Convention (meeting)

In a meeting or a conference is a gathering of people who work in a particular subject area. Both terms are often used interchangeably; during a convention is, however, a multi-day event with many participants during the session ( named accordingly) is usually one day and may have a smaller group of participants. Likewise, common names are conference, symposium, and for specific occupations the Convention.

Meetings are part of the MICE sector (Meetings, Incentives, Conventions, Events ) in the tourism industry.

For the nomenclature

The different naming conventions, conferences, etc. treated among others, the Munich scientists Eberhard Gugg in his work The Congress - travel ( 1972). He divided the variety of related terms such as

  • Congress, meeting, meeting, General Assembly, symposium, synod, etc.
  • Hearing, Advisory, Research - Experts Forum, colloquium, negotiation,
  • Working, working, discussion group, forum discussion, Roundtable, meeting, meetings,
  • Course, course, Lernstatt, ideas exchange, training, training, workshop
  • Session, Poster Session, Commission, etc.

Into the following five main groups:

¹) In addition to the major events are still terms like General Assembly (General Assembly), General Session, Annual Meeting, and to perform similar.

²) The current use of language differs in (3, 4): The term conference can also be a small meeting ( see, eg, conference and tutorials), while Symposium mainly for particularly representative, usually a larger events as oe is used.

Sequence and organization

Scientific congresses and symposiums of research and professional societies are usually more than one day. If this is a once- yearly event, they are often referred to as the " Annual Meeting " (see also General Assembly).

Important points larger program of scientific conferences are:

  • At the beginning, a thematic overview ( Keynotes ) of a prominent scientist or several invited papers
  • In the body of the individual presentations on current research and further or new developments; In full-page and multi-day conferences, this part is divided into several sessions, as their chairmen act usually recognized scientists,
  • And at major events (from about 1000 participants ) in parallel sessions topics.

In addition, often take place:

  • Companies Exhibitions ( company presentations at an exhibition for networking with customers and to attract new customers )
  • Annual meetings of the committees and working groups of the conference theme
  • Field trips to farms, cultural and natural monuments around
  • Social program, socializing.

The reason for attending meetings or conferences need not be exclusively the will to abide in a topic to date. Rather, a meeting is also frequently used as an opportunity to meet new people and thus establish important contacts and to maintain. In some professions regular participation in meetings is also required by law.

Preparation of meetings

For the professional preparation of a meeting usually a committee of renowned experts and governing body chairman is formed, it is often called Scientific organizing committee or SOC and is occupied depending on the design of the conference either from the regional language area or internationally.

The local organization, however, assumes a Local Organizing Committee (LOC ), composed of predominantly Employees of the Promoter and younger scholars. It is among other things responsible for the infrastructure in place for the Conference papers and the conference office.

The submitted papers for presentation (see call for papers ) a technical evaluation are subjected to today mostly to the Commission of Experts often approach also attracts foreign experts. The submitted " Oral presentations" (time limit for large conferences about 15 minutes) often have to be diverted due to time constraints on Poster Sessions. Posters are indeed generally seen as less important, but not applicable in general, the inspection if they are denominated in more than one author.

Additional program

In addition to the lectures and accompanying activities almost all meetings provide further events such as field trips and social events. These often include:

  • Workshops and tutorials
  • Conference -related field trips and company visits
  • Panel discussions, development of resolutions.

See also: Conference protection, the conference office.


Since the Local Committee ( LOC) a meeting usually responsible for local infrastructure and information, it must be after the end of the conference a few weeks remain active. Important tasks include:

  • Updating list of participants
  • The final statement of financial
  • Thank you letter to sponsors, policy makers, etc.
  • Any participation confirmations, emails, website info, etc.
  • And partly the creation and printing of the proceedings.

The Proceedings ( increasing under the name of Proceedings ) but usually edited by a publisher - committee, which conducts a rule of / Chairman of the SOC.


With unconference, ad- hoc non- conference BarCamp or a conference, congress or a meeting is called, which develop in a conscious shift away from traditional forms of organization without pre-established topic, and without separation between the audience and presenters.

The idea goes back to an observation by Tim O'Reilly in 2003. He noted that in traditional conferences, the coffee breaks represent by far the most productive phases. Thus, he explained the pauses to the actual conference and called 2005 the first " FooCamp " ( Friends Of O'Reilly ) at Socialtext in Palo Alto as an ad -hoc non- conference to life. This was completely designed by the participants without any stipulations in self-organization, to learn in an open, non - discriminatory environment and share knowledge. The organizer presented only the spaces, infrastructure and food for the participants.

For unconferences four basic rules apply:

  • Everyone is welcome, the event is open to all interested
  • All nodes are equal individuals in an open community
  • Leadership is not given but can arise from anywhere
  • There are no spectators, everyone is an active participant

It is to this day the world a variety of formats for unconferences emerged, such as:

  • ArtCamp
  • BarCamp - the original and first open Unkonferenzformat according to Tim O'Reilly's FooCamp; often (but by no means only ) with a strong IT affinity of the participants
  • BibCamp - for Librarians
  • Bleibgesund Camp - Personal Health
  • Book Camp - Books 2.0
  • CarCamp - All about cars
  • Care Camp - around care and support
  • CloudCamp - All about Cloud Computing
  • Communication Camp - Marketing and Fundraising
  • Corporate Learning Camp
  • Dialogue camp - for Internet and data protection
  • DevCamp - for developers
  • ECommerceCamp
  • EduCamp - for teachers, educators, media educators
  • Fbcamp - All about Facebook
  • Photo Camp
  • Grill Camp - for BBQ fanatic
  • Gpluscamp - All about Google
  • Hotel Camp
  • HR BarCamp
  • Knowledge Camp
  • LawCamp
  • MakerJam
  • Mobile Camp
  • MobileMonday - for mobile enthusiasts
  • MUXCamp - Mobile User Experience
  • RootCamp - Open Source issues for Admins
  • Screencast Camp - about Audio and Video
  • SEACamp - for online marketing specialists
  • Social Camp
  • Soul Camp - meditation, yoga, and other practices
  • SpaceUp
  • Startup Weekend
  • Tourist Camp
  • TYPO3camp - for TYPO3 developers and users
  • Video Camp - Storytelling in the Web video