Why Go Virtual?
As you know, we had planned to being meeting in person in Ottawa this fall, but things change and we are going virtual. Comparing other options, such as postponement or cancellation, going virtual offers many advantages. We maintain our annual event cycle, facilitate knowledge sharing opportunities and collaborate as industry colleagues working towards building a more resilient Canada. There is so much going on, lots to share and we don’t’ want to let not being able to meet in person to slow us down!
It Won’t Be the Same
We are all used to fully immersed events where we are busy for days with lots of activities packed into the time we have. Going virtual is more productive with a number of sessions spread over several weeks having different focuses within the industry. People have so many distractions when working remotely, and we want to make every effort to be the main attraction on everyone’s screens. This will allow attendees better scheduling options that won’t interfere as much with existing activities as several full days may. Many within our industry are in involved in the response and at capacity. We want to ensure that our format will be a professional opportunity within existing commitments. We look forward to more attending and contribute without travel being a consideration.
Here’s How it Looks
We are not just going to take our in-person event and throw that up on a screen. We will be offering single track sessions that include different types of presentations. The virtual event will not allow for as many speakers, so we’ll be choosing the presentations carefully for topical and current information. We aim to make this engaging, collaborative and informative.
We are excited to have this opportunity to innovate and explore new ways to reach an even wider network of people committed to disaster risk reduction in Canadian. The benefits of this new approach:
- Protects the health and safety of attendees.
- Allows for more attendees to participate.
- Avoids attendees having to pay travel expenses.
- Has the potential to increase the diversity of attendees and organizations represented.
- Allows for a reduced registration fee.
- Ability to attract speakers that may not be available to attend an in-person event.
- The opportunity to be innovative and inclusive.
The Symposium is still in the planning stages. Changes are still expected and the inclusion of other components to meet the needs of our attendees and partners can be accommodated.