Europlanet Science Congress 2021
Virtual meeting
13 – 24 September 2021
Europlanet Science Congress 2021
Virtual meeting
13 September – 24 September 2021

Guidelines for chairpersons and moderators

Conveners and co-conveners will be requested to chair and moderate their online sessions or nominate in advance one or more chairpersons to take responsibility for the session. In addition, meeting participants may be nominated by the appropriate convener(s) or asked by the meeting organisers to act as chairperson of a particular online session.

Below is a brief description of the duties of the chairpersons. Please also see the guidelines for oral presentations, the guidelines for poster presentations and the EPSC Code of Conduct.

1 Private presentations

Due to author copyright privileges, it is prohibited to share any scientific material, (including forwarding the presentation file, taking photos/screenshots and/or copying electronically), on a platform other than the EPSC2021 website when a presenter has marked their presentation as “private”. Conveners/chairpersons should reinforce this message at the top of discussions in the Slack channel for their session, as well as at the beginning of their live session discussion by showing the “Housekeeping” slide (this will be circulated prior to the meeting).

You can identify "private" presentations by a dedicated “no-sharing” icons for the the oral and posters presentations.

2 Technical assistance

Copernicus staff ( will be available throughout the duration of the virtual congress to provide support to the conveners/chairpersons and speakers in setting up and managing the live sessions.They will assist with any technical problems, should they arise.

Asynchronous discussions on Slack are handled by Europlanet Society which you can contact at in case of any questions regarding Slack.

3 Conducting the session

3.1 The weeks before the conference and last-minute duties

Please monitor your session through the session modification tool up to the scheduled presentation time.

Session programme

If you have any modifications in your session programme after uploading the final meeting programme, please forward this information directly to the conference organizer (

Late withdrawals

We kindly ask authors to withdraw abstracts as early as possible when they realize they will not be able to submit their presentation. If no presentation is uploaded for a submitted abstract and the abstract is neither withdrawn nor the convener is informed of any special circumstances, the abstract will be withdrawn from the online programme.

Checking presentations

Authors are requested to submit their presentations by 2 September 2021 so that all scientific presentations can be checked and hosted on the conference platform. If a presentation significantly contravenes the oral or poster guidelines (e.g., the video lasts over 15 minutes or the poster is in A0 format), the session convener will be asked to contact the author and ask them to resubmit.

Last-minute duties

Session modification: Log in to your session dashboard. Here, you can edit your chairpersons (using the tool SOIII – Presentation selection), add public information conference participants will see in the online programme, and find the mailing list of your session authors if there is any final information you would like to provide.

Contact your authors and chairpersons by email to remind them about the session and any other planned events that might be relevant to your session. Please check the Keynote Lectures, Guests Interviews, Community Events and other parts of the programme for content that you think might be of interest to participants in your session.

Withdrawn abstracts: Take a look at your programme online to see whether you have any abstracts marked as withdrawn.

Session template

To facilitate the preparation of the content of the live session and the format of convener's presentation, an example template has been created. Feel free to use it for your convenience. Please find the EPSC2021 session template here, along with tips/suggestions for its content (introduction, live pitches and discussion).

Please note if you have an older version of PowerPoint and are having trouble embedding pitch videos from Vimeo in your presentation, please indicate

<iframe src="vimeo_link"></iframe>

in Insert Video > From a Video Embed Code. You will need to replace "vimeo_link" with the url of the pitch video you want to embed ("", and don't forget the ").

3.2 During the virtual conference

Oral and poster discussions will be asynchronous

Conveners and/or their nominated chairpersons are asked to frequently check the asynchronous discussion forum on Slack. The Slack channels allow for interaction across multiple time zones and are accessible to registered participants throughout the meeting. The asynchronous discussions last for the full duration of the virtual conference from 13 to 24 September 2021. Conveners/chairpersons should encourage discussions by posting initial "welcome" comments and inviting questions. Please be proactive in promoting discussion throughout the meeting.

Conveners/chairpersons are also requested to act as moderators for the asynchronous discussion related to their session. Participants will be able to report any inappropriate content or behaviour they observe to the conference organizer, using the built-in reporting system. Where action is required by the convener/chairperson of the relevant session, they will be notified of the issue by the conference organizer and requested to take steps.

Synchronous live-streamed sessions

The live programme days will be split between a morning time block (09:30 to 12:15, Central European Summer Time) and an afternoon time block (14:30-16:45). The live scientific sessions are 45 minutes long and will be run in parallel, up to two sessions per time slot. The live sessions take place during the period Thursday 16 to Friday 24 September 2021.

At the start of the live session, conveners or their nominated chairpersons will summarize the content of their session. Oral and poster presentations will then shortly be presented in 1-min/1-slide by the authors and 3-min/few slides by solicitated authors. The sessions should contain sufficient time for Q&A discussions, which can then be continued asynchronously on Slack.

The chairperson is responsible for conducting the live session on time. The chairpersons should open and close the session on time. They should ensure that the speakers of the session are present and that they are able to give their presentations without disruption.

The chairpersons are also responsible for moderating the Q&A and discussions and should ensure that the time available is not dominated by one individual. Chairpersons are expected to ensure that discussion in the session is diverse and representative of the full range of research submitted for their session, as well as considerate of the gender, nationality and career ages of the contributing authors and community attending. While constructive criticism of presentations is welcome, the chairperson should not tolerate bullying or patronizing behaviour – early career researchers may be presenting for the first time, and every participant deserves to be treated fairly and with respect. Any poor behaviour can be closed down by courteously asking the individual to make their point and reminding them of the EPSC2021 code of conduct.

EPSC2021 will provide training for live session chairpersons. Presentations marked "private" may be mentioned in the live session, but no details should be given of their scientific content beyond what is included in the publicly-available abstract.

Conveners/chairpersons are requested to start the session by showing a “Housekeeping” slide with a reminder of the EPSC Code of Conduct and other important information for participants.