11/23/2020: Revised Conference Format: Live Sessions and Flexible Submission Guidelines

11/23/2020: Revised Conference Format: Live Sessions and Flexible Submission Guidelines

November 23, 2020

Dear SSWR Membership,

Thank you for your patience as we have worked to adjust conference plans in response to member feedback regarding submission requirements and deadlines. We write now with details regarding the new plan.

Presenters are no longer required to pre-record sessions. Our vendors could not move the deadlines for pre-conference presentation submissions, and still allow time for registrant viewing in advance of the conference. As such, SSWR conference presentations will now be live. All presenters will deliver short “lightning” presentations by session type (i.e., group paper presentations, symposia, and roundtables). Each presenter will have the option of uploading supplemental materials in advance of the conference. Please review the revised presentation instructions for more detail.

Changing the deadline for pre-conference submission of poster presentations is more complicated. We now have two deadlines for poster submissions, one in December for those who wish for their poster to be viewed during the conference and one in January for those who would prefer more time to submit their poster for viewing after the conference. Please reference the revised instructions. We have also added post-conference poster discussion forums, which elevate and enliven the posters in a way that SSWR has not done before.

As for post-conference sessions, SSWR is also excited to announce that we are making an important shift as a membership organization. We will now offer year-round engagement and learning opportunities. In addition to the poster forums, we will also host virtual special interest group (SIG) meetings and research methods workshops throughout 2021 for all conference registrants. Additional information is forthcoming about these opportunities.

We extend special thanks to Jennifer Lewis, DeeJay Garringo, the conference workgroup, the SSWR board, and the more than 300 SSWR members, who serve across various conference committees, clusters, and volunteer responsibilities. They have worked exceptionally hard for SSWR this year and have done so, as they also managed their own personal and professional challenges during the pandemic and societal unrest.

The board invites further discussion at our annual membership meeting regarding the legal and logistical dynamics involved in shifting the conference from in person to virtual, which delayed our ability to communicate plans and compressed the conference timeline. On a positive note, we are glad that we successfully negotiated with the San Francisco Hilton to cancel the 2021 conference contract without financial consequence to the organization.

We remain excited for SSWR’s 2021 virtual conference and look forward to engaging with you there on the important issues of our time and the role of social work science. Thank you for your commitment to social work, social change, and SSWR.

In service,

Luis H. Zayas, PhD, President
Amanda Moore McBride, PhD, VP and conference chair
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