Proposals for 2019 Storytelling Session
Thank you for submitting a proposal for Neuroscience 2019. The submission window is now closed. Submitters of locked proposals will receive email notification of their proposal’s acceptance status in late-February.
Patricia Janak, PhD - Chair, 2019 Program Committee
New for Neuroscience 2019, the Program Committee invites the SfN membership to submit proposals for the Storytelling Session to be held at the upcoming annual meeting. Proposal submitters must be active SfN members.
This session should demonstrate the importance of effective scientific communication, share communication methods, and allow scientists to share their connection to neuroscience using a personal narrative. View SFN's current resources on storytelling and science communication via the links below:
- Using Storytelling to Connect Scientists and Nonscientists
- The Power of Effective Storytelling: Communicating the Value of Brain Research
- Science Writing: A Career That Can Fit Any Lifestyle
The Storytelling Session invites presenters to share content through the art of storytelling. Through storytelling, the use of a personal narrative to bring science to life, presenters in this session should seek to impact science communication with the public and within the scientific community. The narrative used by the presenters should engage the audience. Merriam-Webster defines narrative as a way of presenting or understanding a situation or series of events that reflects and promotes a particular point of view or set of values. Proposals for the Storytelling Session should reflect this definition by engaging in narrative communication to forge citizen-scientist relationships, connect with audiences through stories, and highlight non-traditional venues for scientific communication.
An effective Storytelling Session proposal should appeal to a broad section of scientists. Topics should be centered around how scientists can communicate within and outside of the scientific community by telling stories related to their experiences. Past sessions have involved presenters speaking about factors that influenced their career paths, the science behind why people connect through stories, and how scientists can communicate to a lay audience. Submitters should consider involving neuroscience topics that have an impact on society, particularly in terms of ethics or social awareness in their proposal.
It is required that you name in your proposal a chair (perhaps yourself) who has already agreed to be responsible for the Storytelling Session and three to five speakers who have also agreed to participate. The chair must be a member of SfN. Speakers may be SfN members or nonmembers. The chair’s responsibilities include entering submission requirements for the entire session and making sure that all speakers have returned necessary logistical and programming information to SfN. Please note that during the submission and review process, the proposer (if different than the chair) will be the primary contact. After acceptance into the annual meeting program, the chair becomes the primary contact and is responsible for relaying any and all important information to and from the speakers.
Successful proposals will include participants who are experienced storytellers; however, inexperience should not deter interested SfN members from submitting or joining a Storytelling Session proposal. Resources and training will be provided to presenters in the accepted proposal on how to prepare an effective presentation.
The Society for Neuroscience will provide the Storytelling Session chair and speakers with complimentary registration to the annual meeting. Participants will be able to secure their housing for the annual meeting ahead of regular annual meeting attendees. Additional funding support for participants who are non-members is limited and is provided at the discretion of the chair of SfN’s Program Committee.
When to Put It Together
The Program Committee selects the Storytelling Session in February, in time to include the final title in the Preliminary Program. Your proposal, therefore, must be submitted by 5 p.m. EST, Friday, January 11, 2019. This means that it should be well-developed in design, particularly in regard to an agreed upon chair and storytellers, in November or December.
Proposals originate from SfN’s vast membership. Proposal submitters must be active SfN members. Visit www.sfn.org to log in to the 2019 site and create a new Storytelling Session proposal. Your proposal should be firm before submitting, meaning that the agreement of the chair and speakers has already been obtained. The site will direct you to provide the following (all character limits include spaces):
- Contact information (institutions, emails, addresses) for the chair and speakers
- Title of the overall Storytelling Session and the individual presentations
- Publicly-accessible links to past storytelling presentations given by proposed presenters, if applicable
- Short description of the Storytelling Session for use in the annual meeting Program and Neuroscience Meeting Planner (500 characters)
- Overall objectives for how your proposed Storytelling Session uses narrative communication to connect with the audience (1500 characters)
- Why the proposal is timely (500 characters)
- The extent to which you session could have a broad appeal for the membership (500 characters)
- The diversity of your presenters (gender, international, underrepresented minorities) (500 characters)
- Other considerations that may make the proposal attractive (500 characters)
The final selection is made by the Program Committee, whose primary consideration is to determine what will best serve the interests of the Society for Neuroscience and the success of the annual meeting. The committee may suggest substitutions of speakers or a different chair. The committee may decide to combine two proposals into one and suggest which speakers should be retained in that event. Suggestions arising from discussions of the Program Committee are passed on directly to the proposed chair.
Note that proposals that fail to be accommodated one year will not be held over for consideration the next. However, a proposal can be re-submitted the following year and will receive the same consideration as any other submission.
For more information, contact SfN staff at (202) 962-4000 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Appropriate representation of gender diversity, international scientists, and underrepresented minorities is strongly encouraged and will be considered in the selection of the Storytelling Session by the Program Committee. The Program Committee retains the right to work with the organizer to modify the composition of the Storytelling Session to ensure diversity.