Header image for Call for Abstracts


IMCC6 is moving online. This means that more people are likely able to attend with the lower registration rates and no need to travel. With this in mind, we have re-opened our abstract submissions portal until Sunday 12 July 23:59 UTC, or until full.

We have limited space and time to review and so will be accepting up to approximately 200 abstracts for talks and posters. We have decided to allocate these spots on a ‘first come, first served’ basis if needed - so get typing!

Unfortunately, we are unable to accommodate more than one talk per person, so if you already have an abstract accepted please do not submit another and if you’re submitting an abstract at this point, please limit this to one.



Information for abstract submission
Please click here for information on abstract submission in Russian, Bengali, Italian, French & Japanese.

Abstract format

Proposals for oral presentations, speed talks, posters, and OceansOnline sessions must be submitted in abstract format. Oral presentations and posters may be submitted to either accepted special symposia (open or closed) or to the general call (see list below). Abstracts must be submitted electronically; web submission is the only format for submission*. All abstracts are strictly limited to 300 words.

*Please visit the Accessibility page if you need the submission form in a different format for accessibility reasons.

List of general topics:
(This list is a guide for those submitting abstracts. Others topics of interest are absolutely welcomed)

  • Fisheries & aquaculture
  • Food security & nutrition
  • Wellbeing & health
  • Citizen science
  • Traditional ecological knowledge
  • Marine & coastal communities & culture
  • Conservation technology
  • Blue growth & a sustainable ocean economy
  • Climate & the changing oceans
  • Marine & coastal governance
  • Conservation marketing &/or psychology
  • Ocean crime
  • Marine pollution & plastics
  • Marine & coastal restoration
  • Marine & coastal biodiversity
  • Knowledge exchange
Student awards

An award for best student presentation will be given for oral presentations, speed talks, and posters. If you wish to be considered for these awards, please indicate your preference during abstract submission.

Review process

Reviewers have access to all information contained in the abstract (with the exception of personal identifiers). Abstracts are blind reviewed by at least three individuals. To increase the probability that your abstract will be selected for presentation, please consider the following criteria carefully:

  • Relevance to the overall theme of IMCC6 (Making Marine Science Matter)
  • Application to marine conservation / clear connection to conservation science, policy, management, practice
  • Relevance to the session theme, where applicable
  • Novelty of the topic – how the subject addresses a new question or problem, or approaches traditional questions from a novel perspective or in a new region. This is not a strict requirement but may give your abstract an advantage when all other criteria are met.
Submission limitations & registration

All lead authors of accepted abstracts must register and be paid in full by the early registration deadline in April 2020. Authors failing to comply with this rule will not be included in the IMCC6 program.

Contribution limitations:

  • No individual may be first author on more than one contribution in each of the following categories: special symposium presentation, oral presentation, speed talk, or poster. E.g., one individual may be first author in a poster and an oral pesentation, but cannot present two oral presentations.
  • Individuals may organize a symposium in which they do not present and then present in another category.
  • Symposium organizers may present in their own symposiums.
  • Workshop and Focus group organizers are also free to submit an abstract.
  • Individuals may make a submission to OceansOnline in addition to any they have made to IMCC6.
Financial support

IMCC6 will have limited travel grants available for delegates from low-income countries. Please forward your abstract submission confirmation email to travelgrants@imcc6.com to indicate your interest in being considered for a travel grant.

Contributed presentation formats

Oral presentations (12 minutes)

These talks will sit under the accepted special symposia and other general topics. Oral presentations will be limited to 15 minutes: 12 minutes for the presentation and 3 minutes for questions. Abstracts for oral presentations can be submitted to accepted special symposia (open or closed*), or to the general call. The latter will be grouped by topic during the conference. Please choose from the list of general topic areas when you submit your abstract to facilitate this process. If your abstract is accepted but cannot be accommodated as an oral presentation, we may offer you the opportunity to present a speed talk or a poster.

* Abstracts submitted to Special Symposia (closed) must be accompanied by the session code provided by the organizer.

Speed talks (4 minutes)

If your topic is of interest to a wide range of people and you would like your presentation to lead to an extended conversation with colleagues, you may wish to submit an abstract for a speed presentation. The speed talks will be grouped into an exciting, fast-paced session and the time limit will be strictly enforced.


Posters are a great opportunity to showcase your topic or work in a creative, visual way and to have conversations with the other delegates about your topic. Abstracts for posters can be submitted to accepted special symposia (open or closed*), or to the general call.Posters will be presented at a special evening event held during IMCC6 and will be available to view at other times during the conference.

Session formats


Do you have a technical skill useful for ocean conservation? Teach it to colleagues from around the world! Proposals for short courses should be submitted in abstract format, including a brief description of the workshop topic, the expected outcomes, and how it will be run. Further details will be obtained for successful proposals at a later date.

Workshops will be help pre-congress on the 22-23 August and can be of a duration from a half to two full days. There will be a fee for delegates to attend workshops to cover overhead costs, equipment and catering. Unfortunately SCB Marine are unable to provide financial support for the organizers of workshops. All workshop attendees will be required to register for IMCC6.


An IMCC symposium is a great way to get colleagues from around the world together to tackle a conservation issue in depth! They address critical or cutting-edge marine conservation topics. An abstract should be submitted to explain the subject of the symposia. Symposia are two hours in duration and can host approximately 6-7 talks. The talks within symposia are of a duration of 10-12 minutes each with time reserved for discussion. There are two types of symposia at IMCC6:

  • Special Symposium (closed)

An abstract is submitted with a list of expected contributors. The symposium organizer curate a range of talks to focus on a very specific issue.

  • Special Symposium (open)

An abstract is submitted without a list of expected contributors. This topic is then opened to the marine conservation community to submit their proposed talks for the organizer to review and curate. This is a great way to explore an emerging issue or to bring a range of global practitioners together.

One thing to remember is that both of these options require that the organizer curates their session. If a session does not have enough interest or sufficient contributed talks to make it viable it may be cancelled.

Focus groups

Focus groups bring together people with diverse expertise to develop tangible and actionable outputs — such as a list of recommendations, a publication, a policy briefing or a white paper — on a specific marine conservation issue. Proposals for Focus groups should be brief and include the following: (1) a synopsis composed of the goal or purpose, justification and outcome for the focus group (2) organizational structure including duration, format, expected number of participants, and technical requirements.

They can be held over a range of durations from an hour to two days. They will be held outside of the main program, either pre-conference (22-23 August), at lunch, or before/after the main conferrence program or post conference (28 August). For focus groups held pre- or post- conference  there will be fee for attendees to cover overhead costs, equipment and catering. All attendees will be required to register for IMCC6.