Using Scientific Meetings to Enhance the Development of Early Career Scientists

Scientific meetings are important to the development of early career ocean scientists, yet little documentation exists regarding how meeting planners can develop activities that will be most useful to this group. Based upon the authors’ experience gained through activities of the Scientific Committee on Oceanic Research and the World Climate Research Programme, as well as ideas offered by colleagues from other organizations, meeting organizers should take the following steps in planning early career activities: (1) form a subcommittee that will plan early career activities and include an early career scientist on it, (2) seek outside financial support for early career activities and for early career scientist travel support, (3) determine the criteria participants must meet to secure travel support, (4) design a registration form to collect information useful for designing activities for early career scientists, (5) plan oral and poster sessions with a variety of opportunities for early career scientists, (6) consider which social media will be best for communicating with early career meeting participants, (7) set aside a “career lounge” at the meeting, and (8) conduct a post-meeting survey. It is important to plan and announce all early career events and opportunities well before the meeting.