Call for Participation for the SSP 42nd Annual Meeting

SSP’s 42nd Annual Meeting will be held May 27–29, 2020, in Boston, Massachusetts. We invite you to submit your proposals for concurrent sessions now through November 15

Proposals for sponsored sessions are being accepted now through January 10

Please note, this year we will also be accepting proposals for a new content type: posters! Poster presentations will provide an opportunity for information to be displayed and available to all attendees. Poster authors will also be able to discuss their poster’s content with attendees in one-on-one or small group conversations. The call for proposals for posters will open next month, so please be on the lookout for additional information about that.

This year’s pre-meeting seminars are being developed separately from the proposal process, so we will not be accepting submissions for those. But please stay tuned for more information about those offerings! 

We are delighted to announce the theme of the 2020 SSP Annual Meeting:

Rethink, Reimagine, & Revolutionize the Future of Scholarly Communication

Our world is changing rapidly, and scholarly communication is no exception. The rich history of SSP’s 2020 host city of Boston inspired the concept of “revolution” in this year’s theme, and we hope to explore a broad range of interpretations of this concept as they apply to our community. How will we as scholarly communication professionals reimagine ourselves to respond to the changes happening across the industry? Subjects such as equity and inclusion, ethics, artificial intelligence, and open access mandates provide both opportunities and challenges for the community as a whole. How do we ensure the inclusion of different perspectives and experiences as we forge a future path? In the past decades, great shifts in revenue models, technology, and market changes have forced revolutions in our industry. Next spring in Boston, we will challenge ourselves to drive the change that we think is necessary to ensure that scholarly communication continues to thrive.

The proposed tracks for the meeting are described below. We look forward to receiving content that speaks to the meeting topic and tracks, but we also welcome creative, non-thematic submissions. Whatever the specific subject, all submissions should describe how the proposed session will engage SSP’s audience with vital information, get attendees thinking in new ways, and involve a diverse set of speakers across subject areas. 

We encourage anyone who is involved in publishing or scholarly communication in any capacity to submit a proposal. The SSP Annual Meeting has a very wide scope, including all aspects of book and journal publishing from organizations of all types, perspectives from libraries and academia, fields across social sciences and humanities and STM, explorations of scales from small to massive, and a focus on the broader effects of sharing knowledge with the world. We can only offer tracks and sessions based on your submissions, so if you have a particular area of interest you want to see covered, please consider submitting a proposal!

Proposed tracks:

  • Tools & Technology: The world of scholarly communication will always rely heavily on technology. Session proposals focused on the latest developments in the tools and infrastructure underlying the sharing of scholarship are encouraged. 
  • Culture of Change: Our community is changing in ways big and small, thinking in new ways about diversity, accessibility, and inclusion, to name just a few. Session proposals exploring these shifts and outcomes are welcomed. 
  • External Pressures: The business of scholarly communication has been facing major transformations, and more are anticipated. Session proposals designed to collaboratively evaluate possible solutions are especially encouraged. 
  • Marketing, Sales, & Strategy: The market for scholarly communication continues to grow. Evolving strategies to develop new products, reach new audiences, and find new ways to make research relevant to the world will be increasingly critical. 
  • Professional Development: We recognize that the SSP Annual Meeting serves as an important source for ongoing learning and education within our community. Session proposals that explore this in particularly innovative ways are especially encouraged. 
  • &…: We often receive excellent submissions that are stand-alones—proposals with strong content that don’t fit into one of the set tracks. This track will be a grab bag of these sessions. Whether your proposal is about ethics, early career issues, best practices in editorial and production, library concerns, or anything else, we want to see it! 

Submission Process for 2020

SSP is once again using the ScholarOne abstract submission system for the collection of proposals. All proposals must be submitted through ScholarOne.  A big and sincere THANK YOU to Clarivate Analytics for their sponsorship of SSP’s proposal submission system.  


Note that there are four possible types of session proposals. Submitters must select their session type at the beginning of the submission process for each proposal. You are permitted to submit more than one proposal of one or more types. 

  • Concurrent session: 60 minutes or longer in length (length of longer sessions TBD), held on May 28 and 29. Concurrent sessions are designed for multiple speakers to present a specific topic that will benefit SSP attendees. Successful proposals will include concrete plans for interactivity, the inclusion of new voices, a diverse panel (with respect to gender, race, background, organization type, subject area), and clear learning objectives for the audience. 
  • Sponsored session: 45 minutes in length, held on the afternoon of Wednesday, May 27. These sessions offer value by means of education, information, or professional development to attendees. Organizers may share information about a product or service, but sessions will be most effective if they present case studies/use cases, customer testimonials, timely information about industry issues, best practices, innovative solutions to everyday challenges, roundtable discussions, etc. Sponsors may choose whether attendance is free to all meeting attendees, or by invitation only. 
  • 5-minute preview session: Brief, back-to-back presentations given during a plenary on Friday morning, May 29, showcasing new products, platforms, and/or content from publishers and vendors. Preview session submissions will be accepted at a later date. Keep an eye out for an announcement from SSP. 
  • Posters: In the tradition of academic conferences, SSP is introducing posters for the 2020 Annual Meeting. Poster submissions will be accepted at a later date. Keep an eye out for an announcement from SSP with additional information. 

Tips for submitting a compelling proposal:

  • Your submission should appeal to a broad range of attendees in an engaging way. SSP Annual Meeting attendees value networking opportunities, insight into new developments, and practical applications they can use to advance their careers. Attendees include executives, editors, salespersons, marketing and product managers, librarians, technologists, vendors, academics, and more. 
  • Concurrent proposals should promote audience engagement, ideally throughout the session. 
  • We will NOT consider concurrent session submissions that are focused on a single solution, a single organization, or material that is commercial in nature. Such content is more appropriate for the 5-minute previews session or for sponsored sessions. 
  • SSP deeply values the provision of a variety of viewpoints from an inclusive pool of speakers. Session speakers must reflect diversity of geography, race, and cultural background as much as possible. We strongly consider gender balance in particular. Single-speaker concurrent sessions will NOT be accepted. 
  • The strongest proposals will include the voices of key stakeholders (researchers/academics, librarians, students), will cross formats (books, journals, etc.), and will include perspectives across STEM, social sciences, and humanities. 
  • For concurrent sessions, your submission must be in by the November 15 deadline. Our committee will begin reviewing proposals immediately after this deadline, so we regret that we cannot accept late submissions. Please see the submission guidelines for all the important deadlines. 
  • Please be sure to reach out to us if you have any questions while submitting a session proposal. 

For a more detailed set of submission guidelines, please click here

After reviewing these guidelines, please proceed to the SSP abstract submission site to submit your proposal. Everyone who submits a proposal for concurrent sessions will be notified of the final decision in December, at which time the organizers of the sessions selected for the final program will be able to confirm their participation. Notifications for sponsored sessions will follow in early 2020, with notifications for the five-minute previews sessions and posters to follow. Please see the submission guidelines for other important deadlines. 

Thank you very much for your interest in participating in the 2020 SSP Annual Meeting. We hope to see you in Boston! Again, if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to email

Cason Lynley and Yael Fitzpatrick
Annual Meeting Program Committee Co-Chairs


The use of ScholarOne Abstracts is made possible via a generous sponsorship by Clarivate Analytics.