Mini-symposium Instructions

What is a NER Mini-symposium?

A Mini-symposium is a session which is devised to have a free format that can be talks, or panel discussions  or a combination of both.  Topics should encompass to extend the interest of larger scientific communities such as neuroscience or diversity/career-development/industry. Organizers of scientific Mini-symposium must submit 1-page abstract papers related to the theme of their mini-symposium. Career development and industrial panels are waived from that obligation

The organizers work together to craft a session of up to 120-minutes.

Examples of a scientific mini-symposium themes are:

  • Technologies for circuit function manipulation
  • Therapies for the restoration of movement in spinal cord injury
  • Neural Manifolds in Neuroscience
  • Sensory encoding and relevance to neuroprosthetics

Examples of diversity/career-development/industrial mini-symposium themes are:

  • Women in Engineering
  • Neural engineering in developing countries
  • Industry or academia?
  • How to design a successful grant application
  • The neural start-up world

What should I submit?

To submit the application for a thematic min-symposium you need:

Scientific Mini-Symposia

  • An abstract of maximum 2500 characters (including spaces) describing the rationale of the session and why is important for a broad conference audience.
  • List of organizers with a brief synopsis of their career/research goals (max 5 lines).
  • There must be a 1-page abstract paper per each speaker that will be linked to the session.
  • Please indicate the title of the submitted 1-page abstract.
  • Speakers should be the first authors of the 1-page abstract, but not necessarily.
  • Organizers can be speakers.

Career-development/industrial Mini-Symposia

  • An abstract of maximum 2500 characters (including spaces) describing the rationale of the session and why is important for a broad conference audience
  • List of organizers with a brief synopsis of their career/interests (max 5 lines)


Who-is-who in a mini-symposium?


  • Session Organizers:
    • Proper Submission of the Proposal Proper Submission of the Proposal from the conference website
    • Open and prompt communication with the organizing committee and/or staff.
    • Ensuring that all deadlines and requirements for the session planning and execution, as defined by the organizing committee, are met.
    • Timely execution of the session.
    • The session organizers are the individual who submit the proposal to the conference committee, act as leaders and coordinators for the session development and ensures the successful and timely execution of the session. 
  • Session Speaker(s): for scientific mini-symposia these are the first authors of the submitted publication. For career-development/industrial


When is the mini-symposium?


An accepted session proposal will be assigned a date and time at the discretion of the conference organizing committee members.  Each accepted session will be scheduled in the conference program for a maximum of 120 minutes.


Can my session take place on the day of my choosing?


All scheduling of sessions is completed by the conference organizing and programming committees.  Requests may be submitted to the committee for a special accommodation but cannot be guaranteed, as the committee decisions are made with the full scope of the conference in mind.


How long and how many speakers?


Each proposal should include a maximum of 6 speakers for an allotted time of up to 120 minutes.  However, the conference chairs reserve the right to constraint a session duration for organizational purposes. Precise allotted time slot will be communicated upon acceptance.


Should I recruit speakers before I propose and organize the mini-symposium?


Yes. Whereas potential speakers must be included on your proposal submission. It is critical to make sure they are willing, able, and committed to present and are committed to participating in the proposed session.  A strong proposal will include a list of speakers who have committed to attend and will submit a 1-page abstract.


Are mini-symposium speakers required to register for the conference?


Session speakers and organizers are required to register and pay their applicable admission fee to attend the conference.  Acceptance of a session Proposal is not indicative of complimentary registration or financial support. The organizer is required to register for a Full Conference rate.


Are Papers part of a proposal automatically accepted?


Papers are not accepted automatically even if a mini-symposium is approved. In fact, the final approval of the mini-symposium may depend on the acceptance of a sufficient number of submitted manuscripts for that symposium.


If the symposium is cancelled but some of the papers were accepted, the authors presentation be included in the general program and not as part of a thematic session.


How do I submit my proposal?


All proposals must be submitted on the approved template on the main conference website.


How does review work?


Review and Decision for the Proposal


  • The committee will begin reviewing proposals after the initial submission deadline has passed.
  • Following the review, the committee will advise the corresponding proposer of either the acceptance or rejection of the proposed session.
  • If rejected there is no further action, and the session will not be included in the conference program.
  • If Accepted the proposal will move into scheduling.




  • Shortly after the final submission deadline, the program committee will schedule the sessions which met the required steps and provide a date, time, and room assignment for the session.