Technical guidelines for Session Chairs at ASSW 2024

The Arctic Summit Science Week-2024 (ASSW) will be held in hybrid format, allowing participation on-site and online. This guideline document has been developed to ensure smooth running of the sessions and positive conference experiences for all participants. The guidelines cover all meetings held as a part of ASSW-2024 programme, including Business and Community Meetings and the Arctic Observing Summit. Session Chairs are responsible for reading the guidelines in advance of the meeting and adhering to them during the ASSW.

If you have questions or comments, please do not hesitate to contact the local organising committee (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.).

Key deadlines

  • Thursday 7 March 2024 (2 weeks before the event start) – prepare the Session Running Order and share the link to the Google Form with all speakers to upload their presentations;
  • Monday 18 March 2024 (3 days before the event start) – make sure that speakers in your session have uploaded presentations via the Google Form, and share details of any remote speakers with the organising committee;
  • 15 minutes before the session on the day – be in the room ready to start the session 

Before the Session

Session Description & Session Running Order

Ahead of the meeting, the Session Chair should:

  • Ensure that the Session Description included in the programme on the ASSW website is accurate and up to date ( Each session description should include the date and time of the meeting (note that the programme is displayed in local time, GMT), format (open or closed; hybrid or on-site only), and event description (summary of the meeting content). If any changes are required for the Session Description, please email the local organising committee (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.).
  • Prepare a running order for the session and share it with the local organising committee: (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) by Thursday 7 March 2024. The running order should include details of any content that requires the use of technical equipment (e.g., presentations given by on-site participants; presentation given by remote participants, break-out discussions, pre-recorded presentations, etc), and any changes in the room lay-out.

Google Form for content sharing

If your session includes content from more than one presenter and requires a slide deck, we kindly ask you to share the link to the Google Form with the speakers in your session and ask them to submit the presentation in widescreen PowerPoint format by Monday 18 March: Google Form Link. 

If necessary, the slide deck can be updated on the day before the start of the session. Remote participants can share presentations from their own devices, but we still ask them to upload a back-up copy via the Form.

Session Room

Please make sure to be in the meeting room no later than 15 minutes before the start of the session.  

  • A technician will be in the meeting room to help you get familiar with the equipment.
  • Make sure that all presenters are in the room and are familiar with the running order of the session.
  • If relevant, make sure that the technician has all presentations required for your meeting ready on the computer in the room. Using the laptop provided is preferred, but presenters can use their own if needed.

Meeting Holding Slide

A standard meeting holding slide with the title and the time of the meeting and the conference logo will be prepared by the organising committee. We will use this slide on the screen before the start of the meeting as on-site and online participants are gathering. You are welcome to switch to the specific content of the session after the start of the meeting.


We will use Zoom for connecting all online participants to all hybrid sessions of the ASSW 2024.

Open hybrid sessions: all conference participants will be able to access the Zoom links via a special password-protected website that will be shared with all registered conference participants before the event.  

Closed sessions (by Invitation only): the Session Chairs will receive Zoom links before the conference to share directly with all the invited participants of their session. Please remember that it is the Chair's responsibility to distribute the link to the attendees. Please note that all participants of closed meetings must register to attend ASSW.

During your Session

Responsibilities on the day

Each session will have a professional Technician in the room.

Responsibilities of Technician:

  • Start Zoom meeting and meeting recording.
  • Ensure all AV equipment is working (laptop, screen, microphones), troubleshoot any technical issues as necessary.
  • Help Session Chair to pre-upload the session content (presentations) on the meeting laptop.

Responsibilities of Session Chair:

  • Ensure the timely running of the session and finish by the end of the allocated time slot.
  • Ensure appropriate interaction with all meeting participants, including monitoring of the online chat box in the Zoom meeting. If you need assistance with this task, make sure to delegate it to a nominated co-chair / assistant.
  • Ensure all meeting participants use a microphone when speaking.
  • Remind all meeting participants of the ASSW Code of Conduct.
  • Inform the meeting participants that the session is being recorded.
  • Remind participants of the current session as part of housekeeping and of following sessions in closing remarks.

Big meetings (30+ participants) will also have support from a conference Volunteer who can help the Session Chair to pass hand-held microphones to the audience, monitor questions in the chat, and other tasks as required by the Session Chair.

If you have any further issues or questions on the day, please ask the Technician or Volunteer to contact the Organising Committee for further assistance.

Practicalities during your Session

Starting the Session

  • Clearly introduce the meeting title and rules at the beginning of the meeting. We also advise you to briefly outline the running order (explain how long the meeting will take and what to expect from it).
  • Remind all meeting participants of the ASSW Code of Conduct.
  • For online participants to understand what is said in the meeting room, on-site meeting participants MUST use the microphones in the room when speaking. Remind online participants to mute their microphones when not speaking.

Sharing of Presentation Materials

All presentation slides and other materials will be shared via Zoom for both on-site and online participants to ensure that the online participants can see them.

Virtual presenters will be using the “share screen” function within Zoom. In-person presenters will present as normal. A feed of the presentation will be broadcast into the Zoom room in a “Camera + PowerPoint” layout.

The material must be uploaded to the computer in the meeting room (Windows based!) and run from the laptop. Remote participants can share the screen to present their slides when relevant.

We recommend only sharing slides / screen in Zoom when needed during the meeting, but otherwise do not share your screen to ensure that on-site participants can see the online participants. The technician will be able to manually remove the “screen share” if required.

Session Recordings

All sessions will be recorded. The session recordings can be made available to Session Chairs upon request after the ASSW 2024 but will otherwise not be publicly available. All recordings will be deleted two months after the end of the ASSW 2024, so Session Chairs that need a recording should ensure to contact the ASSW 2024 organisers (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) as soon as possible after the event. If you do not wish for the session to be recorded, please inform the Technician before the start of the meeting.

Discussions during your Session

The challenge of hybrid meetings is to ensure that both on-site and online participants are treated equally during the discussion. A few guidelines will help you as the Chair to ensure that all participants have a good experience in your session:

  • all participants, no matter if on-site or online, must raise their hands (or use the raise hands function in Zoom) and wait for the session chair to invite them to speak. When possible, alternate between on-site and online speakers to ensure a fair inclusion of online participants in the discussion. This is essential to the online experience. If chairs do not include online attendees, it becomes very disengaging for those not there in person.
    • Speakers should state their name before making comments to ensure that both online and on-site participants know who is speaking.
    • on-site participants:
      • must use one of the microphones in the room when speaking to ensure that online participants can hear them.
    • online participants:
      • Can ask questions / make comments by:
        • raising their hands and waiting for session chair to ask them to speak.
        • typing in the chat box or the Q&A box.
      • Can contact the session chair / technician via the chat box.

Breakout Groups

Please avoid using break-out discussions for hybrid meetings if possible. If this is necessary for the meeting, the break-out function can be activated, but please let the Technician know about your requirements and plan before the start of the meeting (and in this case arrive earlier in the meeting room to ensure this can be set up before the start of the meeting). Please make sure that there is an allocated online moderator for each online break-out. Please do not hesitate to contact the local organising committee (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) if you have further questions.