Virtual Mobility Grant

Grantee Name: David Smith
Grant Title: 3rd ENTAN Conference: Concept development and Organisation
Home Institution: University of Glasgow
Grant period: 01/08/2021 - 18/09/2021


David Smith:

The virtual collaboration involved regular interactions over Zoom and email between the nominated Conference Chair (David Smith), the local organisers, the Action Chair and other selected Committee members, all of whom were able to feed in additional insights and suggestions that went towards elaboration of the final conference concept and Call for Papers. The activity once again demonstrated the value of online platforms in enabling all parties to come together for fruitful discussions irrespective of geographical location. It also provided further insights as to how this technology can be used in further conference planning (e.g. discussion of abstracts and allocation of peer reviewers) down the line, as well for widening participation in the 3rd conference by attracting an expanded online audience of academics and policymakers across the COST area. In this respect, the Action Chair was able to usefully share and reflect upon the experience of organizing the second conference according to this format. While the collaboration helped to build personal relationships between the Committee members, some in-person contact would undoubtedly have been helpful. Similarly, a short preparatory site visit to Constanta by the Conference and Action Chair would have been desirable, since it is hard to get a full sense of some practical logistical issues without being present on the ground. Hopefully it will become possible to arrange such a visit in 2022 ahead of the conference. Overall, however, the virtual networking format functioned well in this case.