Centering inclusivity in the design of online conferences-An OHBM-Open Science perspective

Elizabeth Levitis, Cassandra D Gould van Praag, Rémi Gau, Stephan Heunis, Elizabeth DuPre, Gregory Kiar, Katherine L Bottenhorn, Tristan Glatard, Aki Nikolaidis, Kirstie Jane Whitaker, Matteo Mancini, Guiomar Niso, Soroosh Afyouni, Eva Alonso-Ortiz, Stefan Appelhoff, Aurina Arnatkeviciute, Selim Melvin Atay, Tibor Auer, Giulia Baracchini, Johanna M M BayerMichael J S Beauvais, Janine D Bijsterbosch, Isil P Bilgin, Saskia Bollmann, Steffen Bollmann, Rotem Botvinik-Nezer, Molly G Bright, Vince D Calhoun, Xiao Chen, Sidhant Chopra, Hu Chuan-Peng, Thomas G Close, Savannah L Cookson, R Cameron Craddock, Alejandro De La Vega, Benjamin De Leener, Damion V Demeter, Paola Di Maio, Erin W Dickie, Simon B Eickhoff, Oscar Esteban, Karolina Finc, Matteo Frigo, Saampras Ganesan, Melanie Ganz, Kelly G Garner, Eduardo A Garza-Villarreal, Gabriel Gonzalez-Escamilla, Rohit Goswami, John D Griffiths, Tijl Grootswagers, Samuel Guay, Olivia Guest, Daniel A Handwerker, Peer Herholz, Katja Heuer, Dorien C Huijser, Vittorio Iacovella, Michael J E Joseph, Agah Karakuzu, David B Keator, Xenia Kobeleva, Manoj Kumar, Angela R Laird, Linda J Larson-Prior, Alexandra Lautarescu, Alberto Lazari, Jon Haitz Legarreta, Xue-Ying Li, Jinglei Lv, Sina Mansour L, David Meunier, Dustin Moraczewski, Tulika Nandi, Samuel A Nastase, Matthias Nau, Stephanie Noble, Martin Norgaard, Johnes Obungoloch, Robert Oostenveld, Edwina R Orchard, Ana Luísa Pinho, Russell A Poldrack, Anqi Qiu, Pradeep Reddy Raamana, Ariel Rokem, Saige Rutherford, Malvika Sharan, Thomas B Shaw, Warda T Syeda, Meghan M Testerman, Roberto Toro, Sofie L Valk, Sofie Van Den Bossche, Gaël Varoquaux, František Váša, Michele Veldsman, Jakub Vohryzek, Adina S Wagner, Reubs J Walsh, Tonya White, Fu-Te Wong, Xihe Xie, Chao-Gan Yan, Yu-Fang Yang, Yohan Yee, Gaston E Zanitti, Ana E Van Gulick, Eugene Duff, Camille Maumet

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


As the global health crisis unfolded, many academic conferences moved online in 2020. This move has been hailed as a positive step towards inclusivity in its attenuation of economic, physical, and legal barriers and effectively enabled many individuals from groups that have traditionally been underrepresented to join and participate. A number of studies have outlined how moving online made it possible to gather a more global community and has increased opportunities for individuals with various constraints, e.g., caregiving responsibilities. Yet, the mere existence of online conferences is no guarantee that everyone can attend and participate meaningfully. In fact, many elements of an online conference are still significant barriers to truly diverse participation: the tools used can be inaccessible for some individuals; the scheduling choices can favour some geographical locations; the set-up of the conference can provide more visibility to well-established researchers and reduce opportunities for early-career researchers. While acknowledging the benefits of an online setting, especially for individuals who have traditionally been underrepresented or excluded, we recognize that fostering social justice requires inclusivity to actively be centered in every aspect of online conference design. Here, we draw from the literature and from our own experiences to identify practices that purposefully encourage a diverse community to attend, participate in, and lead online conferences. Reflecting on how to design more inclusive online events is especially important as multiple scientific organizations have announced that they will continue offering an online version of their event when in-person conferences can resume.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbergiab051
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 20 Aug 2021


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