ICS Program Chairs Tasks

1.   First (ASAP): Come up with a suggested Program Committee list and submit it to the Steering Committee (SC) for approval. (The reason for SC approval is simply to ensure that conference standards are followed; for example, the conference does not allow students on our Program Committees.) We are hoping you'll suggest maybe 8-12 people, most of whom are highly visible in your area, so that they will attract your research community. If your area is one in which empirical work occurs, then please include at least 1 expert in empirical studies.

2.   Once the Program Committee is approved, the rest of the conference organization will take care of things like publicity, registration details, a web site, etc. He/she will also link to your own web sub-site, where you can provide more information specific to your ICS. Furthermore, the conference organization will choose - in collaboration with all ICS program chairs - the deadlines for paper submission, notification of acceptance of authors, and camera-ready paper submission.

3.   You'll want to suggest good keynoter(s). The General Chair will be working with the ICS chairs' suggestions to end up with approximately 2 keynoters for the conference as a whole, each of whom needs to be of interest to at least 2 ICSs. The keynote presentations will be presented at combined sessions.

Suggestions for other special events/panels/demos, etc., are also encouraged. In other words, do whatever you can to help make your ICS have a great program!

4.   Do whatever you can to encourage paper submissions. (Papers deadline is in February, precise date still being decided upon). Conference guidelines allow acceptance of no more than about 30% as full papers (8 pages length, 25 min. presentation time), so you need a minimum of 24-26 full-paper submissions to have 8 full papers, which is probably enough for about 1 day worth of symposium (allowing time for keynotes, special events, social activities, etc.) The more submissions you get, the longer your ICS can be. The expectation is that each symposium will be about 1.5 days (i.e., 36-40 submissions resulting in 12 full paper acceptances). In addition to these papers, you can accept additional poster paperss (2 pages length, poster session presentation). Poster presenters do not give talks; rather, posters will all be combined into a one-on-one opportunity and reception. If there are demo's, they will also be included in that event. However, poster authors do give a 1 or 2-minute 'advertisement' saying what their poster is about. e.g., 'We're working on a new parsing algorithm that may turn out to be more general than the other ones so far. Come see us.'

Here is a sample of how the ICSs might be scheduled if each ends up as 1.5 days. The idea here is that no 2 ICSs run exactly in parallel together -- instead, they are staggered.

So, with 4 ICSs, then we could have something like this:

where ICS 1 might be End Users, ICS 3 might be Children, ICS 2 might be Theory, and ICS 4 might be Software Engineering.

From the point of view of a calendar, the above would work out like this:

5.   When it comes time for paper acceptance decisions, there will be some papers that have widely differing reviews. Before making acceptance decisions, get the reviewers of those papers to talk about them (over email or in person) and try to come to some sort of agreement on the paper. Once this part is done, you are ready to make acceptance decisions. How you weigh various criteria to come to these decisions with your Program Committee is up to you, provided that the 30% rate is not exceeded. As in past VLs, you can accept additional submissions as posters. (Acceptance decisions are due approx. May 1). Eventually you'll arrange the accepted papers into sessions.

6.   What you don't have to do: You needn't create/administer a submissions mechanism, set up a database system to track reviews (an electronic conference management system will be installed at a central site for this purpose), do local arrangements, handle audio-visual matters, do hotel negotiations, worry about budgetary matters, deal with IEEE rules and regulations, handle registration, do publicity about the conference in general (although there will be pointers to your site, and you should contribute wording specific to your program area), worry about proceedings publication, etc. -- these matters will all be handled by others. In short, your only task is making sure you end up with a really good technical program.

Summary: What ICS Program Chairs do:

History of this document:

Nov. 29, 2001: Improved as per suggestions from Andy Schuerr and Margaret Burnett.
Oct. 13, 2000: Improved as per suggestions from Phil Cox and Stefano Levialdi.
Oct. 12, 2000: No changes suggested, made public and available to Program Chairs.
Oct. 7, 2000: Submitted to Steering Committee for change suggestions (with deadline of Oct. 11 for suggestions).
Oct. 7, 2000: Written by Margaret Burnett.