As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to displace in-person conferences around the world, the American Chemical Society is adapting by holding its first virtual conference. Originally scheduled to take place in mid-June in Seattle, the 24th Annual Green Chemistry and Engineering Conference will now be held online June 15–19, 11:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m. (EDT). Registration for the event is free.
“The virtual format allows a broader and more global participation,” says Mary Kirchhoff, director of the ACS Green Chemistry Institute (GCI). “We are excited to be able to provide a way for over 400 conference presenters to share their research and engage in live discussion in a safe, virtual environment.”
Each day will start with a live keynote presentation followed by a Q&A session. Poster presentations will be divided over the 5 days, allowing attendees time to view and interact with presenters via online chat. Daily oral sessions will be split into two 80 min sections followed by 20 min live discussions. A virtual-networking break between sessions will give participants a chance to participate in informal conversations or simply step away from their screens.
“The virtual format means I can now invite my entire research group to attend,” says Audrey Moores, an associate professor of chemistry at McGill University. The ability to access the meeting at no cost from anywhere in the world is already driving registration higher. The conference usually draws 600 attendees, but the virtual conference had more than 1,000 registrants within the first week of registration opening.
In addition, on Fridays beginning May 29 leading up to the June 15 conference kickoff, ACS GCI plans to present a selection of symposia via live webinar. In addition, all presenters will have the option to make their recordings available on demand after their initial broadcast. “We want to make sure audiences in different time zones can access the content in a timely way,” Kirchhoff says. On-demand viewing will be available for 90 days after the conference ends.
Details about the conference are available at www.gcande.org.