The Organizing Committee of the 2020 Bioinformatics Community
Conference (BCC2020, https://bcc2020.github.io/) has come to the
difficult decision to hold the conference online.
We are making this decision after much consideration of the ongoing
spread of COVID-19, striving to take the most socially responsible
action while maintaining a forum in which our community can share
their work and discovery. It is hard to predict what things will look
like in July, but given current reports and models, it seems unlikely
that the situation will be back to “business as usual”. We also
considered that, even if some people were able to attend, it is
possible that many people would still find it difficult to travel to
Toronto. We believe that making this decision now will allow us to
focus on organizing an engaging conference in this new format.
We will be inviting our community to engage in new ways, and hope that
BCC2020 will be an important space for discussion for the Open Source
The virtual meeting will still take place as planned, on July 18-21.
There will be opportunities for training before the main meeting, and
a CollaborationFest starting on July 22. We are discussing how to
arrange the schedule to allow for participation across the globe; more
details will be coming soon.
Registration will open in a few weeks, and fees will be lower than for
an in-person meeting.
The abstract submission deadline has been postponed to April 30th.
Abstracts will follow the usual submission and review processes.
There are many details to be worked out – for example, a meeting
schedule that takes into account time zones, videoconferencing
technology, ways to enrich our online interactions (while
acknowledging that nothing can replace the vital social interaction
that in-person meetings provide), etc. Many of these aspects are new
for us too; we welcome your input, particularly if you have
suggestions about how to make our first Virtual Bioinformatics
Community Conference a success.
We are looking forward to exploring this new meeting format, and we
hope you will join us.