GeoTalk: Jane Roussak, EGU’s Events Manager, tells us how to get connected at EGU24!

GeoTalk: Jane Roussak, EGU’s Events Manager, tells us how to get connected at EGU24!

The EGU General Assembly 2024 (EGU24) will be held 14-19 April 2024, in Vienna, Austria and online. To learn more about discovering your research network at EGU24 and the inner workings of organising such an event, I sat down with Jane Roussak to ask her some questions.

Hello Jane. Thank you for joining GeoTalk! Could you introduce yourself to our readers?

Thank you for having me! I’m Jane Roussak, EGU Events Manager, and I’ve been working at the EGU headquarters in Munich, Germany since January 2022. I have a BSc in Environmental Sciences, and a history of programme and event coordination in the Canadian non-profit sector (and on a voluntary basis for charity). This background, paired with a bold decision to move to Germany mid-pandemic, led me to the dynamic role I’m in today.

As EGU’s Events Manager, you have a behind-the-scenes view of what organising the General Assembly is like. Could you give our readers some insight into the coordination of this mammoth task?
Jane Roussak with the EGU 2024 Programme Committee co-chairs Athanasios Nenes and Maria-Helena Ramos

Jane Roussak with the EGU 2024 Programme Committee co-chairs Maria-Helena Ramos and Athanasios Nenes

The cycle of planning spans the whole year. EGU takes a bottom-up approach in building the programme, starting with session proposals from the community all the way through to abstract submission. This is followed by the extensive work of our Programme Committee and conveners to arrange and schedule the sessions.

None of this would be possible without our dedicated members who volunteer their time to shape the General Assembly each year; whether it’s through taking a role with one of EGU’s scientific divisions or committees, or by convening a session at the conference.

We’re also fortunate to have a solutions-driven conference organising partner, Copernicus Meetings, who takes care of the logistics and technical aspects.

As you can see, it takes a village to “raise” the EGU General Assembly!

Building and renewing social and professional networks is one of highlights of the EGU General Assembly. What opportunities are there for attendees to connect at #EGU24?

Whether you’re looking to discuss a niche specialisation or find a cross-disciplinary collaboration, Europe’s largest geoscientific conference has you covered! EGU24 attendees can engage with scientists in similar fields or learn something new through the hundreds of disciplinary sessions.

For more casual interactions, they can look forward to two coffee breaks a day, a variety of Networking (NET) receptions organised by the union, as well as participate in (or organise their own!) Pop-up networking events. Dozens of interesting exhibitors are waiting to be discovered, not to mention community-led Townhall meetings and Splinter meetings… and much, much more! With so many great options to choose from, we recommend building your personal programme ahead of time.

EGU, with its organising partner Copernicus, is continually reassessing and refining the hybrid approach of the Assembly. How can on-site attendees expect to engage with virtual material at #EGU24?

One of our main objectives for EGU24 is to improve the on-site to virtual participant interactions, especially for poster and PICO presentations.

We’re excited to introduce a revised PICO concept which provides on-site participants the opportunity to have in-depth discussions with virtual authors at the PICO stage area.

All virtual posters have been strategically scheduled during time block three of the conference, when no on-site poster nor PICO presentations are to take place. This is to optimise audience engagement in our custom-designed virtual platform, Gather.Town, which can be accessed by all registered EGU24 participants. During this time, on-site participants can take in poster presentations happening online by visiting PICO spots, which are transformed into virtual poster hubs.

Virtual poster hubs tour on-site attendees through the corresponding virtual poster hall in Gather.Town, enabling real-time interactions with virtual poster authors!

We also bridge on-site and virtual participants by encouraging them to share their science through supplementary materials. Participants can comment on these materials before, during and after the Assembly through the period of 25 March – 31 May, 2024. This helps participants to continue the conversation beyond the conference!

While it may seem like EGU continues to “reinvent the wheel”, our participants can rest assured that this process is part of a larger goal of moving towards a stable hybrid format for General Assemblies to come (thanks to the wise guidance of our Programme Committee Co-chairs). We always look to the community for input and encourage you to share your thoughts and suggestions through the EGU24 feedback survey or by emailing

Finally, what are you looking forward to most at the General Assembly?

Being among friendly faces of volunteers and colleagues from the Copernicus team, witnessing the realisation of our collective efforts, and seeing thousands of attendees enjoy themselves and connect over science… it’s truly a special energy when we come together at the Austria Centre Vienna. On a personal note, EGU24 will be an extra memorable year, with my parents joining us from overseas for the first time to see what the EGU General Assembly is all about!

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Simon Clark is the Project Manager at the European Geosciences Union, where he oversee project, community, and organisational development. Simon is also the point of contact for early career scientists (ECS) at the EGU Executive Office. They have a PhD in Ecohydraulics and Environmental Engineering from the University of Liverpool, UK. Beyond research, Simon also has a strong interest in science-communication, -art, and -storytelling. You can find Simon on twitter @kelpiesi.

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