Session Formats

Speakers' Corner, Performances and Workshops

These formats will not be part of the initial call for proposals. Instead, separate calls will be made for proposals, which will be curated by members of the PCST Program and/or Local Organising committees.


    1. Speakers’ Corner - five-minute informal presentations of an experience, activity or argument relevant to science communication staged outside formal conference spaces, e.g. during tea breaks
    2. Performances of theatrical or musical pieces on scientific topics relevant to the conference themes (maximum 30 minutes)
    3. Workshops to be held on the day before the conference; these may range in length from 90 minutes to four hours and should be practical, hands-on or discussion-based. Proposals to run professional development workshops are especially encouraged.



Submissions are handled by Oxford Abstracts, the link will take you to their site where you can register and submit your proposal.


Unconference - 75 minute sessions where topics of discussion will be decided by the attendees within the session. Although unstructured in topic, delegates will be guided by session leads. There will not be a call for proposals but delegates will have the opportunity to submit ideas for topics at the conference itself and/or via social media.

Round-table Discussions

Roundtable discussions are 75-minute sessions of maximum four speakers addressing a common theme, preferably from different angles (e.g. practical and theoretical) and international perspectives.  At least 50 minutes should be devoted to discussion between the panellists, with short initial statements and the emphasis on interaction. Names, affiliations and contact details of all speakers and a short summary of what they will bring to the discussion need to be included with the proposal. The proposal should nominate chair/s for the session. It is recommended that two co-chairs, offering different perspectives, be named.

Linked Papers

​​​​​​​Linked papers are presented in 75-minute sessions with a maximum of five speakers around a common theme, e.g. arising from a research or practice collaboration.  Each speaker should present their paper for a maximum of 12 minutes so there is time for discussion. Names and details of all speakers and an abstract of the combined session should be included in the proposal along with a short title for the session. Each of the papers for such a session should be subject of a separate proposal by the author or authors, which should refer to the title of the proposed linked paper session. A chair should be nominated for the session.

Individual Papers

​​​​​​​Individual papers are presented in 75-minute sessions for which accepted proposals will be thematically grouped by the Program Committee.  Such papers are expected to offer perspectives on topics relevant to the conference themes from completed research and/or theoretical reflection and/or analysis of practice. The papers may have single or multiple authors; the proposal should be made in the name of the person who will present the paper. Speakers will have a maximum of 12 minutes for presentation.  

Insight Talks

Insight talks are short, focused contributions in 75-minute sessions that explore the conference themes through:

  1. New ideas, in which speakers present work in progress on research or practice, including ideas under development or that have yet to be implemented.
  2. Practice insights, in which speakers describe, demonstrate and/or evaluate specific science communication practices

Accepted proposals will be thematically grouped by the Program Committee. Speakers will have a maximum of eight minutes to speak and answer a few questions.


​​​​​​​Demonstrations run in 75-minute sessions, presenting innovative science communication practices with a commentary on their application and effectiveness, and with time given for discussion. For example, a session might demonstrate new ways of setting up a science blog or exhibit and gaining an audience. Names and details of all speakers (maximum five) and a summary of what each brings to the demonstration should be included in the proposal, which should also nominate the chair for the session.

Visual Presentations

​​​​​​​Visual presentations explore topics relevant to the conference themes visually, e.g. through a poster, photo, infographic, video clip or other means that can be displayed for the duration of the conference. Proposers should also be prepared to make a short oral presentation (maximum five minutes). Specific guidelines for visual presentations will be sent to successful proponents.