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#2020APPAM Going Virtual


After careful consideration of the state of the pandemic and with the invaluable input from our members, the APPAM Policy Council has made the decision to hold the 2020 APPAM Fall Research Conference virtually. While the format is different, we anticipate a great variety of opportunities to engage with one another at a critical time for our community. The conference will now be held via Zoom starting Wednesday, November 11 through Friday, November 13, with pre-conference activities on Tuesday, November 10 (same week as already scheduled, but shifted to Wednesday-Friday). The conference will start at 11:00 am Eastern Time each day.  Registration rates will be announced in the coming weeks, but they will be significantly lower than in-person rates.

We have worked hard to design an online conference that will achieve as much of our usual real-time feedback, hallway chatter, and networking as we possibly can, in an effective and engaging virtual way. The move to virtual requires some changes to our usual conference template. Based on member feedback about what works and doesn’t work online, we have switched to 55 minute sessions (instead of our traditional 90 minute sessions) with shorter presentations during sessions. We hope this concentrated format will generate more interaction among attendees.To maximize discussion time, while giving presenters the chance to offer their research in a more comprehensive format, all paper presenters will have an option to upload a full-length video recording of their presentation to the online program ahead of time, to supplement their shorter, real-time presentation. We are also adding Policy Area Receptions and an ongoing Slack channel, to facilitate conversations and networking that would have otherwise happened informally.

The Policy Council felt it was important to keep the conference the same size, with as many panels as we usually have, in order to maximize the amount of research presented and to ensure that as many researchers as possible get a chance to participate as presenters. Thus, the number of concurrent sessions is the same as in years past.

The new Schedule-at-a-Glance is available on our website

If you submitted a proposal for the conference, you will be contacted shortly and you will have an opportunity to withdraw your submission if presenting your work virtually is not something you are comfortable doing. Notifications for submissions will follow the opt-out emails in early August.

This year’s conference not only follows what is likely to be an historic national election, but also comes during a global pandemic and a long overdue reassessment of the role of race and racism in American society. These developments bring with them potentially significant implications for public policy, and we are planning this conference centered on taking stock of this moment and what it means for our field. While the format and delivery of the annual Fall Research Conference will be different, the purpose and goal remain the same: sharing the best topical research and making important connections. We hope you will join us for an action-packed three days from the comforts of your own home!

Learn more about the upcoming changes to the conference format by visiting the conference webpage.

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