Abstract Detail

Education and Outreach

Freire-Fierro, Alina [1], Guerrero, Mario [2], Jaramillo, Edison [3], Picón, Gabriel [4], Valdebenito, Hugo [5], Melo, Maria Margarida da Rocha Fiuza de [6].

Organizing an international multi-lingual scientific conference in a small country, lessons learned.

The Asociación Latinoamericana de Botánica (ALB) initiated organizing botanical conventions in Latin America since 1938. 80 years after the first congress, Ecuador organized the XII Latin American Botanical Congress that was held in Quito in October 2018.  There were more than 1000 participants from 33 countries, who presented 1300 presentations that were evaluated by 75 colleagues. At this event we had 9 guest speakers, 35 symposia, 6 workshops, 6 round tables, and 5 field-trips, among other activities. Financially speaking, we came close to breaking even. Despite many obstacles, we organized this event with several innovations that we feel greatly contributed to its success: a) We invited colleagues and organizations not only from Latin America but also from outside the region; b) The congress was in the main languages spoken in the region and in science: Spanish, Portuguese and English; c) We had reduced registration fees for non-professional botanists and/or people with traditional knowledge; and d) We obtained personal loans from members of the organizing committee. With the following factors in place, we would have greatly improved the organization of this event: a) Institutional logistics, technological and financial support for organizing committee members starting at the beginning of the event's organization. b) Governmental financial support. c) Enough financial resources to hire experienced personnel/companies/software from the beginning. d) Tradition in the country for similar events. e) Strong and experienced communications and marketting teams to publicize the event well in advance and also to keep updates in all available social media outlets. f) A strong, large, experienced and participatory scientific community to operate the various scientific committees. g) Public, employer, and academic recognition for participation by local scientists. h) A relational database to simoultaneously manage society’s memberships, registrations, abstracts and the program.  Similar future scientific events carried out in Ecuador or in other small countries should be more likely to succeed if these factors were met and/or if a standard of procedures document was available.

Related Links:
Link to the last XII Latin American Botanical Congress

1 - Universidad Técnica de Cotopaxi, Carrera de Turismo-CAREN/UTCEC Herbarium, Salache, Latacunga, Cotopaxi, Ecuador
2 - Universidad Técnica de Cotopaxi, Sede La Maná, La Maná, La Maná, Cotopaxi, Ecuador
3 - Ministerio del Ambiente, Calle Madrid 1159 y Andalucía, Quito, Pichincha, Ecuador
4 - Fundación Dos Aguas, Av. Amazonas s.n., Quito, Ecuador
5 - Universidad San Francisco de Quito, Ciencias de la Vida, Cumbaya, Quito, Ecuador
6 - Instituto de Botanica, Nucleo de Pesquisa Curadoria do Herbario, Avenida Miguel Stefano 3687, Agua Funda, Sao Paulo, SP, 04301-902, Brazil

Latin America.

Presentation Type: Oral Paper
Number: 0005
Abstract ID:740
Candidate for Awards:None

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