Submit a Conference Concept

Thank you for your interest in submitting a conference concept. Keystone Symposia is a not-for-profit organization managed and directed by the scientific community. Keystone Symposia develops and administers international symposia of the highest quality on topics of interest to researchers in biology, medical science and agriculture with the goal of facilitating interdisciplinary information exchange for the benefit of society.

Overview of the conference programming process

The Keystone Symposia conference portfolio is developed by our Scientific Advisory Board (SAB), which is composed of 100+ scientists with wide expertise in molecular and cellular biology. The SAB meets in person twice a year in January and June to identify and review conference topics two years in advance (e.g., our topics for the 2019 season will be identified during the January 2017 meeting).

At the January meeting, the SAB reviews concepts and identifies new topics and potential organizers to develop the future conference portfolio. The Keystone Symposia staff then contact the proposed organizers and ask them to submit a conference proposal based on SAB recommendations by mid-May.

At the June meeting, the SAB peer-reviews all of the proposals to evaluate scientific merit, balance and diversity, and other factors and recommend revisions to the organizers. The SAB also uses the June meeting to evaluate the overall programmatic balance of the portfolio and has the option of "fast-tracking" additional topics into the portfolio to fill any gaps. The final portfolio consists of approximately 60 meetings.

We are always delighted to receive new ideas for conferences to be included in our portfolio.

Submitting a conference concept or proposal

Keystone Symposia welcomes conference concepts for consideration by our SAB (submission form). All that is required are the contact details of the primary contact person, a list of the suggested organizers, a tentative conference title, and five short statements that indicate why the meeting is important, why it is timely, important concepts to be included, placement recommendation (e.g. North American versus global placement), and industry perspectives (if relevant)). Please see the following link for an example of a conference concept (Conference concept example).

Meeting topic: The Hippo signalling pathway

Why is it important for this conference/topic to be included in the portfolio?
The study of developmental signals (e.g. Hedgehog and Wnt) has led to major leaps in our understanding of stem cell function, normal physiology and disease. The Hippo pathway not only defines final tissue size by controlling developmental growth, but is also key to specifying stem cell identity and proliferation, to regeneration and tissue repair, as well as numerous cell fate decisions. The meeting will provide a forum for new ideas and an opportunity for new investigators to enter the field.

Why is this the right time to develop this conference/topic?
Many major pharmaceutical companies are currently targeting the Hippo pathway. These drug development projects will be maturing in 2018, and would greatly benefit from input from the field. The timing is therefore ideal. Furthermore, this is the only major international conference on Hippo signaling (it has previously been held in 2013 and 2015) and is therefore crucial to encourage new collaborations.

What are the important concepts that will be included?
The field has only explored some of the potential functions of the Hippo pathway, and its relationships with other signalling pathways. Therefore, these relationships will be a central theme of the conference. The conference will also emphasize the fact that Hippo signaling sits at the interface between diverse inputs (cell-cell contacts, polarity, mechanical forces, and metabolism). This will attract scientists from developmental and stem cell biologists, systems biologist, biophysicists, and tissue engineers to clinicians.

Where do you recommend that the conference be held (country or continent)?
Given the current demographics of the field, we suggest North America as a venue, with Europe as an alternative choice.

What industry perspectives will be included in the conference (if relevant)?
There is increasing evidence, (e.g. YAP as a key mediator of resistance to Raf and MEK inhibitors), suggesting that Hippo pathway members are promising targets for tumor therapy and regenerative medicine. Potential therapeutic target molecules in these pathways will be highlighted in the conference.

Concepts can be submitted at any time of the year through this simple submission form. However, the optimal time to submit a concept is between August and October (i.e. several months prior to the January SAB meeting). If the topic is selected by the SAB at their January meeting, the Chief Scientific Officer (CSO) will contact you in February or March and invite you to submit a detailed conference proposal for review by the SAB in June.

It is highly recommended that you contact Keystone Symposia's CSO, Dr. David Woodland (Woody) at woody@keystonesymposia.org prior to preparing your submission.

Submit Concept

Thank you for your interest in Keystone Symposia.


 For questions regarding the scientific content of your program, please contact:

   David L. Woodland, Ph.D.
   Chief Scientific Officer, Keystone Symposia
   Phone: +1 970-262-1230 ext. 131
   FAX: +1 970-262-0311
   E-mail: woody@keystonesymposia.org


 For administrative questions, please contact:

   Allison Ogdon
   Director, Program Development & Implementation
   Keystone Symposia
   PO Box 1630
   160 U. S. Highway 6, Suite 200
   Silverthorne, CO 80498
   Phone: +1 970-262-1230 ext. 143
   FAX: +1 970-262-0311
   E-mail: allisono@keystonesymposia.org