Chair and committee information

A guide to successful chair and committee participation
Chairs and committee members attending SPIE Optics + Optoelectronics

Thank you for your leadership

The responsibilities of being conference chair, programme committee member, or session chair are crucial to the success of SPIE events, and it is you, our incredible volunteers, who are the true engine of the Society. On behalf of the Board of Directors and the entire staff of SPIE, thank you for volunteering your time and dedication—we truly could not do this without you.

Below you'll find specific information for each of these roles. Of course, some of this won't be pertinent to an online forum, but you'll find a lot of useful details.

If you have any questions or concerns at any point along the way, please don't hesitate to contact your Conference Program Coordinator.

Conference timelines and deadlines


Call for papers due from chairs 22 June 2020
Abstracts due from authors 10 November 2020
Advance programme due from conference chairs to conference programs coordinator 11 December 2020
Student grant applications due from student authors to conference program coordinator 23 February 2021
Changes for final programme due from conference chairs to Alex P. Rusova, Conference Programs Coordinator 8 March 2021
Manuscripts due for all conferences, authors submit via spie.org 24 March 2021
Conference held online  19 - 23 April 2021
Conference chairs to complete manuscript reviews and submit Introduction to proceedings for all conferences 29 April 2021

Important resources for conference chairs


Program committee member responsibilities


  • Give technical input to the conference chairs as needed
  • Assist conference chairs in publicizing the conference and soliciting abstracts
  • Suggest speakers to be invited
  • Participate in the presentation abstract and manuscript review process (as assigned by the conference chairs)
  • Introduce/organize specific conference sessions
  • Serve as session chair as requested by conference chairs

Program committee members who are essentially inactive will be rotated off after two or three successive occasions exhibiting negligible involvement, in the interests of efficiency and to make space for new committee members.

Session chair responsibilities


For information on how to prepare for and chair a session see the guidelines on chairing a session

  • Session chairs help to ensure that the conference runs smoothly
  • Session chairs will introduce the session topic, speakers, maintain the schedule, and be prepared for the unexpected
  • If a speaker fails to appear, the session chair will fill the open time with a standby paper, discussion topics, question and answer session, or an open discussion.
  • After the session, session chairs will submit the session report via the SPIE mobile app (or emailing SessionReports@spie.org), or by returning the printed Session Report Form to the Chair Services Desk or Speaker Check-In Desk.
  • Represent SPIE in a professional and ethical manner; be familiar with SPIE code of conduct and anti-harassment policy
  • Report unethical or inappropriate behavior: http://www.spie.ethicspoint.com

If you have any questions or need more information, please contact your Conference Program Coordinator.