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Guidelines for IUBMB Conferences


General Remarks

A major aim of IUBMB Conferences is to raise the profile of the Union in the years between the triennial Congresses.  A Conference is an international meeting sponsored by IUBMB in conjunction with a national Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology and whenever possible a regional organisation for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology or national or other organisation for a related discipline.  The program for a Conference covers a particular aspect of biochemistry, is much less diverse in scope than a Congress but more so than the many Symposia and Interest Group meetings sponsored by the Union.

Special Features of IUBMB Conferences

  1. They present opportunities for review of advances in a limited number of topical major subareas of biochemistry and for detailed in-depth discussion of a particular segment of biochemistry.  In this way they complement the broad overall coverage of the subject that characterises the Congresses.

  2. They enhance the visibility of IUBMB in geographic regions of significant or major biochemical activity by constituting a major meeting in such areas.

  3. Adhering Bodies in major geographical regions submit or are invited to submit applications to host a Conference at least three to four years in advance of the proposed Conference.  The Executive Committee of IUBMB considers factors such as location and choice of topic in approving sponsorship of a particular application.

  4. Attendance at such Conferences is intermediate between that at IUBMB-sponsored Symposia (100-300) and IUBMB Congresses (2,500-6,000), being about 1,000-2,000 participants.

  5. A host society for a Conference selects the Organizing Committee, and forms an Advisory Committee including representatives of the IUBMB and composed of internationally distinguished biochemists from outside its country who will help identify topics for each symposium and possible speakers.

  6. A potential host organisation must provide a written statement at the time of application giving assurances that the policy of the International Council for Science (ICSU) on free circulation of scientists, including a timetable for visa application and issuance, as recommended in the 1984 Resolution on the Free Circulation of Scientists, will be observed.  This provides for written assurances that:

    1. no obstacles will be put to the granting of visas to bona fide scientists who wish to participate;

    2. information will be supplied concerning the mechanism for applications for visas and the time normally required between application for and receipt of a visa

    If the application is successful, the host organization must provide in writing an assurance to undertake to continue to observe the ICSU recommendations up to, and during, the conference.

  7. The host organisation agrees, in writing, to observe the Guidelines for IUBMB Conferences.

  8. Conference organizers should keep the Executive Committee of IUBMB well informed of the status of their planning, through the Chair of the Committee on Conferences and Congresses, and consult the Executive Committee on any matter of direct concern to IUBMB.  That Chair is to be invited early in the development of the program, so that he/she may make suggestions on the proposed program, and again in the year preceding the Conference to attend a meeting of the Conference Organizing Committee.

  9. The organizers will supply the Chair with copies of all minutes of planning meetings and of all announcements and other publications.

  10. Conference organizers present a tentative outline of the program including topics for symposia and colloquia and possible plenary lecturers to the Executive Committee of IUBMB at least two years in advance of the Conference.

  11. In preparation for their application to host a Conference, the organizers discuss with the Chair of the IUBMB Committee on Symposia and Interest Groups the nature and scope of the topic and the appropriate subareas.  The topic and time of a Conference should not conflict with any major scientific meeting.

  12. Soon after conclusion of the Conference, the organizers will supply the Chair with a full report of the Conference and recommendations for the benefit of future Conference organizers.

  13. The Chair will offer all assistance and advice to the organizers.

  14. The IUBMB logo will be displayed prominently in all announcements and publications.

Financial Matters

  1. The Union may offer a loan within reasonable limits at no interest to the organizers as seed money for the initial establishment of a Conference which would be repaid in full.

  2. Any financial profit realized by a Conference, after repayment of any loan made as in 1.1 above, shall be shared to an extent agreed by discussion before the Conference between the organizers and the IUBMB Treasurer.

  3. Registration fees are to be waived for holders of the IUBMB Distinguished Service Award and, wherever possible, for invited speakers.

  4. Registration fees are to be waived for members of the Executive Committee who are attending the Conference.

  5. The IUBMB Treasurer is responsible for discussion and negotiation on all financial matters.

Applications to host an IUBMB Conference

Applications from Adhering Bodies to host an IUBMB Conference will be reviewed by the Executive Committee of IUBMB according to the following criteria (not necessarily in this order):

  1. time since the last Conference was held in that country;
  2. contributions of that country to international biochemistry;
  3. evidence of availability of appropriate infrastructure and facilities;
  4. estimated attendance;
  5. least cost and greatest ease of travel for the majority of biochemists;
  6. recent Conferences in that same geographical area:
  7. probability of political stability in the country;
  8. probability of financial success;
  9. attractiveness of the venue.

The Executive Committee of IUBMB will usually consider all applications at one of its meetings 3 - 4 years before the Conference year and select a short list.  Those Adhering Bodies will then be invited to present their application in detail at the meeting of the Executive Meeting held in the next year.  Final selection of the host Adhering Body and site takes place at that meeting. 


EC Meeting Cape Town
17-19 November 2001