building Momentum for Reproducibility (2020) with draft guidance following their organizing experience available from Sayre et al. (2020)
1st International Twitter Conference of Herpetology (Associação Portuguesa de Herpetologia, 2018)
  1. This is not an exhaustive list.

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