If you haven’t already received the RFP for the ABA DR Section’s Spring Conference via email (from the ABA itself or on the list serv from Erin Archerd), you can now access it here.  The due date is August 3rd at 5pm ET.  The conference will be in San Francisco on April 20-23, 2017.

From the RFP itself:

Program Proposal Guidelines and Considerations

  • The Conference Committee invites program proposals in three lengths – 60 minutes, 75 minutes, and 90 minutes (there will be only a few 90 minute slots available).  Panel titles and descriptions should be punchy, accurate, and designed to convince people to attend the panel. The title and description will appear in conference marketing materials, website, and onsite materials.

  • The conference planners strongly encourage innovative program formats, and discourage “talking head” panels. Be creative in delivering content to attendees. Use technology, creative formats, audience participation and/or other tools for your proposals. The proposed format of your panel will be a key factor in its review.

  • Proposals should consider the practical and educational needs of the audience.

  • The number of presenters should be appropriate for the subject-matter and duration of the program. No matter the number of presenters, the program should be well-organized and individual presentations woven together.

  • Proposals that list four or more presenters must demonstrate a significant need and specific role for each presenter.

  • Single speaker proposals need to especially demonstrate creativity and the ability to hold an audience for the duration of the conference session.

  • You may list speakers you wish to invite should your panel be accepted, or list the type of speaker you would like to participate, such as “construction arbitrator” or “state court judge.” You should keep in mind the need to adhere to the speaker requirements described above, including the ABA diversity goals for speakers.

  • If you are seeking committee sponsorship of your proposal, follow the appropriate procedures of the particular committee to obtain approval before submitting the proposal.

    Requirements for Speakers/Moderators and Program Organizers

    • A program cannot have more than one speaker from the same organization or firm, moderator included, unless specifically approved by the Section’s Spring Conference Committee.

    • A Program Organizer may be a speaker or moderator on his/her proposed program subject to the foregoing restriction. No moderator/speaker should moderate/speak on more than one 2017 Spring Meeting educational program unless specifically approved by the Spring Conference Committee.

    • Program proposals must adhere to the ABA and Dispute Resolution Section’s diversity goals with respect to speakers. ABA Policy requires all CLE programs with three or more presenters to include at least one diverse presenter. Program Organizers also should consider including qualified young lawyers on panels that are accepted.

    • All conference speakers who are attending any portion of the conference other than their own program must register for the conference. It is the responsibility of the Program Organizer to ensure all their speakers are registered for the conference as a speaker and an attendee for other conference programs and events OR as “speaker-only,” which will limit the speaker to participation in only the one program.

    • The Program Organizer will be responsible for submission of appropriate materials if MCLE is being sought (see below under Program Organizer responsibilities upon acceptance).

Art Hinshaw is a Clinical Professor of Law and the Director of the Lodestar Dispute Resolution Program at ASU Sandra Day O'Conner College of Law. His research and teaching interests focus primarily on mediation and negotiation, often bridging ADR theory and practice. He is an avid writer and contributor to ADR Prof Blog.