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Conferences

SIPS 2022 Program Now Live

The program for the SIPS 2022 conference is live*! 

We hope you’ll join us, either in-person or online, for a dynamic agenda of workshops, hackathons, and unconference sessions. There’s still time to register at the regular rate! Click here to start. Modality swaps are allowed through May 28, and virtual registration ends June 19.

This year SIPS is going hybrid! That means that most of the conference attendees will participate remotely via Zoom, but some will join from the conference center in Victoria, BC, Canada. The landing pages for each session will confirm the ability of remote participants to join onsite sessions.

Want to present a lightning talk or pre-data poster, or organize a roundtable session? Submit your proposal on or before June 13, 2022.

We look forward to seeing you at #SIPS2022.

Best,

Jennifer Gutsell, Julia Strand, and Balazs Aczel

SIPS 2022 Program Committee

*Please note that the schedule may still change slightly due to corrections.

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Conferences General

Call for Proposals: SIPS 2024 Conference Hosting


Call for Proposals to Host the 2024 SIPS Conference

The Society for the Improvement of Psychological Science (SIPS) is excited to issue a call for proposals to host its annual conference in 2024. We are particularly interested in receiving proposals for conference locations outside Canada, Western Europe, and the United States. 

Background

To date, SIPS has planned its annual conferences exclusively in Canada, Western Europe, and the United States (see table below). As noted in the Global Engagement Task Force Report commissioned by SIPS, “When major conferences are held in only one or two geographic regions, less financially secure scholars are systematically excluded, which limits the exposure of their perspectives to an international community” (Steltenpohl et al., 2021, p. 8). The authors of the task force therefore recommended that “SIPS hold the annual conference in geographically diverse regions, including those traditionally labeled as ‘Global South,’ ‘Low and Middle Income Countries.’” Doing so will enable contributions by all international stakeholders, which will in turn allow us to generate the best ideas for how to improve psychological science. 

YearLocation# Registered
2016Charlottesville, VA, USA~100
2017Charlottesville, VA, USA~200
2018Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA271
2019Rotterdam, the Netherlands521
2020Remote/online1197
2021Remote/online1012
2022Victoria, BC, CanadaTBD
2023Padova, ItalyTBD
SIPS Conference Sites

The Proposal

Brief proposals for hosting the 2024 SIPS Conference should focus mostly on logistics such as where the conference events would take place (hotel/institution and in what city and country) and roughly how much it would cost, whether the site has sufficient space to accommodate typical conference sessions, accessibility of the nearest airport, and accessibility of affordable lodging and meals. (To get a sense of typical conference sessions, please refer to programs from past conferences, available here.)

SIPS conferences are financed by SIPS in large part through registration fees, sponsorships, and donations; therefore, proposals for hosting the conference do not need to consider how the conference will be funded. That said, hosts are welcome to note sources of funding they could contribute or obtain to defray the costs of the conference. Similarly, the scientific program for SIPS conferences is coordinated by a program committee that works together with the logistics committee to plan the conference. The program committee evaluates submissions and creates the schedule of events. Therefore, proposals for hosting and handling the logistics of the conference do not need to address the scientific program. 

Evaluation

The table below lists the criteria that proposals should address and how they will be evaluated. 

CriteriaInformation about this criterion is scarce or not applicable.This criterion is partially met.This criteria iscompletely met.
Host Characteristics
The conference is hosted by an individual or group committed to SIPS and improving psychological science in general.
The host(s) have previous experience with this kind of event or have demonstrated skills that are relevant to doing so.
Conference Site
The conference site facilities are adequate for ~500 participants and typical conference session activities (universities or similar are preferred due to cost effectiveness).
The site has spaces that facilitate networking and informal exchange among participants.
The site is close to eateries, lodging, and transportation venues.
Approximate cost to reserve the site
Advantages & Limitations
The proposal addresses potential advantages of the conference location (e.g. accessibility, funding sources that can be applied for, local SIPS or similar communities in the area) 
The proposal addresses potential limitations of the conference location (e.g., laws or local ordinances that target marginalized members of the SIPS community, potential travel/visa restrictions)
Financial, Travel, and Timing Considerations
The proposed costs are acceptable.
The proposal specifies the nearest airport and its distance to the conference site
The date proposed for the event is appropriate; it should occur in June or before.
Are the organizers interested in hosting the SIPS conference in a subsequent year if the proposal is not selected for 2024? (the answer to this question has no bearing on 2024 selection)YesNo
Criteria for Evaluating SIPS 2024 Conference Hosting Proposals

Submission

Upload a single pdf of the proposal to the survey linked here by 1 May 2022. Complete proposals will be reviewed by the SIPS Executive Committee based on the criteria noted above. There is no formal word/page minimum or maximum but proposals are meant to be brief.

Please direct any questions to sips@improvingpsych.org. We are excited to discuss your ideas for a proposal prior to submission; feel free to request a conversation before investing effort in your proposal. Similarly, the EC reserves the right to request a conference call with potential hosts to address questions about their proposal before making a decision.

Categories
Conferences General

Diversity Re-Hack at SIPS 2021

Kimberly Quinn

Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Access (IDEA) Committee

Following the SIPS 2021 virtual conference, session leaders were invited to respond to a survey to reflect on their diversity and inclusiveness practices.

They were prompted to consider diversity in a number of ways:

  1. Identity-based forms of diversity (e.g., gender expression, sexuality, race and ethnicity, neurodiversity)
  2. Geographic diversity (researcher location, culture)
  3. Career-stage diversity (academic: undergraduate students, (post)graduate students, postdoctoral researchers, tenure-track faculty, tenured faculty; non-academic: probationary/temporary versus permanent)
  4. Institutional diversity (high schools, two-year / community colleges, undergraduate institutions, Masters-granting institutions, PhD-granting institutions, nonacademic organizations)
  5. Resource diversity (institutional support and infrastructure, money, time)

Of the 55 session leaders contacted, 28 (51%) responded to the survey. Eight of the 55 sessions were explicitly diversity-focused (and four leaders of diversity-focused sessions responded to the survey), whereas the remaining 47 sessions were not (and 24 of these session leaders responded to the survey).

Session leaders replied to five questions. Key themes in their responses are summarized below (along with my own reflections and/or recommendations, where applicable).

Note that I sometimes distinguish between inclusion and access. I refer to inclusion as people’s real or perceived sense of being recognized and respected in their identities, and access as people’s opportunities to obtain and make use of knowledge or resources.

What did you do to foster diversity and inclusion in this session?

Session leaders reported working toward both access and inclusion. 

Inclusion-directed activities included the following:

  • Highlighting session leader diversity
  • Acknowledging session leader positionality (including epistemic positionality, e.g., positivist versus constructivist views on knowing)
  • Creating welcoming spaces (e.g., encouraging personal introductions, welcoming and teaching attendees how to share their pronouns on the virtual platforms)
  • Creating accessible and inclusive spaces (e.g., using small breakout rooms to give more  attendees the opportunity to participate, allowing the use of text-based chat in addition to or instead of speaking, enabling asynchronous contributions via shared documents)
  • Being attentive to disability and neurodivergence (e.g., using live captioning, recording sessions when the content or contributions were not private, using colorblind-friendly colors in materials, making materials available offline, providing preparation materials in advance)
  • Being attentive to identity-related issues in the presentation of session materials (e.g., acknowledging that gender-dichotomized data in a demonstration data set did not reflect expansive definitions of gender)

Access-directed activities included the following:

  • Being attentive to resource diversity (e.g., relying exclusively on open-source software)
  • Being attentive to knowledge diversity (e.g., conducting pre-session surveys to gauge knowledge, sharing background papers in advance, overviewing introductory concepts at start of session)
  • Advertising in advance (e.g., via Twitter) to attract broader attendance

One comment stood out for highlighting a potential topic for future discussion. A session leader noted that they had devoted a lot of attention to career-stage diversity and power structures while also neglecting identity-based diversity and power structures. In my mind, this comment serves as an implicit call for intersectionality as a topic of discussion. All of our various identities—based on race, gender, sexuality, (dis)ability status, but also on less conventionally considered variables such as career stage, institutional type, and so on—have the potential to combine in ways that create different forms of privilege versus exclusion. We have an opportunity, and perhaps even an obligation, to consider how identities that impact inclusion and identities that impact access might interact in ways that are particularly detrimental to the scientific community by virtue of who they exclude from scientific activity and discourse.

Who will benefit from the knowledge disseminated / materials developed in the session?

Sessions leaders generally responded that beneficiaries would be sessions attendees and anyone interested in the knowledge and/or skills targeted in the session. They referred primarily to researchers, instructors, and students as those who would benefit. One notable exception was a reflection that had a “hidden curriculum” flavor to it, noting that early-career researchers, scholars in the Global South, and scholars at smaller and/or teaching-focused institutions might be particularly likely to benefit.

Reflecting on the similarity of responses to this question highlighted for me that the question was likely unclear. It might be interesting for session leaders to consider who would likely be interested in the session content and/or outputs. Would the ideas, methods, etc. appeal to all researchers, instructors, and/or students in the relevant domain? In so doing, session leaders might also consider defining who they include in each of these stakeholder categories and identifying groups or individuals who would likely not be interested in the session content and/or outputs. Should efforts be made to reach, appeal to, and serve these groups or individuals? If so, how?

Who might be left out, overlooked, or otherwise less able to benefit?

Session leaders again tended to focus on whether conference attendees were able to attend their sessions, reflecting on geographic diversity and session timing, attendee language barriers, and so on. There were some reflections on whether cultural norms and values might constrain the relevance of session content or prevent full engagement and open discussion. Another response reflected on the largely online nature of SIPS (with its virtual conference and the generally high engagement of SIPS-oriented scholars on Twitter). 

There were also a few reflections on the time, resource, or financial burden of adopting advocated practices. This kind of reflection might be useful for future consideration. Focusing less on sessions themselves and more on the products and practices that result from these sessions, session leaders might benefit from asking who has the ability and desire to use them. Perhaps more importantly, who doesn’t use the products and practices, and why? Should efforts be made to adapt products and practices to these people? If so, how?

What can you (as session organizer) and/or SIPS do to expand who can benefit? What can you (as session organizer) and/or SIPS do to address barriers?

Note. These questions were asked separately, simply to provide respondents with different ways to frame the issue. Responses to the two questions (unsurprisingly) mirrored each other, so the summaries have been combined here.

My summary for these questions is brief, because most of the responses recapitulate what we’ve heard before when asking about how to improve access and inclusion: a need to consolidate all of the outputs from SIPS efforts over the years to prevent redundancy and make identification of and access to information easier; a need to translate materials into multiple languages to address language diversity; a call for consistent automatic captioning of videos to address both language barriers and disability; and a desire to maintain the virtual conference format (or at least adopt a hybrid format) to address geographic and financial diversity. 

Responses also echoed past discussions calling for efforts to integrate epistemic diversity (i.e., diversity in approaches to “knowing,” such as positivism versus constructivism) into replicable science discussions and practices and for SIPS to publicly address and acknowledge the  colonial and imperial histories in psychology and their ongoing impact.

Finally, one respondent acknowledged not knowing how to better foster inclusiveness in a session focused on a specific methodological issue, and this resonates with me as someone who teaches quantitative research design (acknowledging its particular positivist standpoint). When I first considered whether my own pedagogy supported diversity and inclusion, I thought my mandate was to think about how I presented issues of race, gender, and the like, and to ensure that the research I highlighted included female, Black, Indigenous, People of Color, or LGBTQI+ authors, and I know from conversations with others that I was not alone in this understanding. I struggled with this in the context of research methods teaching because so many of the classic readings and even much contemporary work comes from White men. It took me a while to realize that fostering diversity and inclusion was also about my audience (i.e., my students). The issues aren’t just about the materials we present (i.e., whether we promote work from minoritized scholars) and the activities we ask people to engage in (e.g., whether we talk about race), but also how we do that. How do we engage everyone in our audience—students in our classes or participants in our SIPS sessions—and ensure that they feel valued and included?

This respondent recommended that SIPS provide training or tips to foster inclusion. My hope is that future session leaders can look to the examples described above as a starting point, and that SIPS takes up this recommendation.

A closing reflection

As noted above, session leaders were encouraged to consider diversity in terms of identity, geography, career stage, institution type, and resource availability. My sense is that the community’s discussions in recent years have done much to promote the first three types of diversity, but much less the last two. To be clear, we still have much to do on every dimension. However, until we seriously consider the constraints imposed by limited time, support, and infrastructure and how these constraints shape research practice, we will have limited success in our mission to improve psychological science.

Categories
Conferences

SIPS 2021 Program Now Live

The program for the SIPS 2021 conference is live! 

We hope you’ll join us for a dynamic agenda of workshops, hackathons, and unconference sessions. There’s still time to register at the early rate! Click here to start. (Early registration will be available through May 15, 2021.)

Want to present a lightning talk or pre-data poster, or organize a roundtable session? Submit your proposal on or before June 9, 2021.

SIPS 2021 Conference website: https://improvingpsych.org/SIPS2021

Categories
Conferences

SIPS 2020 Moves Online

Over the past two weeks we have been monitoring the development of the COVID-19 pandemic and, for the safety of the SIPS community as well as the various other communities to which we all belong, we will no longer be holding the SIPS meeting in-person, in Victoria, BC, in 2020. It is with regret that we communicate this news, as we have seen tremendous value come from the social and interactive nature of past meetings. Nevertheless, we plan to still convene as a community in a remote version of the conference, on the original dates (June 21-23).


We apologize for the inconvenience this may have caused for those who have made travel plans that cannot be changed or refunded. In an effort to mitigate some of those costs, registration for the remote conference will be free of charge. If you have previously registered for the conference, you will be refunded unless you indicate that you would prefer to donate your registration fee to SIPS. Please complete this brief form if you would like to donate your registration fee.

 
We are just beginning the process of determining what this remote conference will look like. Likely it will involve some combination of content communicated via video (e.g., pre-recorded workshops) and other content that involves interactive video-conferencing (e.g., live hackathons). We will let you know more as this planning takes form, and are excited to see how this new meeting takes shape in the hands of both the SIPS leadership and the SIPS community. 

The pre-SIPS repliCATS workshop has also been canceled. Questions about repliCATS should go to repliCATS-project@unimelb.edu.au. Please direct any remaining questions to sips@improvingpsych.org.