June is coming close and though the pandemic situation is not yet fully contained, we’re optimistic to meet with you in London and we will make sure not only to deliver a great experience, but also that it’s delivered in a safe environment. However, we’re also keeping in mind that by then not everyone will be able to travel, therefore, we’ve decided to make ElixirConf EU a hybrid event, combining both an in-person and virtual conference.
There will be two different categories of tickets going on sale at the same time - for the in-person conference and training and for virtual conference attendance.
What does a hybrid event mean? We’ll be hosting a live event for those who are just as excited as us to attend in person at the conference venue. There will be a mix of speakers attending in-person and streaming into the venue to help us create the right balance and atmosphere that you would expect from one of our events. The talks from the venue will be streamed to the virtual platform, accessible for those who attend online.
What if I can’t attend in person? To cater to people’s varying needs, we are continuing to offer this conference as a virtual event, live, on the same day as the in-person conference with talks streamed from the venue and given virtually. Over the last 18 months, we have developed a format for running virtual conferences that is full of learning, networking and social interaction. That will continue to be the cast for this event.
What if I purchase my ticket and my circumstances change? Anyone who cannot attend in person can receive a full refund by contacting us up-to a month before the conference or exchange the in-person ticket to a virtual one and receive the reimbursement of the difference in the tickets’ prices. If circumstances change and there is a legitimate legal reason you are unable to travel to attend the conference, we will happily refund you right up until the day of the conference.
Why is the ElixirConf EU going hybrid? The pandemic regulations and state of coronavirus vaccinations vary across Europe. We know that not everybody, for a variety of reasons, will be able to travel and meet at big gatherings like ElixirConf. We decided on this format, not only to make the knowledge accessible to a wide audience, wherever they are based, but also to keep the community together and make sure we keep the high standards and diversity of the content (hence virtual speakers).
Given COVID, why not go fully virtual? Whilst the situation is still fast moving, we believe that by June, the vaccine rollout throughout Europe will be sufficient to allow for events to be conducted safely. We will work with the venue to ensure participants have proof of a negative test or vaccination and to make sure the highest safety standards are in place. With these measures in place, we’re confident that we will be able to run a safe event.
Why attend the in-person event? For some of us, the social experience surrounding the conference is a big part of what makes them so special. While tools like Whova and the Toucan lounge have helped us replicate a genuine social hallway track, the experience of exploring a new city and going out for dinner long into the evening is one that is better in-person.
Will the virtual content differ from the in-person content? The talks and their content will be the same for both the virtual and in-person conferences. We’re working with our technical partners to ensure the quality of live-streamed talks from the in-person venues look and feel similar to the talks at our virtual conferences so far. The slides and the speakers will both be clearly visible to ensure it’s easy for everyone to follow along at home.
Why does the price for the virtual event differ so much for the in-person conference? The price of the physical ticket includes the expense of hiring the venue and catering for lunches and breaks throughout the day.
As a virtual attendee, how will I be able to interact with speakers and other attendees? The Whova app will be in use for both versions of the conference, allowing you to message other users and interact on the community board during breaks and on the talk’s chat during talks. The Q&A tab will allow you and in-person delegates to ask questions to speakers during presentations. To ensure there is still a dynamic networking feel at the conference, virtual attendees will have access to a virtual hallway room and will be able to talk to other attendees on camera. We will also schedule virtual sessions with exhibitors and sponsors for you to attend and be able to have a chat with them.
What time zones will be used? Virtual and in-person talks will take place at the same time on two tracks (9:00-17:00) in the British Summer Time zone.
How can I give a talk at this year’s event? Call for talks will be open according to the information on the website. We will consider talks from speakers who can attend in person and those who would prefer to present from our virtual stage. If you missed the Call for Papers, as an attendee (with a ticket) you can submit a lightning talk. More information will be available closer to the conference.
If I submit to the in-person event will I be able to alter my choice? Yes, all ticket holders will be able to change from an in-person to virtual ticket up-to a month before the conference. We will also offer refunds and the ability to switch to a virtual ticket at any time should you be unable to travel for a genuine legal reason.
If I submit to the virtual event will I be able to alter my choice? If you purchased a virtual ticket and you would like to exchange it to an in-person one closer to the event, you will have to ask for a refund (available up to 7 days before the conference for virtual tickets) and purchase the in-person ticket separately.
Will the videos from the talks be public after the event? Yes, talks from this event will be published on our YouTube channel and website following the event, some videos will be kept exclusive to attendees who purchased a ticket for the first 3 months.
We look forward to sharing an event worth celebrating with you later this year as we bring the community together, in person for a long overdue reunion. If you have any more questions, feel free to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.