The following presentation formats apply to conference presentation proposals. Applicants are asked to choose the most suitable format in making their submission.

1. Short Paper

Duration: 25 minutes
Procedure: Up to a 20 minute presentation, with time for questions, as negotiated by presenter and chair
Content: A formal, thematic, presentation focused on an issue facing the field of evaluation
Abstract: Details the focus of the paper and the way(s) in which it contributes to the body of knowledge in the field of evaluation.

2. Long Paper

Duration: 50 minutes
Procedure: Two 20 minute presentations on a related topic or one 40 minute presentation, with time for questions, as negotiated by presenter(s) and chair.
Content: The long paper session is a formal thematic presentation focused on an issue facing the field of evaluation. It gives more time for in depth exploration of the ideas presented and may comprise multiple presentations (linked papers) or a single presentation. The long paper mode is also suited to a single expert lecture. If you have multiple experts on the same topic, please submit a panel session instead.
Abstract: Details the focus of the paper and the way(s) in which it (they) contribute(s) to the body of knowledge in the field of evaluation. Include two abstracts for a two-paper session.

3. Panel

Duration: 50 minutes
Procedure: A Panel session can involve up to 5 speakers exploring a topic related to a conference sub-theme. The format allows speakers to weave together innovative ideas, explore concepts from multiple perspectives and critically reflect on issues facing evaluation. These sessions are  interactive, with about 30% of the session dedicated to audience participation. This might be through:
•    question and answer time
•    discussion or other facilitated activity
•    debate on a topic
Content: A panel session is a group presentation of a suite of ideas, innovative methods, or discussion by experts on a topic of interest of relevance to the conference theme
Abstract: Includes a description of the topic and its importance, the panellists and their backgrounds in relation to the topic. You also need to describe the structure of the session, including how you will facilitate audience participation. 

4. Skill Building Session

Duration: 50 minutes
Procedure: In a skill building session, the presenter delivers a demonstration or mini-workshop that enables attendees to see and/or practice a skill, concept or tool. Each session needs a clear learning objective.
Content: Skills building sessions can focus on foundational evaluation skills and capabilities, advanced topics or new tools (see list of suggested topics here).
Abstract: Includes a discussion of why this skill/tool/concept is important, how the presenter will teach the skill within a short time frame, and whether it is foundational or advanced.

5. Interactive Session

Duration: 50 minutes
Procedure: We invite you to nominate an interactive session formats (which could include the World café, campfire session or may adopt another format that you nominate).

  • a. World cafe: There are many variations of this well-known participatory format. Attendees are seated at tables. After introductions, the tables explore a big question for 10-15 minutes. Once time is up, all-but-one of the table’s participants move to another table and repeats the process. The participant who remains – the table host – shares what was previously discussed. After 3 rounds, the key points from each table are presented to the wider group for discussion. Presenters are expected to frame the questions explored in the world café sessions and facilitate sessions.
  • b.  Campfire session: Unlike traditional long and short paper formats in large rooms, the Campfire sessions are more intimate involving smaller groups. The format starts with a leader/facilitator speaking for 10-15 minutes about a topic then helps to foster group discussion and peer-to-peer learning for the remainder of the session.
  • c. Other interactive format: The aes18 committee welcomes proposals for other interactive formats.

Content: The content should clearly relate to the conference theme of Transformations and should relate to one or more of the sub-themes.
Abstract: Includes the topic for discussion, the purpose of the interactive session, the type of interactive session, how the presenter will solicit feedback from attendees, and how the information generated in the session will be distributed to participants after the session.

Note: On acceptance of a proposal for an interactive session, the aes18 committee may wish to collaborate with the facilitators to suggest amendments to increase alignment with other conference content.

6.    Ignite Sessions

Procedure: The aes18 committee is excited to be bringing the Ignite presentation format to the 2018 conference. Ignite presentations run for exactly five minutes using 20 slides that auto-advance every 15 seconds. The result is a short and informative presentation – which can often also be very entertaining! For examples of the format see
Content: Ignite presentations should be visually appealing and 20 slides long. They could be focused on telling the story of an evaluation or could introduce a tool or technique. They should relate to the conference theme in some manner or other.
Pitch: Provide brief details of the topic of your ignite presentation in 100 words only (entered in the Abstract field). This should be written in an appealing manner that provides a ‘pitch’ for why people should come to your session.

In addition to providing an abstract for your presentation, as an optional extra, you can also submit a link to a video recording of your 5-minute ignite talk. This video will not be shown at the conference and need not be high quality – a smart phone recording is fine. Provide a URL to your video published on either YouTube or Vimeo.

The committee encourages less-experienced presenters to also consider presenting using the Ignite-style format. The American Evaluation Association Potent Presentations Initiative provide a training webinar and other guidance on how to prepare an Ignite presentation.