Created by a scientist ... for scientists
COVID-19 Pandemic and Conferences

Message from the CEO, Professor Andrei Voronkov

In my previous life, when I was just a scientist, I loved attending conferences. Attending a conference was never about just listening to talks - it was about meeting people, making friends, learning new things, and understanding various cultures. Driven by my interest in cultures, I founded a series of conferences – LPAR – using the slogan "to boldly go where no reasonable conference has gone before".

The whole reason I created EasyChair was my heavy involvement in conference organization. It was initially used by me and my fellow organizers yet quickly grew to be used by about 400 conferences within 5 years.

This conferencing world from the past now seems surreal, like science fiction, though the world around us looks like science fiction too. Conference organizers caught in the current crisis should make rational decisions about their conferences; I hope this page will help you to understand and evaluate various choices and solutions, while we are working hard to introduce an alternative that should make lives easier at these hard times.

Above all, stay safe, healthy and updated.

My Conference is Affected: What Should I Do?

If you are facing this question, you are not alone: many conferences are now trying to answer this question right now. The most popular solutions are summarized below:

  1. Go virtual. Some conferences, especially top tier conferences, try to find out if and how they can be run online. As a response to this demand, EasyChair is currently creating a platform for online (video) conferencing.
  2. Postpone the conference to an indefinite time in the future. This is currently the most popular solution. The vast majority of our license extension applications come from conferences that made this decision.
  3. Change to later dates. This solution is less popular since it is unclear when and how travel restrictions will be lifted.
  4. Cancel this year conference. In this case, conferences would sometimes still make reviewing and/or publish proceedings, especially in the areas of computing and engineerings where proceedings publications are as important as journal publications. Some conferences also put online presentations (such as slides and posters) prepared by their authors.
  5. Merge the 2020 and the 2021 conference. The idea is that the authors with accepted presentations in 2020 can present them at the 2021 conference. In this case, the 2020 and 2021 conferences may have separate or joint proceedings.

How to Extend Your EasyChair License

If your conference is postponed, your EasyChair conference license may expire before the new conference dates. The good news is that in this case you can extend your license as described in our documentation.

EasyChair

EasyChair is obviously affected by the crisis. As many other businesses, we are facing a considerable loss of revenue, while we still have to pay salaries, office rent, tax and overheads.

The good news is that we have enough resources to run for many months, so we are confident that we will survive this crisis and keep our excellent team.

We strive to help conferences in these difficult times. For this reason, we have put on hold several projects and extensions we had been working on. Our developers and all our staff are working extra hours to implement video conferencing, which we are determined to deliver as soon as possible.

Share Your Experience on Twitter

We have created a Twitter thread, where conferences can share their experience about how they handle the current crisis. We will be monitoring this thread and update this page based on the feedback provided by our users. You can also write to us directly using our contact page.