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Vienna

Accessibility at the General Assembly 2019

Accessibility at the General Assembly 2019

In just a couple of weeks, thousands of geoscience professionals from around the world will convene in Vienna, Austria to take part in the EGU General Assembly, the largest geoscience conference in Europe! It’s important to the EGU that scientists are able to attend and enjoy this annual meeting to the fullest. Here are a few of the ways EGU’s annual meeting strives to accommodate our diverse community of geoscientists:

Navigating the convention centre

The EGU General Assembly is held in the Austria Center Vienna, which is fully accessible by wheelchair. If you would like to learn more about attending the General Assembly in a wheelchair, Robin Wilson from the University of Southampton shared his experience at EGU 2016 in this blog post. While a few things have changed since then, the majority of Robin’s report still holds.

Poster halls have chairs available for people to sit down if needed and steps to help presenters hang up their posters. Additionally, each PICO Spot has a lower screen available for increased accessibility. Presentation rooms won’t be equipped with red laser pointers, as some people struggle to distinguish the laser dot from bright screens. Instead we encourage participants to highlight features from their slides using the screen’s cursor, which is more accommodating to everyone’s needs. On rooms with multiple screens, the screen’s cursor is also the only way to point to a feature on all screens simultaneously. In the 12 smaller rooms that have no lecterns, green laser pointers will be available for use instead.

Making room

The EGU child care facility at the General Assembly 2017. Childcare services at EGU 2019 will be for ages 3–11. (Photo credit: EGU / Kai Boggild)

This year a number of rooms will be available during the General Assembly to ensure that participants can enjoy the conference activities, while still being able to take care of their personal needs.

Assembly attendees with young children can take advantage of our free child care facilities, which expanded this year to accommodate more people, at the basement level of the centre (book in advance). EGU’s childcare service is now fully booked, but for children younger than 3 years or older than 11 years, you can get in touch with the Kinderbüro Universität Wien GmbH to make arrangements in Vienna. Please note that this may incur separate costs that are not borne by the conference.

This year a breastfeeding room located on the ground floor will also be available to participants.

EGU 2019 participants can find space for rest, relaxation or meditation in the four quiet rooms available at the basement level, as well as use the two multi-faith prayer rooms, separated by gender, on the ground floor.

Accessible Vienna

Vienna has been praised by many for being one of the most accessible cities in Europe. Over the last 20 years, the city has been working towards becoming “barrier-free,” implementing many initiatives with accessibility in mind. For example, the city has replaced much of their cobblestones with flat, smooth surfaces and ramped kerbs. Most trains, trams and buses also feature low floors and step-free boarding options. Additionally, almost all stations are accessible by ramp or elevator and have “guiding strips” for visually-impaired visitors. You can go to the Vienna Tourist Board website to find accommodating hotels, specialised tour guides, recommended sights and services, and other information on the city’s accessibility.

Most trains, trams and buses in Vienna feature low floors and step-free boarding options. Additionally, almost all stations are accessible by ramp or elevator and have guiding strips for visually-impaired visitors (Photo credit: AndyLeungHK via Pixabay

Participants are encouraged to give the EGU suggestions for how we can continue to improve the EGU meeting’s accessibility. You can give us general feedback when answering the 2019 General Assembly feedback survey and send more specific recommendations to the EGU Programme Committee chair.

The EGU General Assembly will take place from 07 to 12 April 2019 in Vienna, Austria. For the full session programme and more information on the General Assembly, see the EGU 2019 website and follow us on Twitter (#EGU19 is the official conference hashtag) and Facebook.

Presenting at the General Assembly 2019: A quick ‘how to’ from the EGU

Presenting at the General Assembly 2019: A quick ‘how to’ from the EGU

The schedule is out, presentation slots have been assigned and it’s time to start thinking about putting yours together. Whether you have an oral, poster or PICO slot, we have a suite of simple guidelines to get you ready for the conference!

Orals

The guidelines for oral presentations are online. All oral presentations should have the dimensions 16:9 or 4:3 and last about 12 minutes, with 3 minutes for questions. Oral presentations take place over four 105-minute time blocks. Make sure you’re in the presentation room approximately 30 minutes before your time block starts, so your presentation can be uploaded or so you can connect your laptop to the system. There will be a lecture room assistant to help you get everything ready.

Posters

Guidelines for poster presentations are also online. Importantly, the poster boards landscape and are 1978 mm by 1183 mm. Posters should be hung between 08:00 and 08:30 on the day of your scheduled poster presentation using tape available from roaming assistants. Please retrieve your poster at the end of the day (between 19:00 and 19:30). Those that are not collected will be disposed of. By the start of the General Assembly, EGU will have sent your Authors in Attendance Time – during this time, you must be present at your display.

If there is a gap in the corresponding oral session, conveners may call upon poster presenters to give a short ad hoc summary of their posters. Therefore, it might be useful to have a couple of slides (1-2) prepared in advance to help illustrate your findings.

PICOs

For the seventh year now we have a different kind of presentation: Presenting Interactive COntent (PICO). The guidelines for PICO presentations are available online. PICO sessions combine the best of oral and poster presentations. Every PICO author presents their slides in a “2 minutes madness”. After these short presentations, all attendees have enough time to watch the presentation again on interactive screens and hold discussions with the author and other attendees. These presentations are shown on wide-screens, so we recommend producing Power Point or PDF presentations with an 16:9 aspect ratio. However, you can also prepare your presentation in the classic 4:3 format. The extra space is then used for the branding of the contribution as well as the navigation. For 16:9 presentations, if navigation buttons are needed, our PICO staff on-site at the conference determines the position of the buttons together with you, so they don’t detract from your presentation. One thing to keep in mind is that, unlike in the past, PICO presentations no longer support Prezi.

For tips on how to make a PICO presentation, why not download the How to make a PICO guide. For a first-hand account of what it’s like to take part in a PICO session, take a look at this post by early career scientists in the Seismology Division too.

Outstanding Student Poster and PICO (OSPP) Awards

If you are presenting a poster or PICO at the upcoming General Assembly you can have your presentation considered for an OSPP Award. Check out one of our earlier blog posts to learn more on how to register yourself for the award, as well as a watch our interview with OSPP judges explaining what they look for in a winning poster.

Social media guidelines

The EGU encourages an open dialogue on social media (Twitter, Facebook, etc.) and blogging platforms during the General Assembly. The default assumption is to allow open discussion of General Assembly oral, PICO, and poster presentations on social media. However, you can request that the contents of your presentation are not disseminated on social media. The icons below may be downloaded from the EGU General Assembly website to include on slides or posters to clearly express if you do or do not want your results posted on any social media networks or blogs.

So that conference participants can embrace social media while at the same time remaining respectful of presenting authors’ work and protecting their research output, we’ve put together some social media guidelines, which you can find on the EGU 2019 website.

Time Blocks

Timetabling at the General Assembly is organised into the following time blocks:

  • TB1 08:30–10:15
  • TB2 10:45–12:30
  • TB3 14:00–15:45
  • TB4 16:15–18:00
  • TB5: 18:00-19:00

There is free tea and coffee available in the poster halls in the breaks between TB1 & TB2 and TB3 & TB4. TB5 5 offers refreshments, and is dedicated to networking and additional poster viewing.

No-shows

If you already know that your abstract will not be presented, you are kindly requested to withdraw your corresponding abstract as soon as possible.

EGU 2019: Connect at the Networking & Early Career Scientists’ Zone

EGU 2019: Connect at the Networking & Early Career Scientists’ Zone

The EGU General Assembly, the largest geoscience conference in Europe, attracts more than 15,000 participants every year. While there are countless opportunities throughout the week to meet new people and reconnect with colleagues, the convention centre can be overwhelming, especially for early career scientists (ECS) and first-time attendees.

The Networking & Early Career Scientists’ Zone (formerly called the Early Career Scientists Lounge) on the Red Level of the conference centre is the perfect place to catch up with your peers and make new connections in a more relaxed setting.

Early Career Scientists checking the notice boards at the EGU General Assembly 2018 (Credit: Stephanie Zihms)

Early career scientists across all fields are encouraged to meet there to grab a coffee, hold informal discussions and perhaps even find opportunities for collaborations. Additionally, we hope that mentors and mentees participating in the General Assembly Mentoring Programme, as well as other meeting participants interested in networking, will meet here.

Stay up-to-date

Be sure to check out the zone’s community notice boards, where you can find information on various topics, like cultural activities in Vienna and division social events, taking place during the week of the conference. Your feedback to the ECS representatives is very welcome and can be posted on the suggestion boards too. You can also post your own flyers here to highlight sessions and events taking place throughout the week.

Attend and organise pop-up events

The Networking & ECS Zone also hosts a series of pop-up style events, from using poetry to communicate your science to giving research elevator pitches. Be sure to check out the notice boards to find more info on what drop-in sessions are scheduled for the week.

Interested in holding your own drop-in session? Participants are encouraged to organise pop-up events in the zone as well! A whiteboard, flipchart, and 42” screen with a notebook attached will be available in the main room for attendees to give ad-hoc presentations, plus two side room ‘pop-up spots’ can be used to hold informal sessions.

If you’d like to add a drop-in session to our schedule, you can contact the EGU communications officer with the pop-up event title, date, and time by 18 March. If you’d rather hold an impromptu session, such as a follow-up event to an over-subscribed short course, never fear! During the conference you can plan and host informal events on the spot; a sign-up sheet on the zone’s notice boards will be available for advertising drop-in sessions.

The EGU General Assembly is taking place in Vienna, Austria from 7 to 12 April. Check out the full session programme on the General Assembly website and follow the Assembly’s online conversation on Twitter (#EGU19 is the official conference hashtag) and Facebook.