SIOP 2020 Virtual Conference & Registration Options FAQ
Update April 3, 2020
When will the virtual conference take place?
We plan to have all participating sessions available for access during a two week time period in June, however, we may roll out some content earlier.
When will submitters learn more about virtual conference participation?
We expect to email all accepted submitters of SIOP 2020 sessions in mid-April with information regarding virtual presentations and the process for opting-in to participate.
Is there a list of all sessions that will be included in the virtual conference?
Not yet! We have spent the past few weeks planning out the format and parameters of the virtual conference. Now that those are coming together, we need to connect with each of the 950+ submitters to gauge their interest and capacity.
Please note that only the Thursday, Friday, and Saturday peer-reviewed and SIOP Select sessions will be asked to opt-in to the virtual conference. We are reviewing options for how we could bring other conference events (Preconference Workshops, Friday Seminars, etc.) to fruition, but those types of sessions are not a part of the virtual conference plans.
Will there be a social interaction component of the virtual conference?
Yes! We plan to give registered virtual conference attendees and invested sponsors access to Whova, our conference mobile app, to participate in discussions, share information, receive updates, and enjoy all the benefits of this platform that will be exclusively available to paid virtual conference participants.
Is the registration requirement still in place for presenters who choose to participate in the virtual conference?
We request that presenters who opt-in to having their session materials included in the virtual conference please register. A paid virtual conference registration is the only opportunity to access the 2020 event in Whova, which will serve as the platform to support the SIOP conference community. Without access to Whova, you will miss out on the conversation around your session and access to all other content from your fellow submitters and presenters.
Will the virtual conference offer continuing education credit?
No, there will be no CE offered for the peer-reviewed content associated with the virtual conference.
What are my refund options?
If you are a current registrant of SIOP 2020, the choices for your general registration fee are:
- Please transfer my full general registration fee to the virtual conference so that I may enjoy access to the valuable SIOP 2020 educational content and conference app.
- Please refund my registration payment except for an $85 administrative fee, which I am pleased to let SIOP use to offset irretrievable conference expenses and lost revenue.
- Please issue me a full refund for my general conference registration fee.
- All registration fees for optional events (e.g., Preconference Workshops, Frank Landy 5K Fun Run, etc.) will be refunded in full. An exception is Placement Center, which is still being determined given that the service remains operational.
- Individuals who registered at the “Regular” registration rate (after the early registration deadline passed) who select option #1 will have their registration rate refunded down to the “Early” registration rate for their category (professional member, Student Affiliate, or nonmember), unless otherwise requested.
- Sponsors, exhibitors, and advertisers will receive separate communication from SIOP regarding opportunities for reinvestment or refunds.
What do I need to do to inform SIOP of my choice?
All current registrants of SIOP 2020 are asked to visit our 2020 Annual Conference Options form by Tuesday, April 14, to indicate their choice. This process should take fewer than 3 minutes. Even if you sent an email to SIOP at some point in the past few weeks requesting a refund, we still ask you to please visit this link to officially submit your request.
Once SIOP has processed your selection (within 15 business days), you will be able to find verification of whichever type of transaction you selected (registration transfer, partial refund, or full refund) by logging in at SIOP.org, scrolling down to “Recent Orders”, and selecting the document icon next to the transaction for a PDF receipt.
If I ask for a refund, by when will I receive it?
We ask for your patience in awaiting your refund, as there are nearly 4,000 registrants and the SIOP staff is not accustomed to managing refunds in such a large volume. We will endeavor to provide refunds within 15 business days upon request via the online form located here.
What are my options if I had previously cancelled my conference registration?
If you were assessed the $85 administrative fee and are willing to leave that in place to help SIOP offset expenses and lost revenue, that would be appreciated. But if you would like to receive a full refund, please submit your request by email to Jamie Keblesh, Finance Manager, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If I had not yet registered for the Austin conference but would like to attend the virtual event, will I be able to do so?
Yes! We know that many of our members are eager for the educational content they can only find at a SIOP Annual Conference. The virtual conference registration fees will be the same as the early conference registration rate ($185 for Student Affiliates, $295 for professional members, $525 for nonmembers). Stay tuned for virtual conference registration to open to new registrants in the coming weeks!
Will there be virtual versions of the Wednesday Preconference Workshops, Consortia, and Advanced Professional Development Course or the Friday Seminars?
Although it is possible these events may be developed into virtual offerings, we are unable to commit at this time to what those experiences may be like and how much the registration fee may be for them. Therefore, we will automatically refund all registration fees associated with these events upon receipt of a registrant’s choice for their general registration fee, to be submitted via the online form located here.
Coronavirus (COVID-19) and the 2020 SIOP Annual Conference in Austin, Texas
Update March 23, 2020
As the coronavirus pandemic evolves, our thoughts remain with those who are infected and the health care workers and other essential staff who are on the front lines of this crisis. Our concern extends to our members and partners, for their physical and mental health and well-being, as well as their professional development and success in the industrial-organizational psychology field.
We would like to provide some visibility to the work being done by the SIOP 2020 Program Emergency Task Force, which is coalescing around the best options for a path forward. Although specific details are not yet available, we want to share the principles that are guiding us as we quickly but thoughtfully make decisions around a virtual conference offering.
SIOP 2020 Program Emergency Task Force Guiding Principles
The good work submitted, curated, and peer-reviewed by our valued members
The vital role of community-building that the Annual Conference fulfills for SIOP
The diversity of member needs and preferences, especially in a time of crisis
Fairness and transparency in decision-making
Openness to innovation and experimentation
Awareness of precedent-setting for SIOP’s future
The integrity of SIOP 2021 program development
The capacity of our volunteers and staff
The conference revenue on which SIOP so critically relies
The work to be done is massive in scale and importance to our profession, but we are confident that our community can step up to the challenge. If you have virtual programming-related suggestions for us, please email email@example.com. We are committed to creating an experience that aligns with the principles described above, and input from the SIOP member community and conference supporters will help us to achieve this goal.
As a reminder, if you are part of an accepted session, please refrain from taking any action on creating a virtual component or other method of delivery until SIOP has had the opportunity to finalize and share our plans.
We will continue to share updates as we have them. Thank you again for your patience and energy toward SIOP 2020!
Scott Tonidandel Elizabeth McCune Alexis Fink
Conference Chair Program Chair Conferences and Programs Officer
P.S. – Conference registrants who indicated a request for the printed program to be mailed to them may be receiving their copy soon. The shipment had already been in transit by the time that SIOP 2020 was officially cancelled. For those who receive it, enjoy your instant collector’s item! For everyone else, you can find the program in its entirety online at here.
Update March 18, 2020
Dear SIOP Friends,
Since announcing the cancellation of SIOP 2020 in Austin due to coronavirus (COVID-19), we have been astounded by support and offers of help from members and partners in the SIOP community. To continue our broader dialogue, we wanted to share some of the most common topics:
I have ideas about how to distribute conference content virtually. Who can I contact?
We so appreciate that our members are eager to help! And, indeed, technology has made digital delivery of information more accessible than ever before. We ask for your patience in allowing us to weigh the options that serve SIOP and its members best, considering the size of our conference program (954 sessions) and available funds to support technology solutions. If you are part of an accepted session, please refrain from taking any action on creating a virtual component or other method of delivery until SIOP has had the opportunity to finalize and share our plans. If you have suggestions for the SIOP 2020 Program Emergency Task Force, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
I was excited to attend the conference, but now that it is cancelled, when can I expect a refund?
We anticipate offering more than one refund option based on the potential for virtual delivery of some educational content. As a result, we are holding off on processing refund requests until we can answer this registrant question more precisely, which we intend to do by April 3, 2020.
What will happen to my Austin hotel reservation?
Information can be found on the hotel page for registrants who had booked into a SIOP room block at one of our 16 contracted hotels. Our hotel partners have been extremely accommodating in this challenging time, so please share in our appreciation of them through your courteous communications and patience as they process countless cancellations and postponements from all their guests, SIOP-related or not.
I think SIOP makes most of its operating budget from the conference. Will SIOP be able to survive?
The conference is indeed a primary source of revenue for SIOP, alongside membership dues. The loss of this event is difficult, but SIOP will survive. We are adjusting our expenditures and reviewing our investment portfolio to weather this storm. Many of you have generously offered to provide financial assistance. We are truly inspired by and grateful for these gestures. We again ask for your patience in taking action so that we can generate options from which our registrants and other supporters can choose.
Why didn’t SIOP make the decision to cancel the conference sooner?
This is the definition of an evolving matter; events are continuing to unfold even as we write this text. When we bring our members together, our top priority is providing for their health and safety. SIOP leaders and staff monitored the coronavirus developments very closely and remained cognizant that mass gatherings were fast becoming a public health concern. Receiving the March 14 declaration by the Mayor of the City of Austin expressly prohibiting large gatherings positioned SIOP to act, both for the short term as we do our civic and scientific duty to “flatten the curve”, and for the long term as we preserve the organization’s financial solvency. Although the wait for a cancellation announcement may have seemed long to some, the outcome has been the ability to both honor public health concerns and demonstrate good stewardship of SIOP member investment.
Why didn’t SIOP postpone the conference until later this year?
The ongoing uncertainties about COVID-19, including its implications for business, education, and travel, made it impossible, or at least unwise, to try to predict and plan for an alternative date this year.
Our thoughts continue to be with those directly and indirectly impacted by the virus. We are confident that SIOP will remain a strong, vibrant community for the field of industrial-organizational psychology, but it will take time as the leadership and staff collaborate on how to move forward. Thank you again for your patience.
Eden King Scott Tonidandel
SIOP President SIOP Conference Chair
Update March 15, 2020
To our colleagues and partners in the SIOP community,
Thank you for your patience and understanding as the SIOP Executive Board and Conference Committee leadership has monitored the coronavirus (COVID-19) global health pandemic. As you know, the situation is incredibly fluid, and the information emerging each and every day voluminous. While we wanted to provide quick answers, we also wanted to be sure to make choices that preserve the health and integrity of the SIOP community.
The City of Austin ruled on Monday, March 9, 2020 to prohibit gatherings with more than 2,500 attendees. However, the city’s guidance also included an exception clause which did not make this a straightforward decision. SIOP partnered with JW Marriott and Austin Public Health to obtain an official ruling on whether the ban would apply to SIOP 2020, which was a necessary action before proceeding forward.
Although we did not receive a response from Austin Public Health within the timeframe expected, we learned last night that the Mayor of the City of Austin has prohibited gatherings of 250 or more people through at least May 1. Therefore, our conference, scheduled for April 23-25, 2020, at the JW Marriott in Austin, Texas, is officially prohibited from taking place.
We are announcing that the SIOP Executive Board has voted to accept the cancellation of the 2020 SIOP Annual Conference in Austin, Texas.
President Eden King and the Executive Board have established a SIOP 2020 Program Emergency Task Force to evaluate options for presentation and distribution of SIOP 2020 educational content through virtual or digital means. We ask for your patience as we determine the feasibility and potential value of such an offering.
We are also actively reviewing how to manage the tremendous financial implications of this outcome. Cancelling a conference of our size involves unwinding dozens of contracts and commitments, as well as absorbing sizable irretrievable expenses already invested in what would have been our regular, in-person SIOP 2020.
We understand that SIOP registrants, exhibitors, and sponsors will have questions about refund options from SIOP and our hotel partners. We ask for your patience and understanding as we navigate this unprecedented and unfortunate terrain. We plan to have more information available by April 3, 2020. Thank you for understanding.
Our appreciation is extended to all in the SIOP community who submitted work to the program, served as peer-reviewers, eagerly registered to attend, invested in sponsorships and exhibits, were to be celebrated at the Opening Plenary, and who dedicated thousands of hours of time and energy into planning what would have been an incredible 35th Annual SIOP Conference.
While the loss of SIOP 2020 is difficult, our thoughts are with all of those who are infected with the COVID-19 virus, the healthcare workers who are trying to stop the spread, and the millions of individuals and businesses who are impacted by the disruption to our global economy and way of life.
SIOP will find a way forward. SIOP members have defined resilience as perseverance towards goals despite adversity. We are confident that SIOP is resilient; together, we will persevere toward our shared goal of maintaining a healthy, vibrant, engaged, and impactful community.
Eden King Scott Tonidandel
SIOP President SIOP Conference Chair
Update March 11, 2020
Six weeks out from our annual conference in a typical year we would be sharing our excitement about upcoming opportunities for learning, networking, and innovation. This year, we have to recognize that the global public health concern posed by COVID-19, and the corresponding measures that some corporations, universities, and governments are taking to reduce or eliminate travel, is likely to impact our annual conference.
We understand that you may have questions about SIOP 2020. Let us begin by assuring you that we—elected members of the Executive Board together with the Conference Committee and the Administrative Office—are working to find the best possible solution to ensure the integrity of public health, science-practice translation, and the financial future of SIOP.
Many of you will have seen that the City of Austin has prohibited gatherings with more than 2,500 attendees. On the surface, it may seem automatic by this standard that SIOP would be cancelled under such circumstances (our current registration is 3,900+ and counting).
However, the city’s guidance also specifies that exceptions can be made. We are partnering with JW Marriott and Austin Public Health to obtain an official ruling on whether the ban would apply to SIOP 2020. We anticipate a response from the city within a few days.
The decision by Austin Public Health will help to guide our path forward. We will issue another update as soon as we are able. In the interim, we hope you will find comfort as we do in the knowledge that we are connected to each other in shared hopes for a full and speedy global recovery.
Eden King Scott Tonidandel
SIOP President SIOP Conference Chair
Updated March 4, 2020
The SIOP Executive Board, Conference Committee, and Administrative Office staff are closely monitoring the developing coronavirus (COVID-19) situation. We are thoughtfully considering various scenarios that may unfold between now and the conference date.
SIOP is committed to the health and safety of our members, partners, and event attendees, as well as to making decisions based on available evidence and recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), World Health Organization (WHO), and other health authorities.
We will post updates to this site as new information becomes available, including a list of onsite measures SIOP is planning for a healthier conference, and how attendees can help.
Please check back regularly for updated information about SIOP 2020.
For more information about COVID-19, please visit:
World Health Organization (WHO)
Daily situation reports - https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019/situation-reports/
Coronavirus (COVID-19) FAQs - https://www.who.int/news-room/q-a-detail/q-a-coronaviruses
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
Travel information - https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/index.html
Coronavirus (COVID-19) FAQs - https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/faq.html
National Institutes of Health
General information - https://www.nih.gov/health-information/coronavirus
U.S. Department of State
International travel advisories - https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/traveladvisories/traveladvisories.html/
City of Austin, Texas
Coronavirus (COVID-19) response - http://austintexas.gov/department/news/286