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Meetings Board

David C. Hooper

Chair, Meetings Board



Strategic Review of Meetings


The strategic plan for the Meetings Department was initiated in 2013.  Since its development, the Planning Committees have spent time identifying specific strategies: 


  • The Conferences Committee is exploring the addition of a forum that would address emerging topics early in their lifecycle but that may not have the audience sufficient to warrant contracting with a hotel.  They hope to introduce this opportunity for 2015.
  • The Biodefense Committee is reviewing the operations of planning the meeting, as well as exploring options to make the program more inclusive by adding career development opportunities.
  • Working with the Communications Department, the General Meeting will introduce a public event in cooperation with the Boston Science Museum.  In addition, General Meeting added new educational sessions called “Learning Labs” that are designed to increase audience participation in small groups for limited time periods, as well as increased networking opportunities that will provide attendees more opportunity to connect with the plenary session speakers each day of the meeting.
  • ICAAC is also expanding the opportunity for attendees to connect with speakers by expanding time at the end of select sessions to incorporate audience exchange.  In addition, more protected time has been added each afternoon for posters and exhibits.  Finally, the Meetings Board has put together a Task Force to review the status of ICAAC and determine what changes should be incorporated for the future.  The Task Force will meet on April 22-23 and will be facilitated by the consultants who assisted with the strategic plan.


Collaborative Initiatives


ICAAC has finalized an agreement with the International Society of Chemotherapy (ISC) to hold a joint meeting in 2015.  As mentioned in the 2013 Annual Report, the rationale for the joint meeting is as follows: 


  • ICAAC 2015 is scheduled to be held in San Diego, California. Several months after ASM had committed to San Diego, the Infectious Disease Society of America (IDSA) also signed for San Diego.  These two meetings are approximately 3 weeks apart and potentially attract similar, but not identical, audiences.  It is anticipated that a joint meeting with ISC may provide an added incentive for participants to attend ICAAC.
  • ICAAC leadership has been exploring opportunities to expand their marketing reach to Asian/Pacific countries and has recently had success in planning targeted special sessions for the Chinese audience at the 2012 and 2013 meetings.  Member organizations within ISC include the Asian/Pacific countries, so it is anticipated that a joint meeting with ISC will serve to enhance the ICAAC brand in these countries.


ICAAC is also exploring for 2015 an opportunity for a joint pre-meeting symposium on Emerging Infectious Diseases with the International Society for Infectious Diseases (ISID).  This opportunity has not yet been confirmed.


The 2014 Clinical Virology Symposium (CVS) will be the last year of transition for this meeting.  Starting in 2015, CVS will become part of the ASM meetings portfolio. 


The 2014 International Conference on Emerging Infectious Diseases (ICEID) was cancelled but the CDC has contacted ASM meeting to schedule a planning meeting for a 2015 meeting.  The exact date of the planning meeting has not been finalized but will take place in late-spring or early-summer.


Working in cooperation with the Society for Worldwide Medical Exchange (SWME), ASM is a cosponsor of a six-week online course on hospital acquired infections that will address the Latin American scientific community (primarily South America and Mexico).  The program, presented in Portuguese and Spanish, will launch with a live event on July 25, 2014 in Montevideo, Uruguay and will be followed by weekly online modules.  This CME event is based on a needs assessment derived from the Latin American scientific community and is being organized by local scientific leaders.


New Technologies


ICAAC Online for 2013 had very successful sales earning over $100,000 in registration fees.  It was agreed that ICAAC Online will continue for 2014.  Based on post-event surveys, no sessions will be live streamed in 2014.  Participants indicated it was difficult to schedule their work day (or free time) around a live event for that significant amount of time.  Continuing medical education credit will continue to be made available for all the sessions.  In an effort to expand the impact of this product, ICAAC is exploring the possibility of hosting webinars with some of the most highly viewed sessions and incorporate a live update on the topic.  The General Meeting Program Committee agreed to introduce a similar virtual program for asm2014. 


Comparative Statistics for General Meeting, ICAAC and Biodefense




General Meeting


















Scientific Attendance







Total Attendance


















Abstracts Submitted







Abstracts Accepted














Number of Booths







Number of Companies














*As of 10 weeks prior to the meeting




A summary of conferences held between July 1, 2013 and June 30, 2014:

4th ASM Conference on Salmonella was held October 5 – 9, in Boston, Massachusetts.  There were 254 abstracts received; 220 were scheduled as posters, and 28 were selected for short oral presentations.  The budgeted attendance for this conference was 300 and the final attendance was 310.


3rd ASM-ESCMID Conference on Methicillin-resistant Staphylococci in Animals was held November 4 – 7, 2013, in Copenhagen, Denmark.  There were 126 abstracts received; 102 were scheduled as posters, and 18 were selected for short oral presentations. The budgeted attendance for this conference was 150 and the final attendance was 183.  

4th ASM Conference on Enterococci was held March 5 – 7, in Cartagena, Colombia. There were 84 abstracts received; 72 were scheduled as posters, and 8 were selected for short oral presentations. The budgeted attendance for this conference was 150 and the final attendance was 156.


12th ASM Conference on Candida and Candidiasis will be held March 26 – 30, in New Orleans, Louisiana.  There were 302 abstracts received; 234 were scheduled as posters, 18 were scheduled as 5-minute “elevator” oral presentations (also presenting a poster); an additional 81 talks are scheduled, selected from the submitted abstracts and from session conveners and presenters delegated by conveners.  There are a total of 99 oral presentations scheduled for this conference.  The budgeted attendance is 325, and the current preregistration total one week prior to the conference is 350.


1st ASM Conference on Experimental Microbial Evolution will be held June 19 – 22, in Washington, DC.  Additional data are not available at this time.