ICA 2020 - Frequently Asked Questions
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Updated Friday, 1 May 2020

As you know by now, the Executive Committee of the International Communication Association—in the face of numerous health concerns, bans on mass gatherings, and university bans on faculty travel—made the difficult decision to cancel the physical ICA conference in May in the Gold Coast, and move the conference to a virtual format.

Please reference this page for any questions regarding the most recent changes to the 70th Annual ICA Conference.


Read the most recent announcement regarding #ica20.

READ ALL CONFERENCE ANNOUNCEMENT UPDATES

Virtual Conference Update 24 March 2020

Updated FAQ for Virtual #ica20 10 March 2020

COVID-19 and Our Decision on the 70th Annual ICA Conference in Australia 6 March 2020

ICA 2020 Conference and Coronavirus Provisions 16 February 2020



Conference Registration & Refunds

What happens to my conference registration fee if I've already registered for #ica20?

Every registration received thus far will be automatically converted to a virtual registration, allowing access to the online platform where you can upload your presentations and access all pre-recorded and live aspects of the conference when it goes live, including an exhibit hall, posters, and other events such as business meetings and pre- & postconferences.

Every current registration on and prior to 9 March* will receive a refund of 25% of the price you paid per your member style and tier, automatically, plus a refund of the GST (tax) you paid. These will be processed over the next 6-8 weeks (we cannot do them all in one day due to the constraints of our payment system). We will start processing these on 1 April. Before then, please answer the survey (see your email) letting us know if you want your 25% refund or, as some have suggested, you would like to donate that 25% to the Hardship Fund to help early career scholars with the cost of nonreimbursable flights.

*If you are in a group that already receives a heavily discounted rate such as a group rate negotiated by your university, you will not be refunded the additional 25%.

*If you have a conference waiver for the physical conference, that will still entitle you to free access to the virtual conference.


When will I receive my 25% refund?

We have begun processing refunds. But this will take weeks to complete. If you do not receive any notifications regarding your refunds by June, then feel free to contact the Membership Department. But until then, please be patient and allow us time to process the refunds.


What if I wasn't going to attend when #ica20 was in Australia, but now I want to register?

If you have not yet registered and want to, now that there is a virtual option, the discount is 25% off the original price (reference updated prices here). Please select the correct tier and member type here and process your registration on the updated page here: https://www.icahdq.org/event/ICA20.


Why is the conference registration discount 25%?

ICA will pay stiff penalties to the venues in Australia for cancellation, in addition to the costs of utilizing the virtual platform; this discount reflects the missing services you would have received (such as morning and afternoon food breaks) while recognizing the value we retain by allowing you to present your work virtually, retain the listing in your CV, and interact with the work of your colleagues.


Why do I have to register to participate? I don't like the idea of a virtual conference; I'm in it for the face to face interaction.

Many (senior) scholars, especially, will feel this way; we understand. If you are tenured, you might not attend the conference to present yourself, or even for the papers; you might just go for the networking and to see old friends. That’s great! But early career scholars need you to go even if it’s virtual. They (and ICA) need your support, they need an “audience”, your comments and presence for their work as much as ever.


Since this is not a physical conference, can I get a refund on both my conference registration and membership dues?

We will not be refunding membership fees. While the member discounted rate is a benefit of membership, we are still having the conference, merely in a different format, and membership has other benefits. 

If you have submitted a request for a refund for any circumstance other than the above, we have your message and are holding it in abeyance until we get the more pressing matters dealt with (such as building the platform for the virtual conference, which we now only have two months to do). Please note that we have only four staff who handle everything to do with the conference. We are very, very busy as a result of this change.


What if my university won't pay for me to attend a virtual conference?

We have had this question raised a few times and each case, it turned out to be a presumption not based on policy. Your university may not pay for you to attend a webinar that was online from the start, but ICA is recognized as a legitimate conference that happens to be going online due to unforeseen extenuating circumstances, and universities have been supportive of this. If your university does have this policy and maintains that they will not pay even after you have explained, send us a signed letter from your provost or dean on university letterhead confirming the policy and stating that “this policy is being applied to the 70th Annual ICA Conference, which was to be held in Gold Coast Australia but will now be an entirely virtual event for one week in May due to the COVID-19 outbreak.”


Why can't ICA refund everything and just do the virtual thing for free?

ICA is incorporated under US law as a nonprofit 501(c)3 membership association. This designation means that money you pay for attending a conference or to have an ICA membership does not go to line the pockets of a CEO or of shareholders. Any revenue ICA makes beyond breaking even on expenses—any surplus—goes directly back into accomplishing our mission. As a gross over-simplification, our income budget consists of three main pillars: membership fees, conference registrations, and publishing royalties. If we refunded one third of our entire budget on top of paying the penalties we have paid in order to protect the health and safety of our attendees and their loved ones, we would not have enough income to pay our expenses. We are still doing a conference, and there are additional technology fees incurred from making that choice. Please be understanding with ALL conference organizers during this time, who have similar budget structures. If we refund all conference registrations, membership fees, and reimburse you for your flight, we would cease to exist and would not be there for your future needs (journals to publish in, conferences to present at, awards to win, receptions where you might meet your next collaborator or mentor).


Will ICA refund my flight costs?

Unfortunately, we cannot; please see the above question regarding financial reality to this question.

Some airlines are being lenient about COVID-19 related cancellations and rebooking; experiences vary by airline. If your university has banned your travel, that letter is likely an even better proof for your case in getting your money back than our letter will be. In many cases, universities banning travel have agreed to absorb the costs of cancellation. In other cases, airlines may allow you to simply change your flights to another destinations with a later date. If your airline will not let you cancel or change, you may want to just hold onto the reservation in hopes that the airline cancels on you at a later date (in which case you might receive a refund).

Although ICA cannot refund any flights, we have started a hardship fund. Claes de Vreese (U of Amsterdam), ICA President-Elect and #ica20 Planner), has initiated an ICA20 Hardship Fund, collecting donations from universities, individuals, and ICA divisions & interest groups for a fund to which student and early-career scholars will be able to apply for reimbursement of nonrefundable flight and visa expenses. As we won't know until May whether individuals will receive refunds from canceled flights--this information evolves daily as restrictions are put in place--the application to receive reimbursement will not be open until the virtual conference starts in late May. If you are interested in donating as an individual to the hardship fund, please click here to do so. If you are interested in donating as an institution in response to Claes’ call, please contact me and I can get you the information you need. ICA is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization and all donations to the fund are tax-deductible in the US to the extent allowable by law.



Lodging & Ground Reservations

What will happen to my lodging reservation? How do I cancel or get a refund?

If you have booked a room at the Star or Sofitel, good news: Experient hadn’t given your actual payment information to the hotel yet (that wasn’t to happen until mid-April). You will not be charged. We will simply purge the reservations at these two properties that were blocked by ICA. The penalties on those missing reservations will be covered by substantial attrition fees ICA will pay to the hotel.


What if I did not book my reservation at the Star or Sofitel?

If you booked at one of the apartment properties, you will need to contact them directly, as your contract is with them directly (as we mentioned in several places); we are not an intermediary for your reservation. We have negotiated with the Qube/Synergy, the two apartment properties, to be more lenient than they are required to be. For those of you who booked refundable/changeable bookings, you will receive a refund minus the $200 deposit. If you booked the early bird/non-refundable rate, while they are under no obligation to give you anything back, they have agreed to give a 50% refund as a good faith gesture in recognition of the truly extraordinary circumstances. We are delighted to have been able to get this refund in place. You must contact them directly to process your cancellation.

If you booked anywhere else for your lodging, obviously those details will be up to you and the lodging venue to determine according to the details you agreed to when booking. ICA cannot assist with those negotiations.


I still want to go to the Star or Sofitel. Can I keep my reservation?

If you are at the Star or Sofitel and want to still have a holiday and retain your reservation, we regret that this is not possible as ICA’s contracted, discounted rate is negated by the cancellation of the overall event. You will need to make a new reservation.


What about my ground transportation reservation?

If you booked ground transport via Con-X-ion to get from the airport to Gold Coast and back again, you will need to inform them of your cancellation in order to have them process your refund.



Pre/postconferences

I am a pre/postconference organizer. What do I do now?

You have several choices for how to proceed; please let conference@icahdq.org know your decision:

  1. You may continue to hold your offsite pre/postconference as a physical event if you think you will retain many local attendees.
  2. You may move your once-onsite pre/postconference to an offsite location and continue to hold it as a physical event.
  3. You may decide to use the ICA conference virtual platform or a separate provider to hold your pre/postconference (in which case we would advise a 25% discount on registrations, but as that is your budget that you have to break even with, we cannot enforce that.)
  4. You may decide to cancel outright (in which case we would refund 100% of pre/post conference registration paid).
  5. MORE COMPLICATED: If you have a physical event you are still going to hold, but some attendees are no longer coming because the MAIN conference is going virtual, so they won’t be in town, it is up to you how you handle those refunds.

I registered for a pre/postconference. How will I know if the one I registered for will still happen?

If a pre/postconference has been cancelled, ICA or the organizer will reach out via email with the announcement.

Another place to find information on pre/postconferences is here.



Virtual Conference General Questions

Do I need a separate login to access the virtual conference?

Everyone accessing the virtual conference will need to have registered first in order to gain access to view your own presentation or view others. You will have to upload to a different site outside of the actual virtual conference: www.vfairs.com/uploads/.

Note that those who do not register will not be cleared to use the virtual platform (the company that provides the platform will cross-check registrations with our list). If you don’t register, you can’t access the platform to upload your work (or see the work of others).


Am I going to have to watch sessions at 03:00 (in the morning) my time?

No! The conference will be asynchronous, as we have members/attendees in 87 countries and there is no time zone that accommodates everyone for a live session. The platform will be open 24 hours a day from 20 May to 26 May and you can log in, view content, and make comments at any time during that time. Do note that because our platform provider is in Canada, customer service/tech support will be available only during about half of that time (daytime at their office). At any point during that week, you may log in and engage with as much or as little content as you desire.


Do I have to present virtually?

You are expected to participate virtually as a presenter if you had committed to presenting your paper at ICA20 physically; this is a commitment each of you made when you submitted your work. With the exception of those who may have vision or other accommodations the virtual conference is, if anything, easier than traveling abroad, so the expectation is that everyone will uphold their commitment to present. In this way, the virtual conference will be a robust experience and you can preserve the ability to list your presentation on your CV as being presented at the 70th Annual ICA conference.

This is the statement everyone reviews when submitting: “Conference attendance: If your panel, paper, or interactive display presentation is accepted for an ICA conference, you have made a commitment to register for and attend the conference and perform your assigned role. All chairs and respondents also make this commitment.”

If you do not upload your presentation, it will not be considered to have been presented at the 70th Annual ICA conference for the purposes of your CV. We will have a record of who participates and who does not, and we do receive reference check calls when universities are considering hiring and tenure. Make sure your CV is accurate.


How will the conference support those who need accommodations for hearing and other issues?

For all types of sessions, we ask that you turn on the automatic captioning provided by Zoom (if that is the platform you are using to record your video) because we have several attendees with hearing impairments. Please also, if you can, make one of the first chat comments on your own video your contact information so that audience members can contact you for more information/to collaborate (if you're open to such contacts). If you have an "access copy" we highly encourage you to put a link to that document in the chat. The chat function unfortunately will not allow document uploads. See these guidelines for accessibility from a sister association.


How do I reflect this on my CV?

Your work has still been accepted, and will be presented, at the 70th Annual ICA Conference. The only notation of the changed situation that you may want to add is a parenthetical “(Virtual)” or a more robust “Converted from Australia to virtual due to COVID-19” next to that line.


Will presenting virtually count as publication and keep me from submitting to journals?

No. You will still have the option of uploading your actual full paper (optional) to the ScholarOne site before the conference happens, to be accessible for up to 60 days after the conference before being taken down. This upload has never counted as publication, and having a video of you presenting your work up for only one week online, behind a firewall, will not count as publication either.


Will we have a virtual option from now on?

That remains to be seen, depending on the feedback and attendance we get after this forced “experiment.” For many months we’ve been hearing from attendees that climate change should lead us to have more virtual options, but once we made the decision to take ICA20 completely virtual in light of COVID-19, we received numerous messages lamenting the loss of face to face contact. There is no perfect answer. We recognize that climate change is its own form of emergency. This will be a good opportunity for us all to examine how the virtual atmosphere does and does not replicate the f2f conference.


I can't handle this right now! I don't think I can upload or participate in the conference.

"We absolutely get it. There’s nothing you need to do right now. I have two sons and the very active 6-year-old one is driving me bonkers right now while I’m trying to get all this conference planning done, while I’m receiving daily emails from school about all the things I should be doing for homeschooling! I am immune compromised, so I haven’t left my home in a month except for dog walks, and our government just extended a shelter in place through 10 June. It’s a lot to handle. But I also know that my ability to handle things changes by the day: there are good days when you feel like you’ve got it under control, and days when this all feels hopeless. I am absolutely there with you. I am worried for the health of those I love, too. But for many of us, we may be less anxious and more used to the routine of living in isolation by May, so we ask that you not make this decision now. Again, as we mentioned in the prior message, if you get to the first week of May and just cannot fathom making space in your life for uploading your video, you can let us know then." - Laura Sawyer, ICA Executive Director


Why should I bother with this with everything else going on in the world?

There are several compelling reasons we are still doing this conference despite the need for completely reimagining it as a virtual event:

  1. Students and early-career scholars need you. Especially those who are building their CVs for an imminent or already-under-way job search. They NEED US to have this conference. They need ICA to stay the course and provide them with a place to present their work not only so it can be listed on their CV but so that they can have access to FEEDBACK FROM YOU. They need your input to make their work stronger. Help us help them.
  2. Your colleagues need you. This is ICA’s 70th Annual Conference, as we are celebrating the 50th anniversary of our identity as the International Communication Association. In the past several weeks we have seen how readily our members band together to provide help to each other, whether it’s expressed through universities and individuals funding the Hardship Fund; scholars tweeting each other with #protips on how to move your classes online; or our members rallying behind ICA as we became one of the first groups to cancel our physical conference for the sake of our attendees’ health and safety.
  3. ICA needs you, too. ICA is a non-profit organization, and over a third of our annual budget comes from the Annual Conference (grossly oversimplified, the other two thirds come from membership dues and royalties from our journals). ICA will lose a lot of money on penalties for cancellation and sunk costs for the in-person meeting we had to cancel, and those losses will be much exacerbated by any refunds we process, including the 25% refund we are giving to each attendee. Despite these expenses and this lost revenue, the Executive Board decided that the health and safety of our attendees was the top consideration. But ICA still needs the support of its members, attendees, exhibitors, and sponsors. All non-profit membership associations to which you belong need you to support them with your participation, where applicable, in order to not only survive (so they will all still be here when the dust settles, to publish the journals and hold the conferences where you can present your research and interact with old friends), but also to preserve our sense of community. From ECREA to NAB/BEA, from IAMCR and AoIR to SFSIC and DGPuk, membership associations have been here to help you grow your career, make new connections, and disseminate your research, and we want to continue to be here after we have collectively weathered this storm together.

Will there be a print program?

Yes, in a way. We will still generate a "print" program that has all the ads and the cover and the information for every paper, which will be available as a PDF online for you to print yourself if you want (we had already decided to cancel the printing of the large program before the pandemic happened), or you can just save the pdf and do a control + F to search for phrases and names. You will also be able to search for specific presentations either in the virtual platform or, if you want full papers that have been uploaded in many cases, you can search for them in ScholarOne’s paper submission system.


Will the presentations be schedule-specific?

No, the conference will be 95% asynchronous, and we won't have a schedule-at-a-glance grid this year, because without the construct of 27 rooms for the X axis and time slots for the Y axis, the whole “schedule” construct falls apart. The program will be organized according to the 33 divisions and interest groups. More on this later.


When will the conference go "live"?

The conference will be live for 24 hours a day beginning 20 May through 26 May. This is the IRL calendar footprint of the live conference if one were to include pre and post conferences, so we are keeping those dates. You can access at any time during that week, no matter what time zone you are in. You will upload your video prior to that, however.


How do I log in?

For everyone who has registered directly with ICA, we will upload that list and contact information to the platform and they will each receive an invitation email.


Can I visit the conference without paying?

Unfortunately, no. We have to use the same registration system as always, and that list will be given to the platform administrators. Only those who are paid registrants will have password-protected access to the platform. You may not visit the exhibit hall, upload a video, view videos, upload or view posters, or anything else within the app without a registration log-in.


What about “zoom-bombing?”

While our platform is Zoom-based, it is its own system, and because it is password protected no one can “bomb” the sessions. In addition, most sessions are recorded, further eliminating this risk.


Will there be an exhibit hall?

Yes! The exhibit hall is actually an impressive and interactive function of the platform we are using! All our exhibitors are choosing, so far, to participate in the virtual hall in order to provide a robust experience for attendees. They can upload videos and documents to their virtual booths, and you can visit each one and ask questions.



Virtual Conference Presentations

How do individual paper sessions work?

Each presenter can do their own 7-minute (or however long you’ve been allotted) video and upload it, OR the Division/IG Planner or Session Chair can contact everyone in that session to call in for a Zoom (or other service of your choice) call and record that as one video. The chair should talk to the group (all presenters in the session) via email, to get consensus. If you’re doing ONE group video, we encourage you to record it and have the chair moderate just like any other session, and then you can ask each other questions to start off the Q&A. However, the “audience” portion of the Q&A will be conducted over the course of the week the conference is open, via a chat box to the right of the video screen. You will receive an email from your Div/IG Planner or Session Chair.


How do I record my presentation?

Please make sure that you talk to your Division/Interest Group Planner or Session Chair prior to recording, to make sure you are supposed to do your own video. You can pre-record your video using any platform as long as it is supported by Vimeo (the virtual conference site is supported by Vimeo).

  • Acceptable file formats:
    Vimeo supports just about any kind of video file, including these common formats: MP4, MOV, WMV, AVI, and FLV. All videos uploaded to Vimeo will be converted to square pixels. Regardless of format, all videos will be displayed at the correct aspect ratio.
  • Vimeo does not accept audio files, image files, or other non-video formats, such as: MP3, WAV, WMA, JPG, and PNG. Project files such as imovieproject and dvdproj files are also unsupported, since these are not video files.

If you do not have a supported platform, you can use Screencast-o-Matic to record your video. Please see the quick guide detailing how to download and use Screencast-o-Matic. All video uploads are due by 13 May @ 12:00 Noon ICA Office Time.

How do I submit my pre-recorded presentation?

If you participate in a session video call that the chair records, only the session chair needs to upload anything. If your session chair decides that you will do individual videos, you will upload individual videos. Please be sure to confirm which method you are using before proceeding. All video uploads are due by 13 May @ 12:00 Noon ICA Office Time.

  • Once your videos are ready, please upload them here: www.vfairs.com/upload.
  • Please carefully read these specific instructions on how to fill out the upload form. If you do not enter the correct details, your video may be placed incorrectly. For the specific fields, please fill in:
    • Virtual Event Name or URL: ICA20 - your Division/Interest Group
    • Your Company Name: your session title - your individual submission title
    • Your Name: your full name, affiliation
    • Your Email Address: your email address
  • Example:
How do I know if my video upload was successful?

Once you submit you will see this confirmation on the next screen.




Unfortunately, you will not receive any confirmation emails.

I don’t have a professional-looking background, a quiet office space, or the energy to look presentable right now. How can I record this video?

Everyone is probably in the same position right now.

Try to:

  • ensure you can be heard clearly through your microphone
  • don’t put a window directly behind you (to avoid being nothing but a silhouette)

But DON'T worry about:

  • background distractions like your partner walking through the room
  • needing to hold your child
  • what you're wearing or whether your desk/kitchen counter/floor/life looks cluttered. We will meet you where you are.

What if our session decides unanimously to do separate paper videos? Do the Chair, Moderator, or Discussants need to upload videos too?

If each presenter is doing their own video then there would be no need for involvement of the Session Chair, except possibly to moderate comments on the Q&A chat if desired. No video would needed to be uploaded by the Chairs, Moderators, or Discussants. But there are chat boxes for each video and they can comment on each presentation there. See question above.


How do we handle plenaries and other panel discussions?

We encourage each panel to work together (the chair of the panel should take the lead) to get everyone on a Zoom (or other service) call, and record the videoconference, asking each other questions for the Q&A as above, with the audience Q&A conducted by a weeklong chat alongside the video. If this is not possible for your panel, please contact c.h.devreese@uva.nl, lsawyer@icahdq.org, conference@icahdq.org, and your div/IG planner to discuss.


How will virtual escalator sessions work?
  1. UPLOAD: each presenter (mentee) uploads a 3-5 minute video about their work to the corresponding session in the program, prior to the conference week
  2. VIEW: during conference week, mentors and observers view those videos (and mentees can see each other's videos)
  3. TEAM MEET: during conference week, each 2-person team (mentor and mentee) will come up with their own plan for when and how to "meet" which will happen outside the platform, taking into account technical capabilities and time zones of both scholars
  4. GROUP SESSION: The chair of the session will, prior to conference week starts, arrange a time at which everyone (hopefully) can meet together via Zoom (within the platform, as a live event), in order to do the reflections part of the exercise.
How long are sessions?

Each session should still take only 75 minutes. So, if you’re doing a panel, 75 minutes. If you’re doing separate papers (whether together or as separate videos), you still divide up this time as you normally would. There are two ways to do this:

  1. Preferred method: If you are doing a group call to conduct the session, and you have 4 presenters, just as in an in-person session this would be a brief intro from the chair, 15 minutes per paper, and then 10 to 15 minutes of Q&A (which you will ask to each other, to get things rolling before the conversation continues on the chat). The chair will upload the video to the platform.
  2. Also okay: If your group decides to do separate videos, your chair will tell you how long your video should be, and you will each record and upload them individually. The chair will have no real function vis a vis the videos unless the chair wishes to record a brief intro to upload.

When do I need to upload my full paper?

You will be able to upload your full paper (or revised work) from 1 April to 30 April within ScholarOne (the same procedure we had last year). We cannot extend this deadline because to do so would mean we cannot open the system in time for people to read the papers. The system can either be open for uploads or open for read-only, not both at the same time.

If you are NOT able to upload your paper during this time frame, please know that you a. don’t have to do this at all (may people never do, even in a “normal” year, and b. You can always put a link to a final version in the first comment of your Q&A next to your video.


Are posters going to be videos as well?

Yes, poster presenters should record a 5-minute video. We recommend doing a screen recording of your poster/pdf while presenting it in the background, that way you are able to explain and give a pitch for your research. Another way to present could be having a physical poster and presenting that during a recording. Any option would work, creativity is an added bonus! All video uploads are due by 13 May.

  • Once your videos are ready, please upload them here: www.vfairs.com/upload.
  • Please carefully read these specific instructions on how to fill out the upload form. If you do not enter the correct details, your video may be placed incorrectly. For the specific fields, please fill in:
    • Virtual Event Name or URL: ICA20 - your Division/Interest Group
    • Your Company Name: your session title - your individual submission title
    • Your Name: your full name, affiliation
    • Your Email Address: your email address
  • Example:

Can I share my video presentation outside of the virtual conference?

Yes, it's fine to share your own video presentation we just ask that you wait until after the conference (like the 26th) to share publicly. Videos will not be able to be downloaded from the virtual conference site, so don't forget to save your own video if you want to share it.



Virtual Conference Events

What will happen to social events like receptions and events?

Off-site events
IF YOUR DIVISION OR INTEREST GROUP WAS PLANNING AN OFFSITE EVENT, don’t forget to cancel your venue rental. If ICA headquarters paid your venue deposit from your div/IG budget, you are responsible for securing a refund. Once the refund is back in ICA’s account, it will be credited back to your division/IG. The headquarters office is not the main contact for your contract and a venue would not cancel without that person’s permission. Therefore, you must do this yourself. If you forget and are charged the full amount, this will negatively affect your division budget.

On-site events
If you were planning a division or interest group reception in the Star or GCCEC and had not signed your own contract (ie you were operating as part of ICA), the significant penalties we will pay on the venues’ missing food & beverage revenue will cover your event and you don’t need to do anything.
If you were planning a reception at Star or GCCEC that was an external satellite event and I had connected you directly with the hotel or convention center staff to arrange for your event, and/or you had signed your own contract, you will need to refer to that contract as to your obligations.
If you had an event at Sofitel or any other property, you likely have a contract you have signed to which you should refer for cancellation penalties and details. ICA cannot be an intermediary for those contracts.


Will there still be a Board of Directors Meeting?

Yes, but of course it will have a different format than usual. You will hear from Julie Arnold on that as soon as we have a complete plan in place. It will likely include a two-week long chat on uploaded agenda items, followed by a survey to conduct the votes. This method is supported by the bylaws. Your deadlines for reports and action items for the board meeting REMAIN THE SAME.


How do we conduct our business meeting?

You have several choices.

  • First, it is completely fine not to have a business meeting if you don't have the bandwidth (literally or figuratively) to do one.
  • If you DO have one, your second choice is to have it LIVE. The platform can handle this BUT we do caution about this because of the aforementioned time zone issue with members in 87 countries.
  • Therefore, we recommend you choose the third option, which is that you handle it like a panel presentation: have your officers do a video conference that you record, to give out the information and show the types of slides you normally use for your business meeting (membership, budget, etc). You will upload this to the platform. Your audience can then ask you questions using the chat during the week the conference is open.
  • IMPORTANT: As with the live conference, it is not permitted to take binding votes via your business meetings, as (whether in-person or virtual) those who aren't there are disenfranchised of their vote. You can ask for a "sense of the room" or "feedback" on something (via the chat) but anything that requires real voting approval, such as a dues increase or a bylaws change for your group, MUST be conducted via the October election.

Will there be a presidential address?

Yes! Terry Flew will record it from Brisbane, as close as he can get to our original location as possible!


Will there be an awards ceremony?

No, sadly, but we will send an email (and publish in the newsletter) all the award winners and the newly inducted Fellows. They will wait until #ICA21 in Denver to come on stage and receive their plaques, along with the 2021 winners and Fellows.


How will you handle awards?

ICA-wide award winners for 2020 will be published in the ICA newsletter, but will wait until #ICA21 in Denver to receive their plaques and be recognized on stage. Some awards might not be given at all this year, depending on whether they had reached a decision prior to the pandemic hitting its stride and disrupting everything.


Will new Fellows be inducted?

Fellows will be listed in the newsletter but will wait until #ICA21 in Denver to come onstage and receive their plaques. Despite not being “inducted” onstage, they will be considered inducted and will be added to the online Fellows listing in June, following the conference.


Will there be opening and closing plenaries?

Yes, Claes de Vreese is making plans for those as we speak!


What about the Michael Haley Memorial?

Any online version of this would not be adequate to the occasion, so we will postpone the memorial until the #ICA21 conference in Denver. At that time, Barbie Zelizer and Cynthia Stohl will put together a fitting tribute where friends can come together to share their memories of Michael from his 16 years at ICA. Michael’s family had planned a small gathering for March 2020 that also had to be canceled due to the pandemic, so we have invited Michael’s husband Edward and their daughter to attend the Denver memorial.


Will we have a Planners’ meeting for Denver #ICA21 at the virtual conference?

The ICA Conference team will send out the planners' guide in the summer after the #ica21 conference.


Can we do committee meetings?

Yes! Obviously, these can't be pre-recorded, as they are collaborative, so:

  • You can schedule one and do it via the Zoom-integrated platform (at a mutually agreeable time for the people who are on the committee, behind the firewall if all are registered), or
  • You may handle it outside the platform via another system. If you already have a committee meeting on the schedule (submitted to headquarters), please let us know what you choose.
  • You also can choose not to have a meeting at all and just defer it to another time, or to have one before or after the conference week using any other platform.
  • If you want to have a committee meeting that is not yet in the program, it’s not too late. You can email conference@icahdq.org to ask for a slot.