Information for Organizing a New England Renaissance
Each year, New England-area scholars plan a New England Renaissance Conference and host it at a local campus. By organizing a conference, scholars can develop research and teaching interests and help build community among colleagues in the region. To learn about how to plan a conference, please review the guidelines below. For more information, please contact NERC co-presidents Touba Ghadessi (firstname.lastname@example.org and Yuen-Gen Liang (email@example.com).
Guidelines for Conference Organizers
A New England Renaissance Conference should:
- Address a theme that appeals to a variety of scholars
- Include presentations from multiple historical regions
- Include presentations from multiple disciplines
- Open the opportunity to present to New England-area scholars
Organizers of a New England Renaissance Conference are encouraged to:
- Circulate calls for papers via the NERC listserv and other channels
- Include graduate student presenters and consider graduate student panels
- Consult the NERC’s archive of programs to learn about recent themes and formats
- Consult with past organizers regarding budgeting and other organizational matters
- Explore alternative session formats such as workshops, roundtables, etc.
- Conference organizers should submit a proposal including an abstract describing the theme, its contribution to the field, its impact on the New England scholarly community, and a timeline for organizing
- The president or appropriate dean of the host institution should issue a formal invitation to the NERC president(s) to hold a conference on their campus
- Organizers create their own organizing structure (formal, informal, one-person, committee, etc.). The organizers accept responsibility for producing the conference
- Organizers should recruit speakers. A keynote may also be invited if desired.
- In addition to scholarly sessions, the conference should also include: A) staffed desk for registration, name tags, programs, etc. B) One meal (whether dinner or luncheon) for those who have made reservations. C) For a Friday afternoon through Saturday conference, some provision should be made for entertainment (e.g., music or theater) on Friday evening. For a Saturday-only conference, there should be an opportunity for informal conversation over refreshments following the last formal event.
- The organizers should seek institutional support to help underwrite the conference. The organizers may include the cost of dinner or luncheon as part of a modest registration fee (preferably discounted for students). Please note that NERC has no operating budget and therefore cannot contribute to any cost of the conference.
- At least nine months before the conference: establish a weekend date for the conference and publish the date in appropriate listservs, newsletters, and websites of learned societies
- At least four months before: circulate a CFP
- At least two months before: publicly announce the date and place of the conference
- At least three weeks before: publicly distribute program information including: A) information on conference sessions; B) registration form including line-items to pre-pay for optional meals or entertainment; C) travel instructions; D) information on local options for overnight lodging.
- Following the conference, the program director will forward to the NERC President a file (electronic, paper, or both) of the NERC program.