Mira’s Partnership with a World-Class Conference Organizer
With success comes new challenges. As societies grow, the art of coordinating volunteers, board members, reviewers, submitters and attendees becomes more complex.
And as the successful conference becomes more well-respected, higher level talent is attracted, which raises performance expectations, adding pressure to event organizers. It takes a leader with unique skills to thrive in such an environment.
A great team and some awesome tools don’t hurt, either.
Laura Fujino, the University of Toronto-based Director of Publications and Presentations for the International Solid State Circuits Conference (ISSCC), is the sort of organizer who thrives on pressure and lives to exceed expectations. If the quality of its team is any indicator, Fujino’s efforts have struck gold.
“The 2016 Program Committee Chair is Kevin Zhang, Executive Vice President for Intel,” Fujino said. “The Conference Committee Chair is Anantha Chandrakasan, head of the EECS Department at MIT. Both are internationally recognized leaders in their fields. We are so very grateful to have them provide their leadership and expertise.” She continued, “We are also fortunate to have the perspective of both the corporate viewpoint (Intel) and the academic (MIT).”
The ISSCC is a conference that challenges any abstract management platform and the teams that manage it. Fujino’s long-standing relationship with Mira Smart Conferencing and her Mira Project Manager, Brad Phillips, make management of submissions, reviews and publication a lot easier.
Fujino credits Mira’s success with the ISSCC to a spirit of collaboration, innovation and a willingness to be partner, rather than just another vendor. “This is complicated stuff and the board and volunteers are very busy men and women,” she said. “I talk to Brad about how to make the experience simple and clean for them. It’s so important that our process be intuitive – and it is. That’s the value of Mira.”
On first glance, the 600-700 submissions ISSCC accepts may not seem like an extraordinary number for a major conference. But these are not abstract submissions – these are full manuscripts – most of which come from industry, not academia.
What’s more, the review turnaround schedule is incredibly fast.
Submissions begin in early September and the entire program is completed by mid-October, with 200 papers accepted. An ISSCC team of five edits the papers in-house, as well The final book (and, yes, it’s a printed book) is printed and ready for delivery by January 1.
Working across three continents and many time zones, there’s absolutely no quiet time for the abstract management platform to be down for maintenance. It’s go, go, go. Fujino said she appreciates Mira’s robust software because she doesn’t have to worry about server crashes or digital communication glitches that could threaten her tight schedule.
Said Fujino, “It’s got to be robust. The committee members want instant. They don’t have time to wait for things. If something takes too long to download, they don’t have time for that. And these people are not in one place. They travel and operate across many time zones. A third of the committee is in North America, a third European, and a third in Asia. Lots of time zones, languages and culture differences.”