Viewpoints | Conversation #1: Academic conferences

09 July 2020 | Video production Simon Communications. Photo Supplied.


On 29 June 2020, the University of Cape Town (UCT) hosted a challenging conversation about academic conferences that questioned “How virtual can we go?” This event was the first in a series entitled Unleashing the new global university.

Should we consider virtual to be the future of conferences? What are the gains and losses of online conferences, workshops and consortium meetings? How can conferences be reinvented?

Prior to the event, we asked people from a range of backgrounds to share their thoughts on the subject. The video includes viewpoints from

  • Professor Susanne Buiter
    Programme committee chair for European Geosciences Union conference (EGU2020)
  • Rifaat Emeran
    Service delivery manager, Tertiary Education and Research Network of South Africa (TENET)
  • Professor Diane Grayson
    Senior director, academic affairs, University of the Witwatersrand
  • David Opoku
    Data engineer, Accra, Ghana
  • Serah Njambi Rono
    Director of community, organiser


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