The call for symposia is now closed.

The Conference will be held from 25 November to 29 November 2019 at the Hotel Grand Chancellor, Launceston, Tasmania.

Symposia are the scientific centrepiece of the Ecological Society of Australia and we encourage organisers to contribute proposals with exciting combinations of speakers.

We welcome submissions for symposia from across the breadth of ecology. Proponents should provide a short rationale for a theme, noting its potential interest to ecologists, as outlined in the guidelines for submission below. We particularly encourage submissions that relate to theme of the conference: Ecology: science for practical solutions.

Symposia Overview

Symposia will run in parallel sessions, within the Scientific Program

Most symposia will be of 2 hours duration; at the discretion of the Scientific Committee (potentially 8 x 15 minute blocks but see the below paragraph).

Each symposium will include both invited speakers and contributed presentations; we suggest organisers secure invitees to make up approx. two-thirds of the speakers in the symposium and the remainder will be selected from proffered abstracts.

Organisers may think laterally about the structure of their symposium. We encourage a mixture of approaches beyond the traditional 8 x 15 minute presentations within symposia; however, we request that alternative formats use multiples or fractions of 15 minute blocks to ensure that attendees are able to move between parallel sessions if they wish. For example a panel led discussion may begin with a series of 5 minute speed talks (in multiples of three) by panel members followed by a longer period for discussion, and finish with a 15 minute structured synthesis.

Organisers of symposia that are accepted will be asked to review abstracts that have been proffered under their symposium, and are responsible for chairing their Symposium.

Final allocation of presentations to each symposium will be at the discretion of the Scientific Committee.

Please note that all symposia organisers and presenters (including invited presenters) are required to register and pay to attend ESA 2019

All presenters in a symposium, including invited speakers are required to submit their abstract through the online abstract submission system, and to ensure that the abstract is in the correct format and accompanying information is supplied.

The conference policy of one presentation per person applies to Symposia, Plenary and all sessions. This applies to the presenter; co-authoring multiple abstracts is fine.

If you have any queries with the submission process, please contact the Conference Secretariat on +61 2 6198 3218, or by email to

Process and Criteria for Symposia

All proposals will be reviewed by the ESA 2019 Scientific Sub-committee or expert reviewers appointed by the committee. Organisers will be advised by email whether their proposal has been accepted. Proposals should specifically address the following criteria:

Scientific Strength

• Does your proposal offer significant contributions to ecological understanding?
• Does your proposal present innovative or interdisciplinary approaches across sub-disciplines of ecology or with other related disciplines?
• Does your proposal have sufficient broad appeal to generate an audience of approximately 100 people?

Structure and organisation

• Does your proposal structure provide overall synthesis or overview?
• Does your proposal build a well-integrated whole, with each talk having clear relevance to the overall synthesis provided by the Symposium?


• Do your proposed speakers bring new contributions to the session, not simply reviews of previous work?

Relevance to conference theme

• How does the symposium explicitly relate to the conference theme (theme details to be provided soon)

Symposium organisers will be informed of their session’s time and date. Organisers are responsible for notifying all participants in their symposium of the date, time and place of the session. Symposia may be scheduled for any oral session timeslot within the Conference program. The Scientific Sub-committee will attempt to avoid any overt conflicts between sessions and will give organisers an opportunity to notify us of scheduling conflicts. However, it may not be possible to accommodate specific scheduling requests.

Symposium Proposal Submission

All proposals MUST follow the format of the online submission site.

The following information is required to submit your proposal:
• Title of Symposium [5 words]
• Symposium organiser (name, institution or affiliation, contact details). This person will be the principal point of contact for the session.
• Symposium summary. This summary should focus on the theme and structure of the session. It will appear on the website and in the program [200 words]
• Background information, goals, objectives, importance and interest to attendees at ESA 2019.
• Symposium justification. This justification should focus on how the review criteria are met by the proposal.
• Proposed speakers. Indicate which speakers are confirmed, and which are tentative.
• Your main proposal text cannot exceed 500 words.

Key Dates

  • Call for Symposia close: Monday 11 March (note: this is a public holiday for ACT, VIC, TAS and SA)
  • Call for Abstracts open: Monday 15 April (Easter Sunday is the 21st April)
  • Registration open: Monday 10 June
  • Abstract submission close: Friday 19 July
  • Earlybird Registration close: Monday 16 September

ESA19 Postgraduate Day: Sunday 24th November
ESA19 Conference Monday 25th November – Friday 29th November