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Chair Instructions

Forum Guidelines for Chairs and Vice Chairs

All Forum Chairs and Vice Chairs must register for the Congress and will receive the preferential speaker rate.


Forums will focus on a particular area of the oil and gas industry and present significant achievements and important new developments. Each Forum is scheduled for 90 minutes. Chairs will select four high-quality papers and up to ten interactive posters per Forum, ensuring that they cover the whole spectrum of the topic. In exceptional circumstances, five papers can be considered. In this case the Chair must ensure strict time keeping.

In order to uphold the international character of the Congress, the Session Officers (Forum Chairs, Vice Chairs) and the Authors will have been drawn from different countries as far as possible without hampering the technical quality of the presentations.

Forum Management:

Each Forum is managed by the Forum Officers: a Chair assisted by two Vice Chairs. To facilitate communication and coordination with the Congress Programme Committee (CPC), each Forum Chair will be designated an individual committee member, the “CPC Contact”, for guidance and assistance.

Forum Officers are nominated by their country’s National Committee for WPC on the
basis of the following:

  • They are willing to participate and be engaged in the Forum process and can dedicate the necessary time and effort
  • They have a strong knowledge of the Forum topic
  • They are committed to interacting with the CPC and maintaining good contact with Forum paper and poster authors
  • That they can communicate by e-mail
  • They are able to register for the Congress at the reduced speaker rate


The Forum Chair opens the session with a short (max. ten minutes) overview and an introduction of the Vice Chairs and presenters. Each paper author will be given about 15 minutes to present their paper. The Chair decides if they will allow questions after each individual speaker or at the end of the presentations. After the last paper has been presented on the vice chairs will provide a short introduction to the Forum poster and invite the audience to visit the Forum Poster presentations at the interactive poster plaza. The chair closes the session with a short summary.

Forum Officers relationship and organisation:

The whole management of the Forum is under the authority of the Chair. According to WPC’s past experience, it is nevertheless highly recommended that the Chair:

  • Maintains strong communication with the Vice Chairs throughout the Forum process and briefs the Vice Chairs regularly
  • Keeps close communication with the CPC through the CPC Contacts, while retaining ultimate responsibility for the programme
  • Works closely with the Vice Chairs for the selection of authors, the scrutiny of papers and interactive posters, the organisation of the discussion and the compilation of the session summary. In return, the Vice Chairs’ duties are to assist and help the Chair accordingly
  • Defines clear common rules for the evaluation of the abstracts
  • Appoints one of the Vice-Chairs to be in charge of the interactive posters

Tasks & Duties

The selection and evaluation process:

The Forum Chair, with the assistance of the Vice Chairs, is responsible for the selection of papers and interactive posters to be presented to the Congress, subject to final evaluation by the Congress Programme Committee and Executive Committee (EC) approval. Forum Officers will select the best presentations on the basis of 300-word abstracts received through the Speaker Management System (SMS) from:

  • Individuals submitting their abstracts through the Call for Papers issued by the WPC
  • Their own knowledge of the experts in the field, who they are welcome to approach directly and invite to submit abstracts for the Forum via the online Call for Papers system
  • Proposals made by National Committees

All abstracts have to be received via the Speaker Management System (SMS), the official Call for Papers site, to allow evaluation by all officers of the Forum.

Forum Officers will have access to a secure webpage for the Congress containing all abstract proposals, materials submitted and a common area of evaluation. Further advice will be available from the CPC Contact. Forum Officers are encouraged to select authors from a range of countries and diverse backgrounds (gender, expert focus, nationality), but in any case, to select the best candidate for the task, focusing on quality.

Chairs need to make sure, that authors are good presenters of their material and expert contributors to the topic, as well as in a position to produce their manuscript electronically on schedule.

Vice Chairs are permitted to be a Paper presenter. In this case, Vice Chairs will have to submit their abstract through the official submission site during the Call for Papers.

Interactive Posters:

When registering their paper, the authors are requested to specify if the paper is intended as oral or interactive poster presentation (or either). If a proposed abstract has been specified for as a paper submission but cannot be accommodated as an oral presentation and the Chair would like to include it in the Forum, they can contact the author directly to suggest that they re-submit their proposal as a poster. Only the author can make that decision. Chairs should not indicate at any point acceptance of an abstract until the CPC has given its final approval.

Progress follow-up and selection proposals:

Chairs and Vice Chairs can share their evaluations through the official webpage. The forum officers have up to four weeks after the Call for Papers ends to finalise their selection of papers and interactive posters. These will be presented to the CPC for final review. The Chairs will receive a detailed time schedule closer to the date.

Chairs should not indicate approval or rejection to the authors at this point.

Due to the short time period between Call for Papers closure and the deadline for their recommendation to the CPC, it is strongly suggested that Forum Officers start to evaluate the abstracts well before closure of the Call for Papers.

The Abstract Submission website and follow up process:

All abstracts and papers, will be collected and handled through the special 24th WPC  Speaker Management System and process set up by the CPC Secretariat in London in order to:
  • Offer a central registration of all the abstracts and papers received;
  • Provide live online access to the papers and authors for the Forum Officers from around the world
  • Offer a common evaluation area for the Forum Officers;
  • Keep an on-line update of the status of the papers (submitted, under review, selected (as oral or for an interactive poster) or declined);
  • List the selected abstracts in order of presentation at the Congress;
  • Manage the process from the abstract proposal stage to the collection of the final papers and presentations from the authors.

Further details for the practical use of this website will be provided separately.

Notification, Authors’ attendance and Final Paper follow-up:

After the CPC’s acceptance of the Forum Chair recommendations, the CPC Secretariat will notify all the authors of their status by email, indicating accepted and declined status for each abstract submission.

Authors of accepted abstracts are then requested to confirm their participation by registering for the Congress and to provide a full (5,000 words) text of their paper which will be included in the proceedings. The full paper text and the posters have to be submitted through the 24th WPC Speaker Management System website. The Forum Chairs are expected to evaluate the final papers submitted by the authors and check that the papers match the original abstract and that they are of sufficiently high quality.

Chairs must follow up with their authors on the:

  • Confirmation of acceptance by the Authors
  • On-time delivery of the final papers and posters for the proceedings
  • Evaluation of the final paper and power point presentations
  • Forum Chairs are also encouraged to arrange a conference call with the authors to finalise the structure of their papers, avoid potential overlaps with the other presentations in their session and prepare a set of possible questions for the discussion

During the Congress

The CPC will arrange a Chair Briefing for all Chairs and Vice Chairs on the day before the Congress to provide final instructions and an overview of the session logistics and venues.

To facilitate the management of the session, the organisers will schedule a meeting onsite between the forum officers and paper and poster authors half an hour prior to the Forum. This will allow the Chairs to review the timing and confirm the authors’ biographical details. The CPC Contacts will be in charge of facilitating the meeting between officers and authors.

At the Forum:

The Chair, with assistance from the Vice Chairs, is responsible for:

  • opening the Forum, introducing the paper and interactive poster authors; The Forum Chair is expected to give a 10-minutes introduction. They can use this opportunity to provide an overview of the Forum topic, drawing on their expertise and technical knowledge of the subject, and detailing the aspects being addressed in the session.
  • maintaining a lively session
  • keeping to the time set for the oral presentations;
  • promoting the attendance at the corresponding Interactive Poster Session, and inviting the audience to join them during the allocated time of the Forum Poster presentations in the Interactive Poster Plaza
  • summarising the highlights of the session in the closing remarks;

Forum Officers are expected to attend the corresponding Interactive Poster Session for the Forum where each poster author will be given an opportunity to give a ten-minute presentation of their interactive poster. Each Forum will have an allocated time slot in the programme for these presentations at the Interactive Poster Plaza which should also be clearly communicated during the Forum to the delegates. During this time all the poster authors must be present at the Interactive Poster Plaza to engage with the general audience and answer any questions.

About a month before the event, the Forum Officers will receive a final communication with practical information of the duties and onsite arrangements (e.g., attendance at Chair Briefing Session; pre-Forum meetings; presentation text etc.)