Call for Proposals to Host Internet Research 14.0 (2013)

The Executive Committee of the Association of Internet Researchers is seeking statements of interest for hosting the annual meeting of the Association in October of 2013. The Internet Research conference draws an international group of researchers and practitioners to present and discuss work at the cutting edge in understanding the social and cultural aspects of the internet. Organizations or consortia who may be interested in hosting the conference should contact Alex Halavais at vp@aoir.org.

We will provide a guide to a full proposal for those invited to apply. At this stage, we seek an indication of interest and intent. In the past, we have held the conference in North America in odd numbered years, though we would entertain strong proposals from venues elsewhere in the world, both for 2013 and 2014.

Hosting AoIR provides visibility to your institution and city from researchers from around the world, drawing a group of well known scholars to your city during the period of the conference and providing lasting connections. Geography still matters in an internet age, and hosting Internet Research represents one way of locating important centers of innovation in social computing.

The most recent conference was held in Gothenburg, Sweden (http://ir11.aoir.org/) and the upcoming conferences will be held in Seattle, USA (http://ir12.aoir.org) and Salford, UK. We generally seek hosting cities that are reasonably accessible by international visitors, and provide a range of lodging, dining, entertainment and cultural attractions within reasonable proximity of the venue.

The venue should provide both a central hall and meeting rooms for a minimum of 400 attendees, as well as the necessary infrastructure for presentations and high-speed wireless internet access. There are generally 7-8 concurrent presentation rooms over a period of 3 to 3.5 days, plus a day of 3-6 preconferences. The conference generally provides some form of onsite refreshments during the day (snacks, coffee, and in many cases lunch), as well as a banquet and receptions.

The Association generally handles registration, and will (with the aid of a program chair) provide assistance with the infrastructure for the peer review and the publication of selected papers. Members of the AoIR Executive Committee serve on the organizing committee and are involved closely with the planning and execution of the conference. The local hosts are responsible for all on-site arrangements, contracts, transportation, arrangements with local hotels or other lodging, technology, supporting staff for the event. The hosts should be willing and able to mobilize local support for the conference, including volunteers, fund-raising, and cost-sharing.

Although a full proposal is not necessary, some indication of what you could offer in terms of hosting would be appreciated. In particular:

1. Who makes up your group, who the proposed local chair would be, and your connection to internet research and AoIR.

2. Information about the venue, including recent conferences held there. We have, in the past, held AoIR in hotels and conference centers, as well as university and research campuses. Please give some indication of the layout of the facility and its proximity to lodging and dining (including less expensive options), as well as to its suitability for a conference like Internet Research.

3. Proposed dates. IR is generally held in early October, and usually over a Thursday-Saturday, with pre-conferences on a Wednesday, though there is some flexibility. It is helpful if we are able to avoid conflicts with other major conferences of interest to attendees. If we are unable to schedule your venue for 2013, do you expect you might have interest in 2014?

4. What makes your city and venue particularly attractive to the Internet Research community.
Feel free to keep your letter brief. For those sites the Executive Committee feels are suitable for the upcoming conference, we will provide organizers with instructions for a full proposal, and are happy to work with them to provide a strong proposal.

The committee will review letters of interest as they are submitted, through the end of July 2011. Questions regarding the process also will be answered publicly at the aoir.org site.

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