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Member Network Conferences

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Member Network Committees will generally be invited to get involved with any CIEEM conferences happening in their geographic/topic area. This may include helping to put together the programme and/or coming along to help run things on the day in return for a free delegate place.

Special Interest Groups may submit a proposal to run a conference of their own, following the guidance below.


  1. How do I get approval for the conference date and topic?

  2. How do I formulate a conference proposal?

  3. How are delegate fees set?

  4. What is involved and how much time will we need to allocate?

  5. What is the process for organising a Conference?

  6. How can I get sponsors/exhibitors on board?

  7. Where can I find tools and templates to help me?


 

1.  How do I get approval for the conference date and topic?

Owing to the high workload involved in organising or supporting a conference and to avoid the risk of over-supply, only one CIEEM conference can be held per month and a maximum of seven conferences per year. This includes CIEEM’s regular Spring, Summer and Autumn Conferences and the three annual country conferences in Wales, Scotland and Ireland.  Consequently only 1-2 SIG conference can be held each year, with dates and themes to be agreed around the regular conference programme on a first come first served basis.

Approval for your SIG conference proposal is via a Conference Proposal Form, submitted  to the Member Networks Coordinator according to the following timeframe:

  • Initial proposal submitted for consideration by the Governing Board in October for conferences happening the following financial year. The full CIEEM conference programme for the following year is agreed at this meeting. Deadline 30 September.
  • A more detailed proposal must then be submitted to the TECDC committee to assist in developing your conference plans. Deadline at least 6 months prior to your proposed conference date.

It is advisable to email your preliminary ideas to the Member Networks Coordinator prior to working up your full proposal to check for any obvious clashes.

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2.  How do I formulate a conference proposal?

Things to think about to inform your Conference Proposal Form:

  • What is the reason for running a conference with this theme / how has the need been identified?
  • Does your proposal have a suitably ‘topical’ flavour that is particularly relevant to your area of special interest?
  • Are you able to find enough suitable speakers on this topic? 
  • Is the location appropriate?  Are there public transport links?
  • Does the date clash with any school or public holidays?
  • What are the associated costs (e.g. venue, catering, speaker expenses, etc)?   
  • Could you collaborate with the relevant Geographic Section for the location you have chosen?
  • What will your format be? For example a whole day of talks, half a day of talks with a related site visit, or a mixture of talks and workshops?  What are the cost implications of this format?
  • Are you confident that you have the necessary time available within the committee to plan and run the conference (it always takes longer than you think!). Help with advertising and bookings will always be available from the Secretariat, but attendance on the day will be subject to availability.

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3.  How are delegate fees set?

The delegate fee will be set by the Secretariat, based on information provided in your Conference Proposal Form.  Fees will be in line with the delegate rates for other CIEEM conferences, but may vary where there are subsidised costs, such as a low cost or free venue.  All hard costs must be covered, including; venue and equipment hire, catering, and expenses for speakers/organisers.  Surplus income will be split 50:50 between the Committee and main CIEEM accounts to reflect the combined efforts in running the event and to cover Secretariat costs for administration.  

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4.  What is involved and how much time will we need to allocate?

Organising a conference is a significant piece of work and any committee needs to be confident it can devote enough time to do it well.  Support will be available from the Member Networks Coordinator and other Secretariat staff as appropriate for bookings and delegate materials, but the main body of putting the conference together will fall to the committee.  This is your conference.

It is strongly advised that a small conference subgroup of just 4-5 committee members is convened to take the lead on organising the conference and liaising with the Secretariat.  This subgroup can of course draw on the wider committee (and indeed other members) as needed.

The committee subgroup will be fully involved in organising the conference and so will be welcome to attend the event free of charge.

This Conference Planning Tasks document provides a detailed breakdown of all the tasks involved and whether each is likely to fall to the committee or the Secretariat.  Every conference is slightly different and tasks will vary, but this should give you a good idea of what is involved and when each step should be completed by. 

Please note that if plans fall significantly behind schedule it may be necessary to postpone to a more realistic date.

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5.  What is the process for organising a Conference?

Click on the image to open as a pdf.

Conference flowchart

 

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6.  How can I get sponsors/exhibitors on board?

Member Network committees are encouraged to seek sponsorship / exhibitors to support their conferences.  These should first and foremost be from companies who primarily operate within your own topic area, or companies with which conference organisers have a direct working relationship.

Larger companies with a more (inter)national coverage may be approached where the conference theme is particularly relevant to them and this does not conflict with sponsorship approaches made for other CIEEM activities. However, committees should not make ‘cold calls’ to potential sponsors where you don’t already have a connection.

In order to avoid multiple disconnected approaches being made to companies by CIEEM and the various Member Network committees, it is important that you send your ideas for conference sponsorship to the Marketing Officer and Member Network Coordinator in the first instance to check whether this is appropriate in view of any other recent contact that may have been made to that organisation for similar purposes. 

Committees are also encouraged to forward contacts and ideas for organisations with a larger reach that may be interested in sponsoring one of the main CIEEM conferences that happen in different locations around the UK and Ireland throughout the year.  These should be sent to the Marketing Officer.

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7.  Where can I find supporting tools and templates?

Templates are available on the Resources page, including:

  • Conference Proposal Form
  • Conference Speaker Form
  • Conference Planning Tasks
  • Conference Venue Checklist
  • Conference Programme Template

If there is anything else you would find useful please contact the Member Networks Coordinator.

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