Doctoral students must be given the opportunity to present their results regularly. This was one of the reasons why the Electrochemistry Division of the GDCh (German Chemical Society) did not want to completely cancel their “Electrochemistry” meeting scheduled to be held at the end of September 2020. They had two months to develop and implement a new concept for the online conference. A special challenge was to integrate a poster session. S. van Wickeren, K. Kösters, Z. Zhou, B. Ying, Meet Battery Research Center, Münster, Germany, share their experiences of how a poster session could work at a digital conference.
The conference team decided to use WordPress as an open-source system for the poster website. The program is user-friendly and at the same time offers sufficient design freedom. Knowledge of a programming language is not required. Each team member was responsible for one subpage of the poster homepage. Via categories and keywords assigned to each poster, users could easily find posters of interest.
Each poster page included the title of the poster, information about the authors, the poster itself, and an abstract. Visitors could post comments on each poster both anonymously and with their names. The authors recommend stimulating discussion among the participants in online poster events. One way of doing this would be for each poster prize winner to name a question that he or she found particularly exciting. A prize for the best question could then be awarded among those named. Other ideas include that there could be a virtual meeting room for each poster, where the poster authors answer questions at a certain time. Posters could also be presented in elevator pitches, or conference participants could be invited to participate in discussions on specific topics.
What was not ideal this time was that many posters were submitted in portrait format, but landscape format would have been the better choice on a computer screen. In addition, WordPress does not accept PDF files, so the team had to convert each of these posters to an image file. This resulted in a loss of resolution.
- Tagungen und Corona. Quer- statt Hochformat (in German),
S. van Wickeren, K. Kösters, Z. Zhou, B. Ying,
Nachr. Chem. 2020.