SIG Membership, Conferences and Management Best Practices

*SIG Leaders may add to these Best Practices at this Google Doc.   

Membership Benefits: Webinars


SIGSOFT: Webinar Process
Will Tracz, [email protected], 01 October 2013

  • Our SIG has a webinar coordinator that works with speakers and moderators and publicity. We solicit webinar speakers from:
  • Conference keynote speakers
  • Best paper awardees
  • Tutorial speakers
  • Suggestions from members.

SIGUCCS: Peer Webinars
Mat Felthousen, [email protected], 04 April 2017.

  • Method of outreach and continued professional development between conferences
  • “Hot Topics” identified at annual conference
  • Webinars held every 1-2 months
  • Pre-conference “Introductory” webinar for newcomers and on logistics of writing a paper hosted in more timely manner
  • Coordinated through the Secretary of the Executive Committee

SIGART: Peer Webinars.
Yolanda Gil, [email protected], 01 October 2013

  • Advertise via ACM Learning Series
  • A way to attract potential members

SIGHPC: Viability Review 2017

  • SIGHPC has hosted some very well-attended webinars which have set ACM records; most recently our webinar featuring Jack Dongarra set a record for live attendees as a fraction of registrants, with over 39% of registrants attending the event live. Past SIGHPC webinars have also set registration and attendance records for ACM.

Travel Grants


SIGARCH: Professional Travel Scholarships
01 October 2013

  • All ≥33% sponsored conferences
  • SIGARCH surplus plus industrial/partner/NSF donations
  • Supports Transportation and Lodging
  • NOT Registration, need some skin in the game
  • Advisor confirms status and expresses support
  • Two sentences, not a recommendation letter
  • Must be SIGARCH member, but can join after award ($2 online)
  • Not just speakers and authors, includes junior students
  • Awardees report on best paper or experience (which IS read!)

SIGBED: Student Grants

  • SIGBED provides travel grants for selected students to attend CPS Week and Embedded Systems Week. Since SIGBED fund has no restrictions (e.g., compared to NSF fund), it is used to provide travel support for students from under-represented countries whenever possible.

SIGOPS: Professional Travel Scholarships
Jeanna Matthews, [email protected], 01 October 2013 

  • Open up travel scholarship to professionals from under-represented regions and institutions
  • Faculty teaching operating systems who may not otherwise attend research oriented conferences like SOSP
  • Encourage applicants to propose materials that can help others integrate new research results in OS into undergraduate teaching
  • Professionals/researchers from underrepresented regions of the world
  • Encourage applicants to organize reading groups leading up to conference and give talks when they return
  • Update (Robbert van Renesse, [email protected], 9/19/17): we have been providing childcare grants and senior discounts in recent years. We are now providing a general purpose non-student travel grant to conferences that a committee can use to support travel to the conference for various purposes including travel from underrepresented regions/institutions, child care and companion travel, senior discounts, and improve diversity in general.

SIGSOFT: Software Engineering Educators Symposium (SEES)
Will Tracz, [email protected], 01 October 2013

  • Two half-day tutorials covering approaches for teaching programming and software engineering to undergraduates.
  • Prior to Flagship conference (Foundations of Software Engineering)
  • NSF grants helps defray costs of faculty from minority-serving institutions and teaching colleges to attend SEES and FSE.
  • ACM SIGSOFT provides matching funds for (token) speaker honoraria and networking dinner (with speakers & SE leaders)
  • for program/handouts

SIGSOFT: Student Travel Support and Child Care Assistance at Conferences - CAPS
Will Tracz, [email protected], 30 September 2016.

  • CAPS program offers three services to support conference attendance for SIGSOFT student members, SIGSOFT professional members, and non-member undergraduate students:
  • CAPS-GRAD: Travel support for graduate students (only open to SIGSOFT student members)
  • CAPS-UG: Travel support for undergraduate students (open to non-members)
  • CAPS-KIDS: Travel support to help defray cost of childcare (open to SIGSOFT student and professional members)
  • Awardees trip reports published in SIGSOFT Newsletter

SIGMM: Student Travel Grants
Shih-Fu Chang, [email protected], Oct. 6th, 2016

  • SIGMM provides travel grants for selected students to attend major conferences of SIGMM (ACM Multimedia, ACM International Conference on Multimedia Retrieval, and ACM MMSys). At ACMMM, students receiving the travel grant are also invited to a lunch forum with close interaction with senior members and industry leaders.

SIGACCESS: Travel Scholarship
Shari Trewin, [email protected], Oct. 6th, 2016

  • SIGACCESS provides travel grants for practitioners, researchers, members of advocacy groups, and individuals with disabilities to actively participate in the ASSETS Conference. Emphasis is placed on applicants who are not already well connected with the community, and who would bring a new perspective to the event. People with disabilities and from under-represented countries are often supported.

SIGWEB: Student Travel Grants
Dick Bulterman, [email protected], Oct. 7th, 2016

  • SIGWEB provides travel grants for selected students to attend major conferences.

SIGCOMM: Geodiversity Travel Grants
S. Keshav, [email protected], Oct. 7th 2016

  • SIGCOMM has several travel grants targeted towards under-represented areas, including:
    • Grants to young researchers to travel to the flagship conference
    • Grants to winners of best paper awards of regional conferences to attend SIGCOMM
    • Grants to students to attend regional networking meeting
    • Grants to allow keynote speakers to travel to regional networking conferences
    • Grants to allow TPC members from under-represented areas to attend in-person TPC meetings

SIGARCH: Childcare and companion travel grants
Sarita Adve, [email protected], Oct 7, 2016

  • SIGARCH provides funds for a companion to travel to professional meetings to assist with childcare and disability needs.
  • We also provide grants for other childcare needs, including on-site childcare.
  • See for details.

SIGPLAN: Travel grants: Students, professionals, childcare, companions
Mike Hicks, [email protected], Oct 7, 2016

  • PAC provides travel support for those to present paper at a conference. It also provides childcare and companion travel support. See

SIGCHI: Travel Grants
Helena Mentis. [email protected], Oct 7, 2016

  • SIGCHI Student Travel Grant: For students to present at any SIGCHI sponsored or co-sponsored conference; for those “who lack other funding opportunities”.
  • SIGCHI Gary Marsden Student Development Fund: “sponsoring postgraduate students (Master or PhD degree) from and currently based in developing countries to attend SIGCHI sponsored or co-sponsored conferences”

SIGUCCS: Travel Grants
Mat Felthousen, [email protected], April 4, 2017

  • Intended for individuals in higher ed institutions to participate in the annual conference. Grants cover cost of registration, hotel, and one half-day pre-conference seminar
  • Individuals must be full time employee in a higher ed institution. Preference is given to institutions that have not been represented at the conference for past 5 years

SIGMICRO: Travel Grants
Pradip Bose, [email protected], April 6, 2017

  • Student travel grants to all sponsored conferences; also to some new workshops in emerging new areas of strategic value. No a priori requirement that the recipient must be a member of SIGMICRO - but we strongly encourage recipients to join SIGMICRO. 
  • Special travel grants to minority outreach and mentoring workshops.

SIGIR: Student Travel Grants
Diane Kelly, [email protected], September 19, 2017

  • We provide student travel grants to all sponsored and co-sponsored conferences (last year we spent about $200K).
  • Students are required to be members of SIGIR. They also have to have a paper accepted (full, short, or DC) and be the presenter.
  • Up until this point, we’ve been giving awards to anyone who meets the requirements above, but this is creating situations where we are giving some groups a lot of money and the specific grant amounts are often small. This year, we are switching to a more competitive model, where the scholarships are set amounts (based on national or international travel).
  • It would be useful to know how much different SIGs allocate to student travel grants and to different conferences, including formula for allotments, as well as how application and selection happens if that is a part of the awards process.

SIGOPS: Student Travel Grants
Jeanna Matthews, [email protected], September 19, 2017

  • Try matching each sponsored students with a specific sponsoring organization and give them a thank you note to fill out and send back to sponsor (hand written thank you notes are very good!)- put name and address of sponsor contact on the envelope.. student writes and mails
  • (Robbert van Renesse, [email protected], 3/22/18) I have been sending personal thank you emails on behalf of SIGOPS as well.

SIGMOBILE: Student Travel Grants

  • SIGMOBILE provides student travel grant funding to our main conference upon request by conference organizers. We ask that SIGMOBILE student members receive preference and that funds are often used to fund students that do not qualify for government-provided travel grants (e.g. NSF).

SIGHPC: Viability Review 2017

  • Remain focused on the next generation of professionals. SIGHPC does this by providing travel grants to students and the Intel fellowships.
  • SIGAPP: Student Travel Grants (STAP, Student Travel Award Program), Jiman Hong, [email protected], 22 March 2018
  • STAP for students from developing countries who would otherwise have difficulty attending the SIGAPP conferences.
  • Supports Transportation and Lodging, NOT meals. 
  • Advisor/Dean should confirm the status and expresses support
  • Must be SIGAPP student member



SIGPLAN: Differential Subscriptions, Online vs Print
Jeremy Gibbons, [email protected], 30 September 2016.

  • Was “online membership” and “membership”
  • Now “membership” and “print membership”

SIGARCH: Architecture Blog
Sarita Adve, [email protected], 07 October 2016

  • In January, we will move from a newsletter style publication to a blog format.

SIGCOMM: Computer Communication Review Online
S. Keshav [email protected],07 October 2016

  • We moved to an online-only format in July 2016. Papers are collected using and automatically moved to DL and to the newsletter
  • The newsletter accepts short (6-page) papers after a thorough review, and, more recently, allows unlimited length paper as long as they are reproducible.

SIGUCCS: Online format
Mat Felthousen, [email protected], April 4, 2017

  • Switched to an online format October 2014
  • Prior to 10/2014 was a quarterly email, restricted to current members

Pradip Bose, [email protected], April 6, 2017

  • Includes conference participation survey data
  • We try to make sure that the newsletter provides information useful to members - complementary to what the website provides
  • MICRO Hall of Fame announcements and SIGMICRO Oral History are key differentiators


  • SIGBED Review is a quarterly newsletter
  • Proceedings of workshops related to SIGBED mission and contributed papers on related topics
  • Open access to all volumes

SIGAPP: ACR (Applied Computing Review)
Jiman Hong, [email protected], 22 March 2018

  • Regularly distributing quarterly electronic publications since spring of 2012.
  • Contains selected papers which were presented by prominent researchers who have atteded SAC, and RACS.
  • All papers should be expanded, revised, and peer-reviewed again.

Prakash Panangaden, [email protected], 12th October 2018

  • Regular quarterly publication, distributed electronically since July 2014.
  • Includes technical columns which appear irregularly, every issue has at least 2 such columns but usually closer to 3 or 4. The areas are: semantics, verification, logic and complexity, security, and automata theory.
  • Community news, conference reports are also presented. 

Educational Activities


Naehyuck Chang, [email protected], 01 October 2013

  • Around 25 best PhD research posters (<40% acceptance rate)
  • Travel grant support for the SIGDA PhD Forum presenters
  • Jointly operated with DAC A. Richard Newton Young Student Fellow (YSF) Program
  • 60 fresh graduate students are awarded through a selection process
  • Travel grant support
  • Present posters together with the SIGDA PhD Forum presenters
  • Attend the DAC technical sessions with mentor support
  • SIGDA PhD Forum presenters become mentors of the DAC A. Richard Newton YSF students

SIGCSE: Doctoral Consortium
Amber Settle, [email protected], October 6, 2016

  • Currently held in conjunction with the computer science education research conference (ICER)
  • Growing interest (approximately 20 Ph.D. students participating in each of 2015 and 2016)
  • Travel support for Ph.D. student participants and discussants who run the consortium
  • Posters and brief presentations are made during the ICER conference to introduce the community to the new researchers
  • Growth in computing education research requires active support of the SIG

SIGACCESS: Doctoral Consortium
Shari Trewin, [email protected], October 6, 2016

  • Held in conjunction with the ASSETS Conference, supports ~10 PhDs
  • Participants present a poster at the conference
  • Sponsored by NSF, and often by industry sponsors

SIGMIS: Doctoral Consortium
Jeria Quesenberry, [email protected], Oct 10 2018

  • Held in conjunction with the annual CPR conference - a full day session held before the conference begins for DC participants and faculty mentors only. Student also participate in the conference poster session to present to wider audience.
  • SIGMIS provides travel grants to doctoral students who are accepted for participation.
  • DC participants also encouraged to participate in the conference student research competition
  • SIGMIS also supports the DC at the International Conference on Information Systems (ICIS) through the Association of Information Systems (AIS)

SIGARCH: Lightning Mentoring Sessions
Sarita Adve, [email protected], October 7, 2016

  • We ran a successful pilot, “Meet a Senior Architect” at ISCA’16. Several senior architects signed up to mentor graduate students in one-on-one 30 minute sessions. This was a resounding success as assessed through informal feedback and a formal survey. We plan to expand this program.

SIGCHI: Special Funding Initiative for HCI Summer/Winter Schools
Helena Mentis, [email protected], October 7, 2016

  • A summer or winter school is a program of lectures, classes, tutorials, hands on technology sessions, exercises or group work organised by a group of SIGCHI members for the benefit of SIGCHI student members. 

SIGLOG: Logic Mentoring Workshop
Prakash Panangaden, [email protected], 19th September 2017  

  • A pre-conference one-day workshop where senior researchers talk about their experiences and the possible obstacles that arise in one’s early career.  Topics that were covered in the first two years included: dealing with imposter syndrome, unreasonable expectations from you supervisor, the joys and perils of collaboration.  The web pages for the first two are and  This follows the model of the established SIGPLAN PLMW workshops.  Our third workshop was held at FLoC 2018.

SIGIR: Sponsorship of Summer and Autumn Schools
Diane Kelly, [email protected], September 19, 2017

  • Through our Friends of SIGIR program, which provides money to support local IR events, we annually sponsor multiple IR summer schools, including the European Summer IR School, the Russian IR summer school, the (German-held) Autumn IR summer school.

SIGMM: Viability Review 2017

  • The Open Source Software Competition track and the Grand Challenge track at ACM Multimedia conferences have been extremely effective. The former attracts some of the best known and high-impact software tools for multimedia analysis and machine learning, including the widely used deep learning tool Caffe published in 2014. The Grand Challenge track provides a showcase for large scale challenging problems initiated by industry leaders. One notable example is the Yahoo Flickr 100 million images and videos with CC licenses (YFCC100M) that has been highlighted in Communications of ACM in the Feb issue of 2016.

SIGMOBILE: Mentoring Workshop for Students and Doctoral Consortia
Marco Gruteser, [email protected], Sep 19, 2017

  • Our flagship conference host a student-organized workshop to encourage interaction between students and familiarize them with conference organization
  • Our larger conferences offer doctoral consortia where students present their dissertation plans and receive mentoring from a senior panel of researchers
  • We started the Asian Student Symposium on Emerging Technologies (ASSET), an event to mentor students from underrepresented regions and encourage them to attend SIGMOBILE conferences. The events are co-located with our conferences and offer special registration arrangements. The first iterations are taking place in South East Asia, with future expansions to other regions planned.

SIGMOD: Viability Review 2017

  • We have a great culture of doing experiments. Not all these experiments go well - for instance, we were a bit ahead of our time when we started "experimental repeatability" in 2008. But, the community has an experimental spirit not only in its research, but also in its structures and processes.

SIGOPS: Summer School on Advanced Topics in Systems (SATIS)
Robbert van Renesse, [email protected], Mar 21, 2018 

  • We’re organizing our first summer school, to be held this summer.  We’re looking for a mix of senior Ph.D. students, young faculty, and advanced engineers.  Interest seems to be good, and we had little trouble finding enough funding.  We plan to hold another in China in 2020.

Managing Conference Food & Beverage Costs

SIGMOD:Viability Review 2017

  • We have great "institutional memory" in our executive committee. For instance, SIGMOD has a conference coordinator who has helped organizing the SIGMOD / PODS conference; we first established this role 20 years ago. The coordinator knows all the little things and traps that can go wrong and how to fix them. Without this institutional memory, it would have not been possible to react to an emergency like relocating the SIGMOD / PODS 2017 conference on short notice. 

Hanan Samet, [email protected], 01 October 2013

  • Contract for pitchers of water for breaks and sessions. Usually free.  Each water bottle is $7.  Much loss due to walking away to the room
  • No granola bars, packaged snacks, or whole fruits in breaks. Easy to carry away  Instead, order cookies or brownies
  • Limited amounts of soft drinks at breaks.  Much loss just like water bottles
  • Keep statistics from year to year on food consumption at breaks vis-a-vis attendance numbers so know how much to order
  • Breakfast should consist of bagels and scones.  Better than light pastries as most people cannot eat more than one scone or bagel.
  • Make sure that hotel does not take unused breakfast items (or snacks)  away at the end of the breakfast or breaks.  Insist that they be placed in the rear of the room for use by laggards or at next break
  •  Keep statistics on banquet attendance vis-a-vis conference registrants so don’t over order
  • Hotel will always be willing to accommodate an increase in he orders at the last minute as long as a reasonable amount
  •  Use hotel for the banquet as it is a big ticket item.  Ensures meeting the Food and Beverage minimums.
  • Avoid holding conference social events off site, conference attendees want to network, don’t have to go to a museum to network, off site events require buses which are very expensive
  • With amounts saved, can splurge and have a four to five course filet mignon banquet, everyone will talk about the great food that they had
  • Insist on real orange juice at breakfast
  • Refuse colored water or lemonade options which are much more  profitable for hotel
  • SIG rep should make final decisions at breaks and breakfast about refills, not automatically by Hotel rep

PC Committee Selection


Will Tracz, [email protected], 01 October 2013

  • A tool that analyzes publications and program committee service in the top conferences in Programming Languages and Software Engineering.
  • The tool supports the following conferences: ASE, ECOOP, ESOP, FSE, ICFP, ICSE, ISMM, ISSTA, OOPSLA, PLDI, and POPL and it covers the years 1995-2013.
  • Publication data was obtained from DBLP, and program committee data was scraped from various conference web sites.

Registration Fees


SIGARCH: Low Student Registration Fees
01 October 2013

  • E.g., $250 vs. $550 (Student v. Member, Early)

SIGCOMM: Student Registration Fees
S. Keshav, [email protected], Oct. 2016

  • Student reg fees are always as low as possible. Our rule of thumb is that the cost of an early student registration is equal to the marginal cost of food and beverages. So, a student is paying for only this portion of conference expenses, and if we have a flood of students, we don’t make a loss.

Mat Felthousen, [email protected], April 4, 2017

  • Registration fees are reduced for SIG members Tiered rate structure: member, non-member, student/emeritus, and one-day registration

SIGMICRO: Ensuring Student Member Discount
Pradip Bose, [email protected], April 6, 2017

  • We have stipulated that ACM SIGMICRO membership should allow students to get sponsored conference registration fee discount without necessarily becoming ACM members. However, enforcing this in league with the associated conference steering committee has been a problem for us. Seeking feedback.

New Conferences


Pradip Bose, [email protected] 01 October 2013

  • Help start new technical workshops and help convert strong workshops to conferences, with special attention to minority-organized workshops)

S. Keshav [email protected] Oct 2016

  • The SIG has been sponsoring roughly one new conference each year for the last few years. We’re looking for a strong community of interest and leadership from well-known community members.

Review Process


SIGITE: Three-Tier Approach to Conference Paper Selection
Rob Friedman, [email protected], 01 October 2013

  • Step 1: Double blind review by volunteers (to encourage community participation).
  • Step 2: For papers with mixed reviews, a second-level blind review by program committee members (with subject matter expertise).
  • Step 3: Program and executive committees select accepted papers from both double-blind and committee’s positively reviewed submissions.

SIGMIS: CPR Conference Best Paper Award - Fast-tracked for Journal Publication
Jeria Quesenberry, [email protected], Oct 10, 2018

  • As CPR conference submissions are reviewed - they can be nominated for the Magid Igbaria Outstanding Conference Paper. A separate committee reviews and selects best paper award. The award is announced at the CPR conference.
  • The best paper is then fast-tracked for publication at the Data Base journal of SIGMIS.

SIGPLAN: Empirical Evaluation Checklist
Michael Hicks, [email protected], Mar 23 2018

  • SIGPLAN has developed a checklist for assessing empirical evaluations carried out in PL research. The goal of the checklist is to help reviewers and authors ensure the evidence presented by the evaluation matches and supports claims made in the paper.
  • This checklist might be useful for other areas of CS as well, with some adjustment.
  • A web page with the checklist, its rationale, and a FAQ about it is available at

Video Recording


Jeff Jortner, [email protected], 01 October 2013

  • Contract with company to record ($30K)
  • 8 simultaneous rooms
  • Content available to purchase at multiple resolutions for various platforms
  • Content available in DL 3 months after conference

S. Keshav, [email protected], 06 April 2017

  • The SIG leadership got bids from various companies two years ago, and chose MeetEcho
  • All SIG-sponsored conferences are encouraged to use MeetEcho for both live streaming and to load captured, post-processed video to the ACM DL
  • Video from the last several years’ SIGCOMM flagship conferences (since 2011) are available on DL and highly appreciated by student members

Marco Gruteser, [email protected], Sep 19, 2017

  • General chairs of our larger conferences are asked to provide recordings
  • To reduce cost for smaller venues, the SIG has organized a video volunteer team that brings SIG-purchased basic recording equipment ~$2500 to the venue and records the talks. The SIG covers full student travel for one experienced student volunteer to travel to the conference. This has been the main mode of operation for the past 2-3 years.
  • Content is available on SIGMOBILE Youtube channel and is in the process of being transferred into the DL

Attracting Conference Attendees


Janice Sipior, [email protected] 01 October 2013

  • Journal Editors Panel
    • Better understanding of particular journals
    • Discuss how to extend work presented at the conference for submission to the journals
    • Assist researchers targeting the journals for publication consideration
    • Offer advice for rejected manuscripts
    • Networking opportunity
  • Industry Panel
    • Provide a context for the conference theme from an industry perspective
    • Discuss how to extend research for impact & relevancy beyond contributions to academia
      • e.g., to industry, economy, society, culture, environment, etc.
    • Networking opportunity
    • Increase SIG visibility in the local area
    • Promote new membership

Archive of Past Conference Artifacts


SIGACCESS: Accessible Conference Guide 
Shari Trewin, [email protected] 07 October 2016

  • Covers a range of things to consider when planning a conference that will be accessible to people with disabilities. Including:
    • Location and Hotel Selection: Access to facility, stage, seating, rooms, parking, etc.
    • Budget: Interpreters, helpers/assistants
    • Website Online registration: Accessibility & dietary needs
    • Catering
    • Local arrangements
    • Conference sessions: Presentations, large print program
    • Proceedings
    • Social activities 

SIGMIS: Viability Review 2017

  • Repository of materials used to transition CPR conference committee experience.



SIGKDD: Viability 2017

  • Applied data science invited talks: We institute this program for each KDD conference a few years ago. It has been a resounding success. In this program, we invite some industry technology leaders who have done successful data science applications or have led teams with great accomplishments in data science to share their real-world experiences and difficult research problems that they face in their applications. In every conference, the rooms for such talks are packed. Frequently, the conference organizers have to change to big rooms to accommodate strong interests.
  • Innovative program: We have an unwritten tradition that every year’s KDD conference will (almost have to, due to peer pressure) introduce some innovations to the conference program. At the opening ceremony and the business meeting of each conference, we highlight those programs. Now, every year’s conference organizers feel they have to have some innovative activities or programs, which make the conference fresh and more interesting each year. In some cases, it generates great ideas.

Submission/Review Services


Rob Friedman, [email protected], 28 October 2013

  • We moved to CMT last year and were very happy with the results, and thank KDD for their involvement with developing and maintaining the system

SIGHPC: Linklings
Cherri Pancake, [email protected], 25 October 2013

  • SIGHPC uses Linklings for most of our stuff from submissions to proceedings.
  • They handle the HTML contents, index, etc., as well as generating the spreadsheet that has to go to Adrienne for the e-copyright system. I think the "normal" online proceedings package includes fully-interlinked electronic proceedings web pages: an overview page; pages organized by event type, track, date, and room; and an author index; each includes search functionality.
  • In addition to the basic information (session title, session chair, paper title, authors, abstract, links to PDF documents), they have a variety of configuration options for what info is included (e.g., rooms, dates, times, tracks). The pages are customizable for fonts, colors, etc.
  • They also hosted online programs.

Srinivasan Keshav, [email protected] , 25 October 2013

  • All SIGCOMM-sponsored conferences use the highly customizable, free, open source HOTCRP software that I can highly recommend

SIGWEB: openconf
Simon Harper, [email protected], 22 October 2013

  • Openconf a great system, and modular based so can handle programme creation, the review process and if there isn't a module for what you want Robert’s team will often be able to put on together for your needs. It's open source or if you want all the backup and hosting services the you pay a fee.



SIGACCESS: Enabling full participation for people with disabilities
Shari Trewin, [email protected], 6 October, 2016

Anti-Harassment Policy


SIGCOMM: Clarifying ACM’s Anti-harassment Policy
S. Keshav [email protected] Oct. 2016

  • We have been working with a team of SIGCOMM members to operationalize the ACM anti-harassment policy. Our version of the policy is on the SIGCOMM website.

SIGIR: Clarifying ACM’s Anti-Harassment Policy
Diane Kelly, [email protected], September 19, 2017

  • At last year’s SGB, I was inspired by Keshav’s (above) mention of making this policy more visible, so we made some modifications, added it to our website and advertised (I was surprised how few people knew of it). Since this time, the ACM updated this statement and circulated.

CACM Research Highlights


SIGARCH: CACM RH Nominations
Sarita Adve, [email protected], 07 October 2016

  • We have a committee that uses PC input and a post-conference audience survey for our nominations. We also use the reviews of the candidate papers to help create a strong nomination. More details are at the SIGARCH website

SIGPLAN: CACM RH Nominations
Michael Hicks, [email protected], 09 September 2017

  • We have used a RH committee for a while, and keep track of papers our committee has nominated (even those not selected by CACM).  Highlights can be found on the SIGPlan website.   

Marco Gruteser, [email protected], Sep 19, 2017

  • We have appointed a research highlight committee that selects SIGMOBILE research highlights biannually. SIGMOBILE Research highlights are advertised through various SIG communication channels and featured in our GetMobile publications. They are submitted as nominations for CACM research highlights.

SIGMM: CACM RH Nominations
Alan Smeaton, [email protected], Oct 12, 2017

  • Following the presentation at the March 2018 SGB meeting announcing a shortage in the pipline of candidate paper submissions, SIGMM formed a selection committee to choose from among the best papers at our conferences in the previous 12 months, which, if any, paper would be most suited as a RH nomination. This was done, a paper nominated, and we expect to repeat this annually.

Dealing with Contingency and ACM Overhead


SGB/SIGOPS: Contingency and ACM Overhead
Jeanna Matthews, [email protected] , 07 October 2016

  • Adding after conversation with Paul Beame as well
  • When SIG has healthy budget, Good to subsidize the ACM overhead and contingency, way of putting profits from one conference back into next iteration of that conference
  • Impact of not passing on the ACM overhead is especially high - can make a big difference in organizer’s perception of ACM when that fee does not come out of corporate support or attendees fees

Conference Competitions


SIGMM: Conference Annual Competitions.
Alan Smeaton, [email protected], 19 September 2017

  • SIGMM’s flagship conference, MULTIMEDIA, runs an Open Source competition each year since 2004. Researchers submit a paper describing some new O/S software on GitHub or elsewhere, submissions are reviewed and the best get to make a pitch and demo at the conference. A jury selects the “winner”, they get a prize and lots of visibility.
  • SIGMM’s MULTIMEDIA Conference also runs an annual Grand Challenge track since 2009 where several industry sponsors each year donate some data, typically very large, and set a fairly loose challenge to use that data for something really novel. Researchers submit a paper describing what they did, these are reviewed and the accepted submissions make a short pitch describing their achievement. A jury selects the “winner”, they get a prize and lots of visibility.

SIGHPC: Student Cluster Challenge Reproducibility Challenge
Jeff Hollingsworth, [email protected], 19 September 2017

  • SC16 (and again in SC17), we have made the reproducibility of results pas of the student cluster challenge. The first year the students got several journal papers published based on their studies. Also, the paper (from SC15) earned a results reproduced badge in the ACM DL. More information is available at InsideHPC

SIGKDD: Viability Review 2017

  • This is an annual competition to solve some difficult and interesting data mining problems. It has been an excellent event for students to gain hand-on experiences and to learn to work together to solve very hard data science problems. The Cup has been making great impacts. In the past, the organizers have to actively talk to people in industry to look for interesting projects and problems. In recent years, companies are competing to have their projects selected by the KDD Cup. We are aware several other conferences have learned from SIGKDD and started their competitions (and unfortunately, they are now competing with us for interesting projects).

Climate Conscious Conferences


Consider using the co2calulator to compute CO2 cost due to air travel after a conference has completed. Or consider using it to help with planning conference location (but many factors come into play here). More ideas for mitigating the impacts of conferences on climate change in this SIGPLAN Climate Committee’s draft report.

Practitioner’s Tracks at Conferences


Robbert van Renesse, [email protected], Mar 21, 2018

  • SOSP organizes “Birds-of-a-Feather” sessions in the evenings where practitioners can discuss any topic that may be of interest to the community. They can be quite popular.


  • SC has a seperate technical track in the papers program that is for “State of the Practice”. They are reviewed, presented, and appear in the proceedings like regular paper. They review committee is carefully selected to focus on unique needs of this type of paper. There are also “Birds-of-a-Feather” sessions geared towards practitioners (along with many other areas).


  • Is not doing anything along these lines, but my personal experience from my former life is that industry professional societies (e.g., AIChE) will have session chairs review submitted abstracts and accept or reject based on merit of the topic, not quality of a paper. Two problems these conferences experience:
    • Most companies are unwilling to share their most cutting edge work, so material can be dated
    • Submitters enjoy presenting but not writing. It can be tough to get them to submit a paper and sometimes leads to a conference policy of, “No paper, no podium”.

Production Services for Conference Publications (Sheridan and Alternatives)


Robbert van Renesse, [email protected], Mar 21, 2018

  • SOSP proceedings is online only at this point and we rely 100% on ACM DL for serving the publications. We post TOCs at As far as I know, we never made use of Sheridan or alternatives.

SIGEVO: Linklings Also for Production
Marc Schoenauer, [email protected], 22 March 2018

  • We were very happy with their submission system (see 2.5 above), so we asked them whether they could do the DL production - and they did
  • 4 times cheaper than Sheridan (+ software devpt the first year - but no-one should be asked to pay for this again) and a better service!
  • No change of system from initial submission to camera-ready very responsive, from daily issues to feature requests (human size company).

Membership Rates & Minority Outreach


Pradip Bose, [email protected] 01 October 2013

  • Ensure tangible, visible minority representation in your executive committee with key roles for minority EC members
  • Support mentoring & minority student outreach workshops (e.g. CRA-W)
  • Sponsor eminent minority speakers through programs like the ACM Distinguished Speakers’ Program (DSP)
  • Pursue seed travel funding augmentation to selected minority Ph.D fellowship/scholarship awardees (industry) and perhaps also post-docs
  • Help start new technical workshops and help convert strong workshops to conferences, with special attention to minority-organized workshops)

SIGMM: Women and Diversity Lunch Panel
Shih-Fu Chang, [email protected], Oct. 6th, 2016

SIGMM organizes every year a lunch panel and interaction session at the flagship conference ACMMM dedicated to promotion of success and opportunity of women researchers and researchers of diversity groups in multimedia.

SIGCOMM: Networking Networking Women
S. Keshav [email protected] Oct. 2016

  • Before the first day of the conference, we have a dinner for all attending women, who can network and mentor with each other.

SIGOPS: Diversity Workshop
Robbert van Renesse, [email protected], 9/19/17

  • We run a Diversity Workshop co-located with each SOSP, our flagship conference. See for a recent instantiation.

SIGIR: Women in IR and Diversity and Inclusion Luncheon
Diane Kelly, [email protected], September 19, 2017

  • This effort was a bottom-up effort that grew from our members. At this point, we support it by making space for it at our conferences and advertising it. The program has varied each year; at this year’s conference people were invited to give brief overview of their research and there was also a keynote, and open discussion. 
  • This year, we sponsored a Diversity and Inclusion Luncheon at the SIGIR Conference (flagship conference). The luncheon program consisted of several presentations about different aspects of diversity (we take a broad definition) and discussion. (Thank you, CHI! We looked at your past events when planning this one!)

Marco Gruteser, [email protected], Sep 19, 2017

  • Together with the networking networking women organization we offer a special lunch meeting at our key conferences. At MobiCom 2016, we organized a full day N2Women workshop to celebrate the 10-year anniversary of the organization and to offer mentoring to students, researchers, and faculty. The workshop was subsidized by MobiCom so that it could offer free registration.

SIGMOD: Viability Review 2017

We have created a policy that at least one woman must be in the short list for all awards and main positions.

SIGSAC: Women in Cyber Security (CyberW) Workshop
Daphne Yao, [email protected], 10/30/17

  • The inaugural workshop sponsored by CRA-W and SIGSAC is co-located with ACM CCS ‘17, our flagship conference on security. The workshop emphasizes promoting and encouraging females and other underrepresented groups for senior positions and leadership positions. 
  • Finally, we are trying to gather concrete information on how to understand and improve diversity in the computer security community.
  • In addition to sponsoring conferences with an aim of diversity, such as the Women in Cybersecurity Conference, we are exploring funding a study for the Women and Minorities in Cyber Security Working Group that will collect data about individuals to examine their career trajectory to identify ways to encourage more women and minorities in the field of cybersecurity.

SIGARCH: Women in Computer Architecture (WICARCH)
Natalie Enright Jerger, [email protected] , 12 October 2018

  • Created the Women in Computer Architecture subcommittee.  Chair of subcommittee is SIGARCH EC member. WICARCH administers all SIGARCH funds related to diversity and inclusion
  • Funded creation of a new WICARCH website
  • Created a slack-based mentoring group -- allows informal, asynchronous mentoring between students and faculty/industry practitioners. Post weekly mentoring questions, celebrate recent accomplishments, AMA with senior colleagues, etc. Builds a sense of community, creates a sense of belonging. Great response -- 150 members in the first year.
  • Social media: twitter and facebook posts to celebrate contributions of women to architecture.
  • Blog post that highlights some of these efforts.


Increasing Membership


01 October 2013

  • All conference non-members attendees get free membership

SIGHPC: Viability Review 2017

  • Approximately, 35-40% of SIGHPC’s non-student members are SIG only members. They tend to be at the boundary of CS and other fields. Having them in the broader ACM community via SIG only membership increases the reach of ACM.

Robbert van Renesse, [email protected], March 21, 2018

  • Based on informal conversations, people in our community feel it’s too much trouble to renew their membership after X times. Some have become lifetime members of ACM and don’t feel the need to renew their SIGOPS membership. Unfortunately, there is no such thing as lifetime SIG membership.


Volunteer Management


SIGWEB: Volunteer Jobs
Simon Harper, [email protected], 01 October 2013

  • Don't expect volunteers to do multiple jobs or have multiple responsibilities (or if you do expect them to do a less good job); so think of a small group of elected officers with appointed expandable exec so that jobs can be devolved. Volunteers are interested In specific things; so instead of thinking what jobs need doing think what jobs would be interesting to volunteers, and try and combine those that are required with those that people want to do.

SIGCSE: Formal Volunteer Process
Amber Settle, [email protected]. October 6, 2016

  • Ensuring that the community has new input and grows requires a formal process for volunteering
  • We have a form on our website that allows people to indicate an interest in various activities for the SIG.   
  • A member of the SIGCSE Board tracks the submissions and directs them to appropriate organizers in the SIG Making participation in the SIG activities open to newcomers is a goal of the approach

SIGMM: Rising Stars Symposium
Shih-Fu Chang, [email protected], Oct. 6th, 2016

  • Starting 2015, SIGMM organized a very successful annual symposium highlighting plenary presentations of selected rising SIGMM members on their vision and research achievements. Each presentation is paired with a senior member to have dialogs on the future direction of the specific subarea. This helps promote the success of the young rising members and encourage them to take on volunteer leading roles in the community. An ACM Book is currently being edited based on the 11 topics presented by the rising leaders in 2015.

SIGIR: Student Affairs Chair and Industry Liaison Chair
Diane Kelly, [email protected], September 19, 2017

  • Student Affairs Chair: This position was created (roughly) to, “make sure that every student attendee is improving her or his network within the community and no student is left behind in the corner.” This person was also tasked with managing the Student Liaisons program. Student Liaisons Program. “The goal is to make sure SIGIR students have the best network for their future career, by better engaging with the IR student community through student representatives. The liaisons will seek to support students by organizing social events at conferences, helping students network, and gathering feedback through student specific forums to aid the SIGIR community as a whole.” We had a call for applications and then selected roughly two students to represent 3 large geographic regions. 
  • Industry Liaison Chair: The purpose of this position is to maintain and build connections with those in industry, and to gather their feedback about programming and future directions. We are in the process of appointing three liaisons (+ 1 Chair) to carry-out this work.


Steering Committees


SIGWEB: Steering Committee Involvement
01 October 2013

  • For SIGs with cross disciplinary conferences (possibly with other SIG involvement) insist on one of your exec being in their steering committee while one of their steering committee comes to the SIG exec.


Global Activity


Will Tracz, [email protected], 30 September 2016

  • iSoft: Indian branch of SIGSOFT - receives free access to our newsletter and electronic email distribution of messages
  • cSoft: In the process of being organized - similar to iSoft
  • India and South America Conference Speakers: We provide travel support for 2 invited speakers/year to conferences. The speakers must be best paper award winners of previous year’s SIGSOFT conferences

SIGSAC: Viability Review 2017

  • One major point of discussion has been whether to create another SIGSAC conference for security research based on Europe, analogous to the AsiaCCS meeting. For example, IEEE now has an IEEE European Security & Privacy conference to go with its original Security & Privacy conference. I have been wary of splitting the ACM CCS community geographically. In addition, the ACM CCS meeting is still regarded as being far superior to the AsiaCCS meeting. Instead, we have chosen, with the help of volunteers to host the ACM CCS conference, to host the conference in Europe once every three years. This has both energized the ACM CCS conference, as the European editions have been embraced excitedly, and maintained the excellence of all the ACM CCS editions. I note that ACM CCS is the only one of the four “major” computer software security conferences to be held in Europe at any time.


Robbert van Renesse, [email protected], Mar 21, 2018

  • SIGOPS has very active chapters in Europe (Eurosys) and China (CNsys)
  • We organized SOSP in Shanghai last year which was extremely successful, with no drop in North American or European attendance. We will likely rotate SOSP location now according to the following schedule: North America East Coast, Europe, North America West Coast, Asia. We also sponsor Eurosys in Europe and APsys for the Asia-Pacific region. Both attract very international audiences.
  • We are in-cooperation with a variety of smaller conferences. They appear to serve certain localities well, but it’s not clear that these conferences have good quality control.
  • The Summer School we are organizing is held in Europe this year. The next one will be held in China two years from now.

SIGMIS: Viability Review 2017

  • Use of Dropbox as an easy means to share files among the Executive Committee and others
  • Strong connections among core members that are trying to grow the community and give early career faculty/researchers an opportunity to hold leadership positions in conferences.