Archives for September 4, 2017

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Expensive academic conferences give us old ideas and no new faces

Dear All, Please be more choosy when making decision on going to a conference.

Conferences have been held since the early days of academia. But their size has changed dramatically. The intimate gatherings of academics from a specific field have now been replaced with mega conferences, frequently featuring 1,000 participants or more. Stockholm World Water Week, which brings together scholars and practitioners, counts more than 3,000 participants.

These gatherings are fancier than ever. Academic conferences used to be in universities. Yet the last annual meeting of the American Association of Geographers, the world’s largest geography conference, was in the Sheraton Boston, a four-star venue. Many now also feature elaborate social programmes. Those who attend World Water Week must choose whether the cocktail reception on Monday night, the royal banquet on Wednesday night or the “mingle and dance” on Thursday night is the conference’s main see-and-be-seen event.

Some of these events are financed via conference fees. Scholars from the United Kingdom had to pay a registration fee of £530 to attend the most recent International Sustainable Development Research Society Conference, a large conference on sustainable development. Add £850 for flights (the conference was held in Colombia), £300 for the Airbnb and £100 for miscellaneous items such as in-transit Wi-Fi. The costs are roughly equal to the monthly net salary of a post-doc in the UK.

Conference grants are difficult to obtain and can be miniscule. Many early-career scholars struggle to attend academic conferences. Financing the visit of an academic conference can be a challenge even for tenured academics. An associate professor from Frostburg University, United States, reported that her institution only equips her with £150 annually for conference travel – not even enough to pay 20% of this year’s registration fee for world water week.

Those who manage to attend academic conferences expect many benefits. They hope to find their next collaborators. They hope to broaden their horizons to develop new research ideas. Conferences which mix practitioners with academics frequently also aspire to impact policies. This year’s world water week hopes to find novel hands-on solutions to waste water reduction and reuse.

However, our experience suggests that conferences usually do not deliver on these promises. There are always the same old faces, with a few more wrinkles every year, using obfuscating jargon to present the same old stuff. We’ve seen papers featured at conferences in recent years that could have easily come from the 1960s or 1970s. This not the research we think will deliver clean and safe water and improve sanitation for the millions who need it.

Unknown faces would come to these conferences, not just the academic
bourgeoisie. Meanwhile, more rigorous peer-review of conference abstracts may decrease the number of participants, but could help to ensure that the work presented is thought-provoking. These types of conferences may even impact policies.

Slowly, academics have started experimenting with the current conference format. Seminar leaders at World Water Week now feedback presentations prior to the conference to enhance their understandability. Meanwhile, the Feminist and Women’s Studies Association of the UK and Ireland will hold a conference that is entirely virtual this early September. Many more of these initiatives are needed, though.

Most academic conferences are oversized. Even the privileged few that can attend them rarely find at them what they hoped for. The academy frequently claims that it is a champion of social justice and diversity. But the academic conference business underscores the hypocrisy of this claim.

Original Source Click HERE.

The 7th International Conference on Information Technology and Multimedia (ICIMU 2017)

The 7th International Conference on Information Technology and Multimedia (ICIMU 2017) organized by the College of Computer Science and Information Technology, Universiti Tenaga Nasional (UNITEN) will be held on the 8th & 9th of November 2017 at Hotel Bangi-Putrajaya, Selangor, Malaysia. The conference provides a platform for researchers, academia, engineers, standardization bodies, government officials and practitioners to dialogue and exchange ideas on recent research and development in various areas of computing.

The theme for this edition of the conference is “Powering Information Society through Data Analytics

We invite you to submit your unpublished, original research work to our conference. Submitted papers may address technical or non-technical aspects of data analytics and other areas of computing. Relevant papers that are not explicitly addressing the theme are also welcome.

All accepted papers will be published in any of the following selected Thomson Reuters (Web of Science) index journals:

  1. International Journal of Future Generation Communication & Networking (IJFGCN)
    ISSN: 2233-7857
  2. International Journal of Security and Its Applications (IJSIA)
    ISSN: 1738-9976
  3. International Journal of Advanced and Applied Sciences (IJAAS)
    ISSN: 2313-626X
  4. International Journal of Interactive Multimedia and Artificial Intelligence (IJIMAI)
    ISSN: 1989-1660

Further info Click HERE.