This page contains information to help members of the EGU Programme Committee during the various stages of building the programme for the General Assembly.

  1. Structure of the programme committee
  2. Building the session programme
    1. Skeleton programme
    2. Public call-for-sessions
    3. Session programme finalization
  3. Public call for abstracts
  4. PCI – abstract implementation & session tagging
  5. PCII – scheduling
    1. Scheduling virtual PICO
    2. Award and solicited talks
    3. Division meetings
  6. PCIII – presentation sequencing
    1. PCIII – Finalize SOIII if not finished by session conveners
    2. PCIII – Final check
    3. PCIII – Letter of schedule
  7. Before and during the conference

1. Structure of the programme committee

The EGU Programme Committee (PC) has the following members:

  • EGU PC chair;
  • EGU President, EGU Vice-President, EGU General Secretary, EGU Treasurer, EGU Executive Secretary, Copernicus Managing Director, and Copernicus Meetings Conference Manager;
  • Programme group chairs;
  • PC Officers for Media and Communications as well as for Early Career Scientists.

Each programme group (PG) includes the following:

  • PG chair;
  • PG scientific officers;
  • PG conveners, authors, and participants.

The PG scientific officers and the PG chair for each PG are responsible for organizing the General Assembly programme for their PG.

2. Building the session programme

The EGU General Assembly session programme is organized into several programme groups and their respective sessions. The session programme is built in three steps following the timing in the deadlines & milestones table.

  • Call-for-skeleton programme: the PG chairs are asked to implement sub-programme groups in their respective PG to guide session submission. The sub-programme groups can be adjusted during the later phase of session programme finalization.
  • Public call-for-session proposals: the public is invited to suggest sessions. Information for future conveners and guidelines for the call-for-sessions can be found in the convener guidelines and rules.
  • Session programme finalization: the PG chairs and their scientific officers are asked to compile their session programme from suggested sessions. They can solicit late sessions to fill possible thematic gaps in the programme.

2a. Skeleton programme

The call-for-skeleton programme tool is available via the Copernicus Office dashboard for PC members called "PC Overview", and the corresponding links will be provided by email. In this phase, PG chairs are asked to define sub-programme groups.

2b. Public call-for-sessions

Guidelines for session proposal can be found in the convener guidelines and rules. The session proposal form contains the following items:

  • Session title and description.
  • Conveners: conveners are entered by first name, last name, and email. If these data match an existing user ID, they are connected to this ID, else they are assigned a new ID. Please register (co-)conveners that already have an ID with the email address associated with that ID. This is to avoid multiple IDs for the same person and associated login problems. Conveners and participants can update their user account and change email address at https://administrator.copernicus.org/personal_data. We strongly encourage convener teams to reflect (i) multiple countries and institutes, (ii) different career stages, and especially include early career scientists (ECS), and (iii) gender diversity. It is optionally possible to identify (co-)conveners as ECS. Sessions need at least two active conveners (1 convener and 1 co-convener) and can have a maximum of 5 conveners (1 convener and 4 co-conveners). Our rule is a maximum of 3 (co-)convenerships total per person, with one as lead convener. One additional (co-)convenership for US or GDB is allowed. Short courses are exempted from the rule on number of (co-)convenerships.
  • Keywords: conveners are asked to select keywords. This selection can be adjusted during session programme finalization. The keywords are used to identify potential session similarity and the main target is inter-programme group overlap. Keywords are not used to characterize sessions for online search tools.
  • Inter- and Transdisciplinary Sessions (ITS): sessions that are truly inter- and/or transdisciplinary can be suggested as an ITS programme. Please carefully check the guidelines.
  • Virtual PICO sessions (vPICO): conveners can suggest their session as a virtual PICO session. This became obsolete for vEGU21: Gather Online where all scientific sessions follow the vPICO format.
  • Poster-only sessions: sessions that are poster-only are to be marked by adding "(poster-only)" to the session title (there is no flag in the session proposal form). This became obsolete for vEGU21: Gather Online where all scientific sessions follow the vPICO format.
  • Cooperation between PGs: conveners can suggest other PGs for co-organization. The PG chair and officers need to follow up on these suggestions during session programme finalization.
  • Session co-sponsoring: conveners can suggest co-sponsoring of their session by colleague scientific organizations. The co-sponsorship's status should be given as proposed or approved by the colleague organization. The PG chair and officers need to follow up on these suggestions during session programme finalization.

2c. Session programme finalization

After the open call for session proposals, PG chairs and their scientific officers are asked to finalize their session programme. Please pay specific attention to the following points:

  • Finalization: after the finalization of this tool, further changes can only be implemented by Copernicus Meetings. The recommendation is not to finalize until the autumn PC meeting.
  • Permissions: science officers serving as sub-programme group chairs can only see and modify sessions and session proposals of their sub-programme group(s) and adjust the respective sequence. The entire list of sessions and session proposals of all sub-programme groups is only available for programme group chairs.
  • Ordering of sessions: all sessions in the programme (i.e. your own and co-organized sessions) can be moved to any position in your programme, including the positioning into sub-programme groups. This is simply by drag-and-drop.
  • Session numbering: the session numbers will be assigned automatically upon finalization of the tool based on (a) the affiliation of sessions to sub-programme groups of their leading PG and (b) the sequence of sessions within their sub-programme groups. Thereby, the session number contains a running number within the sub-programme group of the leading PG (e.g. BG6.4) as well as ITS (e.g. ITS3.6/NH2.3), whereas PGs serving as co-organization partners will not be assigned a running number (e.g. CL7.8, co-organized by AS5).
  • New sessions: the PG chair and officers can upload new session proposals to fill thematic gaps in the session programme that they build from the public session proposals.
  • Session implementation: please carefully check convener diversity, session co-organization, and session co-sponsoring (more below).
  • Conveners: as far as possible, please check that convener teams reflect (i) multiple countries and institutes, (ii) different career stages, and especially include early career scientists, and (iii) gender diversity. Sessions need at least two active conveners (1 convener and 1 co-convener) and can have maximum of 5 conveners (1 convener and 4 co-conveners). Our rule is a maximum of 3 (co-)convenerships in total per person, with one as lead convener. One additional (co-)convenership for US or GDB is allowed. Short courses are exempted from the rule on the number of (co-)convenerships. When assigning (co-)conveners to sessions, the tool might alert you once a person violates this rule.
  • EDI – Equality, diversity, and inclusion: EGU's EDI working group introduced in 2020 a flag for sessions with convener teams fulfilling the 3 EDI criteria on gender, career stage, and origin. Therefore, when implementing sessions, these 3 criteria are explicitly asked and must be replied through yes or no. If a session fulfils all 3 criteria, the EDI logo will be shown at the session number in the session programme. Since the 3 EDI questions were introduced only in August 2020, some session proposals might not have the corresponding answers given by the session proposer. In any case, you can adjust the answers upon implementation.
  • Keywords: keywords selected by conveners can be adjusted. The keywords are used to identify potential session similarity and the main target is inter-programme group overlap. Keywords are not used to characterize sessions for online search tools. Typing in the keyword box will bring up suggestions from the EGU keyword list.
  • Session similarity: if a significant number of keywords or part of the session title and description is similar for two or more sessions, these sessions are listed as potentially similar, with the option to contact the involved parties to agree on a merger. Please carefully check the section headlined "session similarity" to identify sessions with a potential overlap in topics. Session mergers are possible within and between programme groups. It is strongly encouraged to build sessions that are distinct and/or complementary. Taking the consistent feedback of participants into consideration, sessions should not be too similar. This has caused confusion in the past.
  • Virtual PICO sessions (vPICO): identify Virtual PICO sessions in the session implementation form. Please note that conveners can already have suggested their session as a virtual PICO session. These sessions will be shown as vPICO sessions during abstract submission, and abstracts submitted to these sessions are automatically classified with vPICO (not oral or poster) preference. This became obsolete for vEGU21: Gather Online where all scientific sessions follow the vPICO format.
  • Poster-only sessions: sessions that are poster-only are to be marked as such through the corresponding checkbox. This became obsolete for vEGU21: Gather Online where all scientific sessions follow the vPICO format.
  • Implementation of cooperation: if two or more PGs have a significant and active interest in the topics of a session, these PGs can co-organize this session. It is implied that conveners with a link to the different programme groups are involved in the session. Session co-organization is initiated in the session implementation form. The suggestions by conveners for co-organization are listed in the implementation form. The PG that is leading the session sends co-organization requests to other PGs. These proposals for co-organization can be accepted or rejected by the other PG. In the case of acceptance, the session is organized by all cooperation partners and placed in their programmes. The leading PG will take primary responsibility for scheduling the session. In terms of abstract statistics, the session is connected to the leading programme group. Union Symposia and Great Debates cannot be co-organized.
  • Implementation of co-sponsoring by colleague organizations: the EGU encourages session endorsement by other colleague organizations as a means of strengthening ties and encouraging collaboration. Conveners can suggest co-sponsoring during session submission and these suggestions are shown in the session implementation form. The decision for session co-sponsoring lies with the PG chair. Please check the following: (i) session co-sponsoring is reciprocal, meaning that your PG will co-sponsor a similar session at a meeting of the colleague organization (the convener teams do not need to be identical), (ii) the session has conveners from both organizations, and (iii) the colleague organization agrees to session co-sponsoring. Session endorsement is intended for colleague scientific organizations and does not imply funding. An endorsing organization should furthermore not influence the work of the conveners or the content of the session.
  • Make sure abstract submission is enabled for the session. Short courses, Great Debates, and Townhall meetings should disable abstract submission.
  • Inter- and Transdisciplinary Sessions (ITS): session proposals with a truly inter- and/or transdisciplinary scope might have been suggested to the ITS programme. In the session programme finalization form, ITS proposals are handled as follows: before the ITS committee can implement ITS proposals, they first must indicate whether they agree on the eligibility for an ITS session or not. In parallel, the proposed scientific leading PG chair must also indicate whether they agree on the eligibility or not. If both agree on the eligibility, the ITS proposal becomes truly an ITS proposal and can be implemented into the ITS session programme by the ITS committee. If both parties deny the eligibility of the proposal for ITS the session proposal is moved to the PG of the proposed scientific leader for further handling (implementation as an own session or rejection of the proposal). If the ITS committee and the proposed scientific leading PG disagree on the eligibility of the proposal, they must first sort this out before either party can proceed with the handling of the proposal.

3. Public call for abstracts

The call for abstracts for vEGU21 opens on 3 November 2020 and has a deadline on 13 January 2021, 13:00 CET. Please assist your conveners during the call for abstracts by for example advertising the entire session programme in your programme group.

Conveners can solicit one presentation for their session. To this purpose, each session can generate one transaction number (TAN) in their session modification tool to provide to the author submitting the solicited presentation. Each programme group chair has in addition a limited number of extra TAN that they can assign to sessions to allow an additional solicited abstract. For example, sessions that can be expected to receive a large number of abstracts can make a case for an additional solicited abstract.

4. PCI – abstract implementation & session tagging

  • Convener tool SOI for abstract implementation: in session organization phase I, conveners review abstracts in their session. They can transfer abstracts to another session or upload late abstracts. They can also discuss and undertake session merges.
  • Session threshold: sessions with a small number of abstracts (5 or less) will be cancelled. Authors are informed and asked to indicate a new session for their abstract.
  • Convener tool SOII for session tagging: during session organization phase II, conveners give information on among others no-overlap and back-to-back requests, and estimated desired room size.
  • Finalize SOI and SOII if not finished by session conveners: after the conveners' deadlines for SOI and SOII have expired, you will be asked to finalize the SOI and SOII tools for your PG sessions that are still open (i.e. conveners did not finish). Detailed instructions are provided within the PCI tool.
  • Accept or reject late abstracts in your PG: during SOI, conveners can still upload late abstracts. This is meant as a service for authors that could not make the deadline. Late abstracts have an increased abstract processing charge. Abstracts sent by authors during PCI or at a later stage cannot be accepted. PG chairs will have to accept or reject the late abstracts uploaded by conveners.
  • Session similarity: if a significant number of keywords or words in the session title and description are similar for two or more sessions, these sessions are listed as potentially similar, with the option to contact the involved parties to agree on a merger. Please carefully check sessions that are flagged as similar. Session mergers are possible within and between programme groups. It is strongly encouraged to build sessions that are distinct and/or complementary.
  • Session mergers: sessions that received few submissions or sessions that are very similar in scope can be merged. Conveners can merge sessions in SOI. PG chairs can also merge sessions via the SOI tool as long as the tool is open. After informing the authors and giving them some time to request a transfer of their abstract to a different session, please follow this procedure:
    1. Discuss which session will form the basis for the new session.
    2. Update the title, abstract, and list of conveners of the base session.
    3. Mark all abstracts in the other session for movement into the new session.
    4. Accept all those abstracts in the new session. The result is that the base session for the merge now contains the abstracts of both sessions, while the other session contains no abstracts and can be withdrawn (i.e. removed).
    It is recommended that the convener list, session title, and description be adapted in the case of a session merger. This is to guarantee the best representation of the ideas, topics, and targeted communities. While session title and description can be adjusted by any convener or co-convener of the (new) base session through the session modification tool, the co-convener list can only be adjusted by the main convener of the (new) base session through the same tool. The rule for the number of conveners is valid also for merged sessions (sessions need at least two active conveners, 1 convener and 1 co-convener, and can have a maximum of 5 conveners, 1 convener and 4 co-conveners).
  • Rejected abstracts: in the PCI tool, you are asked to review the abstracts rejected by a convener for possible acceptance in one of your sessions. Please check carefully whether the abstract is a good fit.
  • Similar abstracts: please check those contributions in which an analysis found substantial similarities to other submissions. Double submissions should be withdrawn.
  • Abstract acceptance: as part of PCI, authors will be informed about the acceptance of their contribution by a letter of acceptance. This letter does not yet state the form of presentation.

5. PCII – scheduling

5a. Scheduling virtual PICO

Within the PCII tool, you are asked to schedule the vPICO sessions led by your PG by assigning time blocks. Virtual PICO sessions are scheduled in blocks of 20 abstracts. Conveners in SOIII will use the PCII results to implement their sequence of the vPICO presentations. When scheduling, please pay attention to time conflicts (you will see a pop-up during scheduling) and to convener requests. SOII requests from conveners are available for download in the PCII tool. Do not finalize PCII until the February PC meeting.

5b. Award and solicited talks

Conveners will set the status of solicited talks in vPICO sessions in SOIII. Please communicate with them. Authors (first and co-authors) cannot have a solicited presentation in a session they (co-)convene. Division medal lectures are scheduled for 60 minutes (including time for awarding the medal and for questions). Arne Richter Award for Outstanding Early Career Scientists lectures are 30 minutes (including time for awarding the medal and for questions). Division outstanding Early Career Scientist Award lectures can be 15 or 30 minutes (including time for awarding the medal and for questions). Different from in-person General Assemblies, vEGU21 will schedule all medal and award lectures outside of scientific sessions since scientific sessions are all organized in the vPICO format.

5c. Division meetings

Your division meeting has been pre-scheduled, but you can reschedule. However, if you move your division meeting, please look closely at potential clashes with Union medal lectures and editorial board meetings that are relevant for your division. These are marked in the overview that can be downloaded from the PC-and-council meeting page. Division meetings are under Feedback and Administration Meetings (FAM).

6. PCIII – presentation sequencing

6a. Finalize SOIII if not finished by session conveners

After the conveners' deadline for presentation sequencing has expired, you will be asked to finalize the SOIII tool for your PG sessions that are still open. Please follow the guidelines for SOIII in the convener guidelines.

6b. Final check

Please make sure that the conveners have correctly scheduled your division medal lectures with 60 minutes and Arne Richter outstanding ECS award lectures with 30 minutes. Also check that vPICO sessions have chairpersons assigned.

6c. Letter of schedule

After all PGs have finalized PCIII, Copernicus Meetings runs the meeting programme generator. Then, all abstracts receive their final scheduling and authors are informed about the details of their presentation by a letter of schedule.

7. Before and during the conference

  • Do stay in touch with your conveners at all steps of session and programme organization. The PG mail tool allows contacting conveners of all or selected sessions.
  • Abstract authors within your PG can be contacted through the PG mail tool to highlight for example the division medal lecture, the division meeting, meet EGU slots, and more. Though please do not spam participants.
  • Ensure to use gender neutral language in all communications and also encourage conveners to do so. Please use the pronouns they and their.
  • More information on last minute tips and duties are in the convener guidelines and rules.