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The Twelfth International World Wide Web Conference 
20-24 May 2003, Budapest, HUNGARY 


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WWW2003 Call for Panels

The WWW conferences are well known for the quality of the panels. A panel provides an opportunity for the exploration of current issues and emerging opportunities. It offers an interactive forum that engages panelists and audience in lively discussion of important and often controversial issues. Suggested panel topics are listed here but we are open to any suggestions. Our main aim is that the panels should be fun: lively, interactive, informative and relevant. The issues, panelists and their positions should be controversial to raise interest. The panel must transmit a clear message.

A successful panel has three main components: a topic, a format and the panelists. A panel is a team effort. Thus, while its topic is important, good coordination, execution and management are vital for success. A simple abstract or set of abstracts is not sufficient.

Suggested topics for panels include:

  • Pushing the boundaries of the Web
  • The Grid and Web Services
  • Keeping the Web open and non-proprietary
  • Web standards: de-facto vs. de-jure
  • Commercialism of the Web -- good or bad?
  • Web Services & Semantics
  • The Semantic Web and Databases: have databases missed the boat?
  • Can there be trust on the Web?
  • Privacy vs. Freedom on the Web
  • What will it take to make the Semantic Web real?

Suggested formats for panels include: a balloon debate, role-playing or game-playing.

You might forbid the use of visual supports, ask people to give two minute position statements without slides, make each panelist use an analogy, or bring a prop. We would like to avoid formats in which panelists will be tempted to give impromptu paper presentations leaving little time for discussion.

A panel is a discussion between several characters. Panelists should naturally be experts in their topic but must also be lively and controversial. Choose a mix of panelists that don't all hold the same opinions.

How to submit a panel to WWW2003

Proposals (approx. 1500 words or 5 pages) should be submitted in ASCII or HTML formats by email to the Vice-Chair Carole Goble. Proposals must include at least the following information:

  1. Panel title
  2. Abstract
  3. Name(s), affiliation(s), and complete mailing address(es) (including phone, fax, e-mail) of the proposer(s).
  4. Name, biographical information and a position statement or "role" for each panelist
  5. Name and biographical information of the moderator (if different from the proposer)
  6. A detailed description of the panel topic, format and execution, covering the points discussed below
  7. Panel length (preferably 90 minutes)

A 1-2 page panel description will be included in the conference proceedings, but this will be quite different from the panel proposal submission. The panel proposal should convince us that you have a good panel design. We will give you instructions for writing the proceedings page(s) if your panel is accepted.

Pre-Submission Feedback

The Panel Programme Committee will be pleased to give feedback to your ideas for panels before you submit them. Final proposals should be sent to Carole Goble.

The Panel Programme Committee

Vice Chair
Carole Goble

University of Manchester , Manchester, UK
tel: +44 161 275 6195 carole@cs.man.ac.uk

Deputy Chair
Bernard Horan

Sun Microsystems Ltd, Cambridge, UK
tel: +44 1223 418925 bernard.horan@sun.com

Rakesh Agrawal

IBM Almaden Research Center, San Jose, U.S.A.
Tel: +1-408-927-1734 ragrawal@acm.org

Lloyd Rutledge

CWI, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
tel: +31 20 592 40 93 Lloyd.Rutledge@cwi.nl

Important dates:

Optional Intent to Submit (enabling feedback) by November 1, 2002
Proposals should be received by November 15, 2002
We will respond to submissions by January 31, 2003

How to design a panel proposal for WWW2003

Proposals must provide the Program Committee with information for determining which panels will best engage the WWW2003 audience. Acceptance depends on several factors.

Panels should raise important issues that will interest the WWW2003 participants. They should attract people to the conference, and they should "pull in" people at the conference to attend the panel session.

Some important points to focus on:

  • the intended audience
  • the detailed topic
  • the take-home message of the panel
  • the team comprising the panel, focusing on the experience and the function/role of the moderator and each panelist
  • intended coordination of the panelists in preparation for the panel in advance of the conference
  • your approach to ensuring debate, controversy and, in general, a lively session that will engage the audience

The moderator plays a very important role, and is responsible, as a conductor, for the overall structure of the panel session. For example, the moderator might challenge the participants with questions after the (short) opening statements from each. However, the moderator should not participate as a panelist. To be a success, panels rely on strong preparation and coordination between the moderator and the participants. This coordination must take place well before the conference.

A panel is not a set of independent talks about a given topic. The audience should be encouraged to participate for between 1/3 and 2/3 of the session.

When appropriate, we encourage panel organizers to provide a list of references, resources, leads, etc., as a handout.


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