Organisation of EURO-k Conference (Guidelines)

If you are interested in organising a EURO-k Conference read these guidelines carefully and contact the EURO Vice President 1 (VP1@euro-online.org) who will advise and monitor the process.

Timetable of EURO-k Milestones

Years before conferenceActivityConcerned Party
4.0 Asking for bids VP1, member societies
3.5 Site inspection. Selection of bids EC, VP1
3.0 Presentation of bids member societies
  Acceptance of one of the bids EURO Council
2.5 Selection of the PC chair member society, EC, VP1
2.0 Appointment of the PC chair EURO Council
1.5 Approval of PC members nominated by the PC chair EC, VP1, PC Chair
  Conference agreement PC and OC Chairs, member society, VP1, EURO Secretary, EURO President
  Preliminary PC meeting PC, VP1
1.0 2nd PC meeting PC, VP1
0.5 3rd PC meeting PC, OC, VP1

Conference Structure

EURO-k conferences are hosted by EURO member societies. Proposals for organising EURO-k conferences are approved by the EURO Council.

Most of the affairs related to EURO-k conferences are handled by the Organising Committee (OC) and the Programme Committee (PC).

  • The OC is responsible for running all organising issues. It is chaired by a local person and member of the organising Member Society. This society decides on the structure and membership of the OC.
  • All scientific matters of a EURO-k Conference are handled by the PC. The Programme Committee (PC) is chaired by a person appointed by the EURO Council, on the nomination of the EURO Executive Committee, coming from a different country to that in which the conference is organised. All other members of the PC are nominated by the PC Chair and must be approved by the EURO Executive Committee (EC).
  • The Chairs of the OC and the PC shall maintain close cooperation with the EURO Vice President 1 and between them.

The main scientific activities in EURO-k conferences focus around scientific presentations, which are of the following types:

  • Plenary, semi-plenary, tutorial and panel sessions given by prestigious invited speakers;
  • Regular streams, defined as blocks of sessions within a thematic OR area. Sessions can be invited or contributed. Contributed paper presentations are welcomed and processed by the PC;
  • Making an Impact stream. This is a series of participative activities aimed at helping practitioners to become more effective;
  • OR Education stream focusing on best practices for teaching OR.

EURO-k conferences feature some special events, including the opening and closing sessions which should be structured as plenary sessions by mutual consent of the OC, PC, and the EC.

  • The opening session should give EURO and the host member society the opportunity to present themselves to the public. Thus the PC and OC Chairs of the conference, the President of the national OR society and the EURO President may use the opportunity to address the audience in the opening and closing sessions.
  • The presentation of the Distinguished Service Medal Award (EDSM), the Gold Medal (EGM) and the accompanying lecture of the Gold Medal laureate are scheduled as a plenary session within the opening session. In the closing session, organisers of future EURO-k and IFORS events are also given the opportunity to announce their meetings.
  • For the presentation of other prizes, the following plan is typically implemented: the presentation of the EURO Excellence in Practice Award (EEPA) finalists and the presentation of EURO Doctoral Dissertation Award (EDDA) finalists are scheduled as parallel sessions. These prizes are awarded to the winner(s) during the closing session along with the winners of the EURO Award for the Best EJOR Papers (EABEP).

Additional activities to be expected in a EURO-k Conference include:

  • A large Exhibitors Area, where editorials and companies can give visibility to their products, and participants are updated in the newest offers;
  • Presentations done by software companies to better explain the characteristics, technical aspects, and potential of their products;
  • The OC may decide to schedule visits to companies where OR is used in daily activities;
  • Student-focused activities e.g., job placement opportunities.

Preparing a bid for organising a EURO-k Conference

Please contact the EURO Vice President 1 (VP1@euro-online.org) for further details.

Application form for a EURO-k Conference (.doc file)

Site and time

  • The site of a EURO-k Conference may be a suitable place in the country of a EURO Member Society. Costs should be kept as low as possible. For this, the conference is usually held in a university or an institution providing meeting rooms at minimum or no charge.
  • The conference usually takes place in summer during the first half of July. Both the site and time of a EURO-k Conference are proposed by the organising Member Society.
  • If another organisation, e.g., INFORMS, is to be involved as well, special protocols (to be endorsed by the EURO Council) have to be used.

Proposal of Organising Committee (OC)

  • The Organising Committee (OC) is chaired by a local person and member of the organising Member Society. The OC is responsible for running all organising affairs. The OC includes among its members the Chair of the Programme Committee (PC), EURO Manager, and EURO Vice President 1.
  • The Chair of the OC shall maintain close cooperation with the EURO Vice President 1 and the Chair of the Prgramme Committee (PC), which is responsible for all scientific matters related to a EURO-k Conference. The Programme Committee (PC) is chaired by a person appointed by the EURO Council, on the nomination of the EURO Executive Committee, coming from a different country to that in which the conference is organised.

The initial budget and other financial issues

The initial budget should present the development of the relevant positions of the main items for a low, medium and high level of attendance. These must include:

  • Proposed conference fees for regular and student early and late fees (including VAT);
  • Relevant costs, including:
    • Rental and equipment of the conference site;
    • Editing and printing of the abstract booklet and final programme;
    • Organisation of meetings of the conference committees;
    • Visit by EURO Vice-President 1, and possibly EURO Manager, in the Autumn preceding the Conference;
    • Other organisational costs (mailing, secretariat, etc.).
  • The following issues must be taken into account when preparing the initial budget:
    • Reduced registration fees must be established for students and retired participants;
    • EURO provides a list of conference participants for which it will pay the registraton fees (at the early registration rates). The speakers at the plenary and semi-plenary sessions, members of the Programme Committee (PC) and Organising Committee (OC) are excluded from paying the registration fees (covered by the conference budget);
    • EURO provides a loan of 10,000 € to the OC to cover the costs incurred before registration fees come in. The loan of 10,000 € is converted into a support of 10,000 € to meet the registration fees of participants from Eastern and Central Europe (weak currency countries) at the early registration rates. The decision on how to allocate this money is exclusive to the OC;
    • The organising Member Society will remunerate EURO by paying a fee of 20 € per regular participant and 10 € per student participant to cover the required contribution to overheads as well as the use of the EURO Electronic Conference System;
    • In general, all other profits and losses would be shared equally (50% / 50%) between EURO and the host society. The host society may request different percentages in negotiation with EURO;
    • The conference accounts have to be audited by an auditor appointed by EURO; typically the EURO Treasurer. The costs of the audit will be covered by EURO.

Organising a EURO-k Conference

Use of Professional Conference Organisers (PCOs) may be advisable, if the size of the conference is expected to be very large, In order to minimise cost, the ex officio members do not, in general, attend meetings of the OC but receive papers and provide advice.

The Organising Committee (OC)

The Organising Committee (OC) is chaired by a local person and member of the organising Member Society.

    The OC is responsible for running all organising affairs, including:
    • attracting potential sponsors;
    • providing rooms and equipment for the conference, including rooms for meetings of the EURO Council, EURO Executive Committee, Journal Editors, Working Groups, future Programme Committees, and IFORS groups. All requirements will be advised by the EURO Manager;
    • developing the conference website, preferably hosted on the EURO server, which must be linked to the EURO Electronic Conference Abstract Submission System;
    • printing of the conference programme and digital access to the abstracts booklet;
    • inserting certain EURO and IFORS material free of charge into conference bags;
    • providing Internet access (for free or at least at a reasonable rate) during the conference days;
    • provision of food at lunch time and coffee beverages during the day;
    • organisation of the opening and closing sessions in consultation with the EURO Manager;
    • organisation of a social programme including the main social event (banquet), visits to tourist attractions, local entertainment events, etc. for the participants and accompanying persons;
    • organisation of book and software exhibitions;
    • providing a stand and space for EURO and IFORS exhibits free of charge;
    • providing a stand and space for the host country OR Society exhibits free of charge;
    • facilitating accommodation in different price categories for the participants;
  • The OC includes among its members the Chair of the Programme Committee (PC), EURO Manager, and EURO Vice President 1.
  • The Chair of the OC shall maintain close cooperation with the EURO Vice President 1 and the Chair of the Programme Committee (PC). At least every three months the Chair of the OC will present to the EURO Vice President 1 a brief report on the status and the current activities concerning the preparation of the conference. Not later than six months after the conference the Chair of the OC shall present to the EURO Council a report to be put on the EURO website regarding the organisation of the conference. They shall also provide a financial report and updated budget to the EURO Vice President 1 in advance of each relevant EURO Executive Committee meeting (Jan/Jul) before the Conference, with a further report prepared by the start of the Conference. The final financial report shall be submitted not later than six months after the Conference.
  • EURO provides a list of conference participants for which it will pay the registraton fees (at the early registration rates). The speakers at the plenary and semi-plenary sessions, members of the Programme Committee (PC) and Organising Committee (OC) are excluded from paying the registration fees (covered by the conference budget). Students pay a reduced fee. EURO provides a loan of 10,000 € to the OC to cover the costs incurred before registration fees come in. The loan of 10,000 € is converted into a support of 10,000 € to meet the registration fees of participants from Eastern and Central Europe (weak currency countries) at the early registration rates. The decision on how to allocate this money is exclusive to the OC.
  • The organising Member Society will remunerate EURO by paying a fee of 20 € per regular participant and 10 € per student participant to cover the required contribution to overheads as well as the use of the EURO Electronic Conference Abstract Submission System.
  • In general, all other profits and losses would be shared equally (50% / 50%) between EURO and the host society. The host society may request different percentages in negotiation with EURO.
  • The conference accounts have to be audited by an auditor appointed by EURO; typically the EURO Treasurer. The costs of the audit will be covered by EURO.

The budget and other financial issues

  • The initial budget should present the development of the relevant positions of the main items for a low, medium and high level of attendance. These must include:
    • Proposed conference fees for regular and student early and late fees (including VAT);
    • Relevant costs, including:
      • Rental and equipment of the conference site;
      • Editing and printing of the abstract booklet and final programme;
      • Organisation of meetings of the conference committees;
      • Visit by EURO Vice-President 1, and possibly EURO Manager, in the Autumn preceding the Conference;
      • Other organisational costs (mailing, secretariat, etc.).
  • The following issues must be taken into account when preparing the initial budget:
    • Reduced registration fees must be established for students and retired participants;
    • EURO provides a list of conference participants for which it will pay the registraton fees (at the early registration rates). The speakers at the plenary and semi-plenary sessions, members of the Programme Committee (PC) and Organising Committee (OC) are excluded from paying the registration fees (covered by the conference budget);
    • EURO provides a loan of 10,000 € to the OC to cover the costs incurred before registration fees come in. The loan of 10,000 € is converted into a support of 10,000 € to meet the registration fees of participants from Eastern and Central Europe (weak currency countries) at the early registration rates. The decision on how to allocate this money is exclusive to the OC;
    • The organising Member Society will remunerate EURO by paying a fee of 20 € per regular participant and 10 € per student participant to cover the required contribution to overheads as well as the use of the EURO Electronic Conference System;
    • In general, all other profits and losses would be shared equally (50% / 50%) between EURO and the host society. The host society may request different percentages in negotiation with EURO;
    • The conference accounts have to be audited by an auditor appointed by EURO; typically the EURO Treasurer. The costs of the audit will be covered by EURO.
  • The system of payment of abstract deposits and registration fees and the location of the bank accounts receiving these fees are chosen by the OC after consultation with the EURO Treasurer. Payment via all major credit cards must be accepted and clearly announced.
  • A final budget must be submitted to and approved by the EURO Executive Committee at least 12 months before the conference.
  • Initial and final budgets should present the development of the relevant positions for a low, medium and high level of attendance. Significant changes between the initial and the final budget - in particular with respect to the conference fees - should be convincingly motivated and agreed to by the EURO Executive Committee.
  • The conference accounts have to be audited by an auditor appointed by EURO; typically the EURO Treasurer. The costs of the audit will be covered by EURO.

Electronic Conference System

The EURO conference system is used for abstract submission and producing the scientific programme (and typically it should be linked to conference registration). The integrated EURO database should be used for communication with all participants. It is requested that all the abstracts be delivered electronically through the conference system which helps the PC schedule streams and sessions easily.

Website

Since conference websites provide visibility and are an important means of communication with potential participants, it is recommended that the website containing basic information be made operational two years before the conference by the local organisers. The website should preferably be hosted on the EURO server. Over time, the website is gradually improved by adding new information about the conference and later the possibility to submit abstracts and register. It is recommended to sustain a close contact with potential participants and to inform them about conference activities and dates by sending e-mails whenever it is appropriate.

Publicity Relations

In order to increase the number and quality of presentations, it is important to announce the conference early enough in an effective manner so as to create wide awareness in the global scientific community. The major task in an dissemination plan is to determine the proper timing and content of announcements. Usually preliminary announcements are prepared two years before the conference and calls for papers are prepared one year before the conference. They are distributed at different related conferences, mailed to EURO member societies, EURO Working groups, and universities. Posters are usually printed and mailed to different conference sites and universities as well. Electronic copies of these are made available on the EURO, and conference web-sites. The impact of personal efforts and personal contacs with key researchers should be considered as an important factor in increasing participation.

After a EURO-k Conference

Not later than six months after the conference the Chair of the OC shall present to the EURO Council a report to be put on the EURO website regarding the organisation of the conference. The final financial report shall be submitted not later than six months after the Conference.

Penalties

The omission of providing the registration information within three months, the omission of providing access to the Conference accounts and the final reports within six months allows EURO to apply large legal penalties to the due funds. Any controversy will be regulated where EURO is officially registered.

Agreement Preparation

EURO Vice president 1 prepares a formal agreement based on the above guidelines which is signed by the EURO President and Secretary, a representative of the organising Member Society and the Chairs of the Organising and Programme Committees at least one year before the conference. When signing this agreement the chairs of OC and PC should consider these guidelines as the basis of their commitment.

Important Dates

Although there are no general rules and the organisers have the full freedom and the authority to set these dates, based on the experiences of the last EURO-k conferences, main milestones in the conference organisation and recommended deadlines are given in the following table:

(a) The operationalisation of the website A year before the conference (latest)
(b) Abstract submission Sometime in March of the same year of the conference
(c) Notification of acceptance (b) + 2 weeks
(d) Early registration (c) + 2-3 weeks
(e) Author registration (d) + 2-3 weeks (late April, early May)
(f) Announcement of tentative conference programme Early June

The organisers are advised to monitor the process closely and extend these dates whenever necessary depending on the response from the scientific community and global economic and socio-political factors.

The Programme Committee (PC)

    • All scientific matters related to a EURO-k Conference are regulated by the PC. The Chair of the PC shall maintain close cooperation with the EURO Vice President 1 and the Chair of the OC. The Programme Committee (PC) is chaired by a person appointed by the EURO Council, on the nomination of the EURO Executive Committee, coming from a different country to that in which the conference is organised. All other members of the PC are appointed by the EURO Executive Committee.
    • The PC includes among its members the Chair of the Organising Committee (OC), the Chair of the Programme Committee (PC) of the previous EURO-k Conference, the Chair of the Programme Committee (PC) of the next EURO-k Conference once appointed, the EURO webmaster, and EURO Vice President 1. Other members of the Committee are nominated by the Chair from different EURO Member Societies. The nominations should reflect the geographic and thematic diversity of Operational Research in Europe. They are to be approved by the EURO Executive Committee. The Advisor to EURO-k Conferences will be invited to collaborate with the Committee. The Programme Committee (PC) is responsible for all scientific matters including:
      • running the Conference according to the theme, as confirmed by the EURO Council;
      • preparation of the Scientific Programme of the Conference, including plenary, semi-plenary, parallel sessions and poster sessions;
      • invitation of speakers for plenary and semi-plenary sessions;
      • the assignment of papers to sessions and the scheduling of all sessions;
      • provision in the programme of the opening and closing sessions, including the EURO Gold Medal award and EURO Distinguished Service Medal Award;
      • provision in the programme for parallel sessions accommodating the finalists of the EURO Excellence in Practice Award and the EURO Doctoral Dissertation Award. The one-presentation-per-registration regime will be overruled to the participants invited to these sessions;
      • provision in the programme for the Making and Impact and OR Education streams. Both streams are strategic to EURO and will consist of only invited sessions. The one-presentation-per-registration regime will be overruled to the participants invited to these sessions;
      • provision in the Programme for meetings of the EURO Council, EURO Executive Committee, Journal Editors, Working Groups, future Programme Committees, and IFORS groups. All requirements will be advised by the EURO Manager;
      • preparation of the Call for Papers, the Invitation Programme and the Abstracts booklet;
      • preparation of at least a special issue of a scientific journal;
      • issuing daily any changes to the programme, etc.;
      • The PC should provide a minimum time slot of a semi-plenary lecture for the IFORS-EURO distinguished lecture (IEDL). It is the responsibility of the PC to eventually enlarge this slot in order to allow for a (full) plenary lecture. The IEDL should be selected in cooperation with the IFORS President;
      • All possible modifications are permitted with the consent of the EURO Executive Committee.
    • The Chair of the Programme Committee (PC) will be supported in pursuing their responsibilities by the members of the Programme Committee (PC). 
      • Each member of the PC is assigned a set of keywords and asked to invite scientists to organise streams and sessions in those keywords. A stream is usually defined to contain at least a given number of sessions within a thematic area. In its turn, each session usually will include four presentations (at least three). The degree of flexibility and the coordination among the stream organisers, session organisers, and PC members is at the authority of the PC and to be executed according to the joint decision of the PC members.
      • The organisers of the Making an Impact and OR Education streams will be suggested by the EURO Executive Committee.
      • The PC members may empower the stream organisers to invite and accept presentations and to organise their invited sessions subject to their approval.
      • Contributed paper presentations are welcomed and processed by the PC. Once they are accepted, either they are assigned to the right invited session in coordination with the related stream organiser or they are assigned to contributed sessions.
      • The willingness and dedication of stream organisers play an important role in increasing participation and decreasing no-shows.
    • Most of the work of the Committee shall be undertaken by correspondence. The visits of the EURO Vice President 1 and committee meetings will be financed from the conference budget. The Committees will hold at least two meetings:
      • A meeting during the previous EURO-k conference or IFORS conference in order to agree on job splitting, the Programme outline and the draft Call for Papers;
      • A second meeting to finalise the Programme.

 [Latest guidelines approved July 2017] 



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