Header image for Call for abstracts

Important deadlines

Submission for symposia & workshops is now OPEN! Submit here now - deadline 18 November 2019.

13 January 2020 - Call for abstracts for talks and posters opens.


Information for proposal submission

Abstract format

Abstracts must be submitted electronically; web submission is the only format for submission*. All abstracts are strictly limited to 300 words.

Proposals for symposia, workshop and focus group sessions must be submitted in abstract format, including: (1) a synopsis of the session’s goals, purpose, and justification,  (2) a description of the anticipated outputs of the session, and (3) organizational structure including format, expected number of participants, and technical requirements.

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


We are passionate about encouraging diversity at IMCC6. Unfortunately, certain demographics, particularly women and people who identify as female, have been historically underrepresented at scientific conferences. Recent research demonstrated that a conference has more women speakers across the board when more women lead symposia. To support this, we are offering a 20% discount on registration fees to female lead organizers of successful symposium, workshop and focus group submissions. We are also extending this discount to lead organisers from low-income countries.

Review process

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

  1. ​Relevance to the overall theme of IMCC6 (Making Marine Science Matter)
  2. Application to marine conservation / clear connection to conservation science, policy, management, practice
  3. Quality of the proposal
  4. Outputs - proposals should clearly denote the proposed output for the session e.g., whether it is a published action plan, workshop report, white paper, proposal, journal article/ special collection of articles.
  5. 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 proposal an advantage when all other criteria are met.
Submission limitations & registration

All organizers of accepted proposals and their invited speakers and attendees 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.

No individual may give more than one presentation in each of the following IMCC5 categories: symposium, contributed paper, contributed poster. However, they may organize a symposium in which they do not present and then present in another category. Symposium organizers may present in their own symposiums. There is no limit on the number of organizers per session, but organizers should play a substantial role in bringing the session together. Individuals may make a submission to OceansOnline in addition to any they have made to IMCC6.

Financial support

It is the responsibility of organizers of symposia, workshops, and discussion groups to obtain funding for their own expenses and those of their invited speakers or invited participants. SCB and the Local Organizing Committee are not responsible for obtaining funds to support speaker travel to the meeting and cannot guarantee that any support will be available. However, IMCC6 will have some limited travel grants available for delegates from low-income countries. Please follow us on twitter or keep an eye on IMCC6.com, applications for these grants will open in early 2020.

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 sessions

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.

  • Open symposia

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.


Contributed presentation formats

Talks (12 minutes)

These talks will sit under the accepted symposia and other broader topics. If you have an issue you really want to discuss in detail - submit a proposal for a Symposia!

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.


A great opportunity to showcase your topic or work in a creative way and walk people through it. Posters will be presented at a specific event held at IMCC6 and will be available to view at other opportunities over the conference.