Annex to the ADHO conference protocol

This document is a work in progress, and the Conference Coordinating Committee Chair should be consulted on any questions.

Conference venue, solicitation of bids

The ADHO Conference Coordinating Committee (CCC) will solicit bids for the conference venue according to the following procedure:

  • Invitations to bid will be issued six months and three months before the conference that occurs three years before the target conference date for the bid cycle. (For instance, for the conference in 2019, the invitation to bid would be issued three months before the 2016 conference.)
  • Preference will be given to bids which enable the CCC to rotate the conference geographically on a 3-year cycle (so since the 2016 conference was chosen to be in Europe (Krakow), the 2017 conference is to be held in US/Canada (Montreal), and the choice for a 2018 conference was open, but was made with a preference for sites outside of Europe, the US, or Canada (Mexico City)).
  • The CCC will discuss bids with the bidders to enable them to present the most viable bids possible.
  • Bids will be discussed by the ADHO steering committee at the conference three years prior to the target venue, and a decision will be made at that time.
  • Guidelines for bidders are available on the ADHO website, with deadlines, advice on funding, and other details.
  • The chosen LO(s) has/have two months after ADHO SC vote to sign the Memorandum of Understanding; they are engaged by it, as well as by the Conference Protocol, annex and appendices.

Program Committee

The International Program Committee (PC) shall consist of not more than 12 and not fewer than 8 voting members (not including the Program Chair or Local Organizer(s)) designated by the executive councils of the constituent organizations, as well as the non voting-members listed in item 2.g of the Conference Protocol). Each chapter may designate members up to a maximum specified in this annex; this maximum is determined by identifying an even divisor of a number falling within the number range above. Responsibility for identifying the appropriate number of members and updating this annex accordingly lies with the CCC, subject to the approval of the ADHO steering committee. Designating members of the PC is a right of the constituent organizations, not a requirement.

It is strongly recommended that the PC be appointed at the conference two years in advance of the target conference date (i.e. slightly before the 2017 conference for a committee working on the program for the 2019 conference) and that they have their first meeting at that conference. At that meeting, the program committee must elect a vice-chair. It is also strongly recommended that members of the PC attend the conference the year prior to the one for which they are on the PC, as well as the year of the conference they have helped to plan. In selecting members of the PC, constituent organizations should take care to verify that the members are willing and able to take on the time commitment required and are reasonably likely to be able to attend the intervening conferences. At least one member from each constituent organization needs to have served on a prior PC. However, new perspectives are also valuable, and the PC should implement rotation of committee members.

ADHO and in particular the CCC will try to explore new methods of communication for the PC, such as video-conference, conference calls, and perhaps face-to-face meetings, to facilitate discussion.

Program Committee Chair and Local Organizer

It is expected that there will be discussion and cooperation between the constituent organization and the steering committee in coming to a decision about the appointment of the Program Chair. It is important that the Program Chair be experienced in running such a process, and it is highly desirable that a Program Chair should have served on prior program committees in this community. The Program Chair and Local Organizer(s) should have a face-to-face meeting, either at the conference the year prior to the one they are planning, or at some other time..

Choice of keynote speakers

The Program Committee must approve all keynote speakers in consultation with the Local Organizer(s). However, since the financial burden of the speaker costs rests with the LO(s), it is important that the PC consult with the LO(s) about feasibility of speaker choice. The LO(s) should have veto power in this matter. Choice of keynote speakers has an important impact: it sets the tone for the conference and affects how the conference is promoted; keynote speakers should be chosen with these goals in mind. Keynote speakers should be selected well in advance, so that they can be announced at the conference a year in advance. Invitations to keynote speakers are issued by the LO(s). The Busa Award winner, selected by the ADHO Awards Committee, will also present a keynote (every third year); Busa Award winner expenses will be covered by ADHO. The Zampolli Award winner, selected by the ADHO Awards Committee, will present a keynote every third year; Zampolli Award winner expenses will be covered by ADHO (see Award Committee Protocol). If the criteria listed in item 2.h of the Conference Protocol prove difficult to balance a supplementary lecture could be organized with the financial support of ADHO, similar to an approach used at DH2014.

During the conference, the LO(s) will organize the official announcement of award designed to help students or young scholars present at the annual conference (see Conference Bursary Awards): the Paul Fortier Prize for the best young scholar paper of the conference.

Reviewing of papers

Authors of accepted papers from the past two years should be invited to serve as reviewers; reviewers should also be encouraged to recommend additional reviewers. A call for reviewers should be sent out every two years. ADHO will support a database to store information about member activities including conference reviewing, journal reviewing, mentoring, and other activities. It is the responsibility of the Conference Coordinating Committee to maintain an up to date list of reviewers, using the support database provided by ADHO. Normally there will be at least three reviews for each proposal.

In addition to reviewers' comments, other relevant factors may affect the PC's decision to accept or reject a paper, for instance the desirability of maintaining geographic and thematic breadth, or the strategic importance of a given paper or author to the associations.

ADHO has discontinued the practice of anonymizing papers during the review process.

Conference Organization and Financing

a. Financial organization: see item 3.a

b. Registration fee

Registration fees: Registration fees are set by the LO(s), but should be kept as low as cost recovery will allow. There are to be separate registration rates for Members, Non-members, Student members, Student non-members, as well as a day-only rate. The Non-member fee should be greater than the Member fee by at least the cost of an individual DSH subscription. Participation at pre-conference workshops and tutorials requires payment of the entire conference registration fee and eventually an additional fee if the workshop organizer requires this. There are no “workshop-only” rates.

c. Sponsorship

i. Conference proposals should include a ‘Sponsorship Strategy’, for consideration by the CCC and if appropriate SC. This strategy should outline the approach that will be taken to sponsorship, including the nature of Gold, Silver, Bronze sponsorship levels and the values of the conference. If specific companies are expected to be contacted, a list should be provided. Significant deviations from the strategic direction outlined in the proposal must be discussed with the Chair of the CCC early in the conference development process.
ii. A presentation by a sponsor cannot happen at the opening or closing ceremonies; such a talk could possibly happen at a dinner or an award ceremony that the sponsor has supported, after approval by the PC and the CCC.
iii. Possible Gold, Silver, Bronze levels might include: Gold: $XXX + primary logo position on website and all conference marketing material. Silver: $XXX + secondary logo position on website and all conference marketing material. Bronze: $XXX + logo position on selected web pages and marketing material.
iv. Other possible Gold, Silver, Bronze components might include:
--logo on the web site
--logo on the program
--logo on the conference bag
--flyer/brochure in the conference bag
--waving to the registration fee for one or more representatives
--acknowledgement of sponsorship could be done in the footer of pre-conference public emails (e.g. in the reminders to register, a line like "ADHO gratefully acknowledges generous sponsorship from XX in support of the conference")
--a sponsor's booth in a specific place devoted to a diverse range of booths

d. Recognition

The LO(s) and PC will recognize ADHO as the primary organizer of the Digital Humanities conference in the conference’s publicity and programming materials following these guidelines:
i. Use of ADHO’s official logo (downloadable here) on the conference website, program, bag, flyer/brochure, and any other marketing materials generated for the conference. Use of the logo must meet the following requirements:
○ The logo should not be altered in any way except to adjust the proportionate size of the logo to fit the material to which it is applied.
○ When sponsors’ logos are also included in the same materials, ADHO’s logo should not be smaller than the sponsors’ logos and should appear on its own line above all other sponsors’ logos or in another most prominent position.
ii. Acknowledgement of ADHO in the footer of pre-conference public emails, e.g. “The Digital Humanities [Year] conference is organized by the Alliance of Digital Humanities Organizations.” This line should precede any acknowledgement(s) of sponsorship.
iii. Use of a base URL for the conference website showing the conference’s link to ADHO, preferably on the model "" (YYYY=year). ADHO will provide the LO(s) with access to this URL.
iv. Use of ADHO’s slide template (still in development) during opening and closing ceremonies.
v. Inclusion of ADHO’s brochure (still in development) in the conference bag. The LO(s) will be responsible for any printing costs incurred.

e. Conference length

The conference proper runs for three and a half days. On the two and a half days before the conference there will be meetings of the ADHO SC and of the Executive Committees of ACH, EADH and centerNet. Workshops and tutorials are usually organized a day and half before the conference, and the Program Committee (PC) approves proposals for these. For the general schedule, see the Appendices.

f. Conftool

Conftool: ADHO provides an online conference facility for delegate registration and the submission of papers and abstracts, called Conftool. The Program Committee will use this facility for the submission and refereeing of abstracts, and the LO(s) can use it for registration and space-planning. The LO(s) will have administrative rights within Conftool, for the calendar year in which the conference occurs. It is the responsibility of the CCC to ensure that the Conftool software is up to date and properly licensed, that relevant information has been migrated forward from previous years, and that Conftool has been configured to reflect the identity of the LO(s). It is the responsibility of the LO(s) to ensure that content pertaining to registration and meeting space is accurate and up-to-date. ADHO has developed software for converting abstracts into TEI, the ConValidator, and the LO(s), whose responsibility it is to produce the abstracts in TEI format, should normally plan to use ConValidator. ConValidator is maintained by the ISC in consultation with CCC. A a report about its background is available on request from either of these committees.

Conference Code of Conduct

Local Organizers are charged with making the long version of the Conference Code of Conduct available to attendees and easily findable. Where appropriate, the short version can be publicized with a direct link to the longer version: Local Organizers are expected to discuss the code of conduct and local support for conference-goers with their staff and assistants, and to publicize clear and helpful information for attendees. They may therefore wish to seek advice and examples from past LO(s) or DH conference websites.


Model Call for Papers

Digital Humanities 20XX: TITLE – Call for Papers
Alliance of Digital Humanities Organizations
Hosted by XX
Contact email: YYY
Paper/Poster/Panel deadline: 11:59pm GMT on November 1st 20XX
Workshop endorsed by a SIG: 11:59pm GMT on January XX 20XX
Workshop/Tutorial proposal deadline: 11:59pm GMT on February XX 20XX

I. General

The Alliance of Digital Humanities Organizations (ADHO) invites submission of abstracts for its annual conference, on any aspect of digital humanities. This includes, but is not limited to:

  • humanities research enabled through digital media, data mining, software studies, or information design and modeling;
  • social, institutional, global, multilingual, and multicultural aspects of digital humanities;
    • computer applications in literary, linguistic, cultural, and historical studies, including electronic literature, public humanities, and interdisciplinary aspects of modern scholarship;
    • quantitative stylistics and philology, including big data / textmining studies;digital arts, architecture, music, film, theatre, new media, digital games, and related areas;
    • emerging technologies such as 3D printing, single-board computers, wearable devices, applied to humanities research;
    • creation and curation of humanities digital resources; and
    • digital humanities in pedagogy and academic curricula.

For the 20XX conference, contributions that address social, institutional, global, multilingual, and multicultural aspects of digital humanities are welcome; but also contributions that address quantitative and statistics methods applied to texts and submissions on interdisciplinary work and new developments in all field of digital humanities.


Presentations may include:    

  • posters (abstract maximum 750 words);
  • short papers (abstract maximum 1500 words);
  • long papers (abstract maximum 1500 words);
  • multiple paper sessions, including panels (regular abstracts + approximately 500-word overview); and
  • pre-conference workshops and tutorials (proposal maximum 1500 words

The deadline for submitting poster, short paper, long paper, and multiple paper session proposals to the international Program Committee is midnight GMT, 1 November, 20XX.  Presenters will be notified of acceptance by XX February, 20XX.

Workshop proposals are due by midnight GMT, XX February, 20XX, with notice of acceptance by XX March, 20XX.

Workshops endorsed by a SIG can be proposed by midnight GMT, XX January, 20XX, with notice of acceptance by XX of January, 20XX.

Workshop proposals are due by midnight GMT, XX February, 20XX, with notice of acceptance by XX March, 20XX.


Authors cannot be involved in more than 4 submissions. They cannot apply as more than once as main author.


A link to the online abstract submission system will be available on the conference website: Please check the website for updates. Previous Digital Humanities conference participants and reviewers should use their existing accounts rather than setting up new ones. If you have forgotten your user name or password, please contact Program Committee Chair, YYY, <email>.

To facilitate the production of the conference proceedings, authors of accepted papers will be asked to submit final approved versions of their abstracts via the ConValidator.

II. Types of Proposals

Proposals may be of five types: (1) poster presentations; (2) short paper presentations; (3) long papers; (4) three-paper or full-panel sessions; and (5) proposals for pre-conference workshops and tutorials. Based on peer review and its mandate to create a balanced and varied program, the Program Committee may offer acceptance in a different category from the one initially proposed, and will not normally accept multiple submissions from the same author or group of authors. Papers and posters may be given in English, French, German, Italian or Spanish.

  1. Poster Presentations: Poster proposals (500 to 750 words) may describe work on any relevant topic or offer project and software demonstrations. Posters and demonstrations are intended to be interactive, with the opportunity to exchange ideas one-on-one with attendees. In addition to a dedicated session, when presenters will explain their work and answer questions, posters will be on display at various times during the conference.
  2. Short Papers: Short paper proposals (750 to 1500 words) are appropriate for reporting on experiments or work in progress, or for describing newly conceived tools or software in early stages of development. This category of presentation allows for up to five short papers in a single session, with the length held to a strict 10 minutes each in order to allow time for questions.
  3. Long Papers: Proposals for long papers (750 to 1500 words) are appropriate for: substantial, completed, and previously unpublished research; reports on the development of significant new methodologies or digital resources; and/or rigorous theoretical, speculative, or critical discussions. Individual papers will be allocated 20 minutes for presentation and 10 minutes for questions. Proposals relating to the development of new computing methodologies or digital resources should indicate how the methods are applied to research and/or teaching in the humanities, what their impact has been in formulating and addressing research questions, and should include critical assessment of their application in the humanities. Papers that concentrate on a particular tool or digital resource should cite traditional as well as computer-based approaches to the problem and should include critical assessments of the computing methodologies used. All proposals should include relevant citations to sources in the literature.
  4. Multiple Paper Sessions: These consist of one 90-minute panel of four to six speakers, or three long papers on a single theme. Panel organizers should submit an abstract of 750 to 1500 words describing the panel topic, how it will be organized, the names of all the speakers, and an indication that each speaker is willing to participate in the session. Paper session organizers should submit a statement of approximately 500 words describing the session topic, include abstracts of 750 to 1500 words for each paper, and indicate that each author is willing to participate in the session. Papers that are submitted as part of a special session may not be submitted individually for consideration in another category.
  5. Pre-Conference Workshops and Tutorials: Participants in pre-conference workshops and tutorials will be expected to register for the full conference as well as pay a small additional fee. Tutorials are normally intensive introductions to specific techniques, software packages or theoretical approaches with a small number of instructors.  Workshops proposals may take many forms including proposals with a full slate of speakers and presentations, but also proposals to issue an independent call for papers from which submissions will be chose.Proposals should provide the following information:
    • title and brief description of the content or topic and its relevance to the digital humanities community (not more than 1500 words);

    • full contact information for all tutorial instructors or workshop leaders, including a one-paragraph statement summarizing their research interests and areas of expertise;

    • description of target audience and expected number of participants (based, if possible, on past experience); and

    • any special requirements for technical support.

    Additionally, tutorial proposals should include:

    • a brief outline showing that the core content can be covered in a half day (approximately 3 hours, plus breaks). In exceptional cases, full-day tutorials may be supported.

    And workshop proposals must include:

    • intended length and format of the workshop (minimum half-day; maximum one and a half days);

    • proposed budget (as digital humanities workshops are expected to be self-financing); and

    • if the workshop is to have its own call for participation, a deadline and date for notification of acceptances, and a list of individuals who have agreed to be part of the workshop’s Program Committee.

Workshops endorsed by a SIG:

Workshops endorsed by a SIG and focused on a topic related to the concerned SIG can be proposed. They are required to follow the same instructions as than the other workshops, but should also note that:

  • they have to be endorsed in writing by a SIG

  • the deadline of acceptation is earlier

III. Format of the Proposals

DH20XX will take place in CITY, COUNTRY; text written by le LO(s) with PC agreement.

IV. Bursaries for Early-Career and Emerging Scholars

The Alliance of Digital Humanities Organizations will offer a limited number of bursaries for early-career scholars presenting at the conference. Application guidelines will appear on the ADHO website later this year:


V. International Program Committee

Chair: XXX

Vice-Chair: XXX


List of the PC voting members according to the Protocol definition 2.7


Outgoing Chair: XXX


Timeline for Conference Organization

About three years in advance, the ADHO Conference Coordinating Committee (CCC) should solicit bids for hosting, in a public RFP, and the CCC should consult with bidders to make sure they understand the terms and requirements of conference hosting.


At the conference three years ahead, prospective conference hosts should present proposals to the ADHO Steering Committee. So, for example, for the conference in 2019, the invitation to bid would be issued three months before the 2016 conference.

Normally the future host will be selected at this time, by the ADHO Steering Committee.


At this same time, Program Committee (PC) members for the conference two years out must be named by the constituent organizations, and a Program Chair selected by the ADHO Steering Committee. See item 2.7 of the Conference Protocol for the complete PC list.


A little more than a year ahead of the conference being planned, the PC should begin working up a call for papers and the Program Chair should organize a face-to-face meeting at the conference one year ahead.


At that same conference, the Local Organizer(s) of the conference being planned should distribute information about that event, including planned dates, estimated costs, social program, housing options, etc. Future local organizers should also at this point have space reserved for meetings and events in the conference being planned.


Program Chairs should issue the first call for papers at the conference a year ahead, with a submission deadline at least nine months in advance of the conference, and a deadline for acceptances at least four months in advance of the conference. The online paper-reviewing mechanisms should be in place when the call for papers is issued, and the database of potential reviewers should be updated by the CCC Chair.


The Chair of the ADHO Conference Coordinating Committee and the Program Chair should visit the future conference site and meet with the local organizer(s) approximately six months in advance of the conference, to review local arrangements, meetings space, lodging, etc. At this point, the conference web site should be operational, registration costs should be set, online registration mechanisms should be ready to go, and conference bags should be on order.


Three months in advance of the conference--at the same time that paper and poster acceptances are sent out--online registration should open. At this point, travel and lodging information should be available on the conference web site, and excursions should be set and priced. Work now begins on producing the online academic program and the book of abstracts, with the online program finalized and published as soon as possible--not less than two months in advance of the conference.


One month in advance of the conference, the book of abstracts should be available online and materials for the conference packets should be collected. Student helpers should be identified and scheduled, and nametags should be produced. Registrations should be confirmed, and incomplete or unclear registrations should be reviewed. Late registration fees should take effect at this point.


Conference Schedule:

The ADHO SC will supply a draft timetable with required key events. The following are usual features of a ADHO conference: 

•  Day −2: 
ADHO Steering Committee meeting

•  Day −1: 
    Committee meetings of constituent organizations / Workshops or tutorials

•   Day 0:     First day of conference proper

                    Morning: ADHO Steering Committee re-convenes /Workshops or tutorials

                    Afternoon: Arrival and registration for participants/ Workshops or tutorials

                   Late afternoon: Opening plenary

 Early evening: Reception

•   Day 1: 
    Conference sessions

•   Day 2: 
    Conference sessions

•   Day 3: 
    Conference sessions, including closing session

•   Day 4 : 

Additional elements of the schedule are described in the Guidelines for Local Organizers, and include a banquet, Annual General Meetings of constituent organizations, and other events.

LO(s), PC chair, and the editor of Digital Scholarship in the Humanities should begin work at the conference to select papers that will be invited as contributions to the conference issue of DSH. This issue should appear in the year following the conference. See 3.e in the Protocol Conference for other details.


Conference evaluation

Conference evaluation: The LO(s) is encouraged to arrange a brief conference evaluation survey of participants, and to include results of that survey in his or her report to the CCC.

Post-conference report: The LO(s) is required to submit a minimal report to the ADHO CCC by the end of the calendar year in which the conference occurs. The report must include a brief overview of key conference features, the minimal financial statements (including registration numbers by category), and recommendations for the future.


Notes on papers and sessions

Plenaries and keynotes

It is important that the Program Committee communicate in advance with keynote speakers concerning the disciplinary focus and level of sophistication of the ADHO audience, particularly if the keynote speaker comes from outside the ADHO community. Information about the conference focus and theme should be made available to the keynote speaker well in advance of the conference. There may also be plenary sessions other than those involving a single keynote speaker (for example, a plenary panel). See Annex to the Conference Protocol, point 4 for all the details.

Poster sessions

Both in the call for papers, the review process, and in developing the program, the PC should do its best to ensure the equal standing and distinctive function of poster sessions and paper submissions. The PC should emphasize this if recommending that poster proposal be accepted as a paper and vice versa. Such a recommendation should make it clear that it is the nature of the proposal and not its quality that motivates the change.


Some possibilities for ensuring the distinctiveness and vibrancy of poster sessions include:

  • have the poster session as a plenary event rather than simply a space, and ensure that it is very close to the main conference area;

  • have two poster events, one of which is staged as an open microphone session or a series of short presentations (10 minutes, no questions), referring listeners to the subsequent poster session for further details and a chance to speak with the authors;

  • schedule the poster session in tandem with refreshments, perhaps sponsored by a vendor or affiliated organization.

Paper sessions

In organizing papers into sessions, the Program Committee should give some thought to the chemistry between papers as well as their topical similarity.




Additions to the conference format are encouraged (such as changes to the presentation format), but must be approved by the PC. Once agreement is reached, format changes need to be advertised via the call for papers.


Approved as a working docuument June 2005 by the ACH and ALLC executive committees. Updated with Conference Code of Conduct in January of 2014. Updated with the Conference Protocol in February of 2016.