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Call For Presenters

Call for Presenters

PLEASE NOTE: Early arrival on Saturday, October 21st is unavailable due to a Penn State football game.

Deadline to Submit:

March 10, 2017 at 11:59 PM

Conference Date and Location:

October 22 – 24, 2017
The Penn Stater Hotel and Conference Center
215 Innovation Blvd, State College PA 16803


Proposers are encouraged to submit traditional and non-traditional sessions, plus mobile workshops. Traditional sessions typically involve presentations and follow-up Q&A with an expert person or small panel. Non-traditional sessions can include problem-solving roundtables, “fast-fun-fervent” presentations, and peer-group sessions. (See more below on non-traditional sessions.)

All sessions and presentations should emphasize useful takeaways for participants. Examples include breakthrough information that makes a convincing case for an innovative idea; usable tools and methods with an understanding of how and when to use them; and key resources for deeper examination of an idea or tool. Proposals should consider ways for sessions to be engaging, interactive, and hands-on, and consider real world scenarios to walk participants through the application of an idea or tool. In the proposal, please note how you will structure the session to address the above areas of emphasis.

Non-Traditional Sessions
Proposers are invited to submit three types of non-traditional sessions:

  • Problem-solving roundtables – These sessions may be proposed by one or a team of two persons with expertise in a particular planning problem or issue. Session leader(s) will introduce the problem, provide brief background on the problem and a real-world example of the problem or issue, then facilitate interaction with participants to discuss solutions and best practices. There should be time for participants to pose their own experience with the problem for response by the experts and discussion by the group.
  • “Fast-fun-fervent” presentations – Individuals may propose a presentation including 20 slides, 20 seconds each slide (about 7 minutes). Seven such presentations will be chosen for one session at the conference. Subjects can be any planning topic (including places and persons) and should provide a presenter’s unique perspective and opinion. Presentations should be insightful, not frivolous, and also be passionate, witty, and personal.
  • Peer-group sessions – Teams of two or three persons may propose sessions for participants of a particular peer group by age, gender, or other common characteristics. Examples could be “Boomer” planners, private consultants, or rural PA planners. Session leaders will propose topics of unique interest to the peer group, facilitate discussion around those topics, plus facilitate discussion of other topics that may arise from the group.

Proposers of non-traditional sessions are encouraged to be creative. The Conference Planning Committee will be open to ideas from proposers in deciding the final structure and format of non-traditional sessions.

Theme, Tracks & Topics:
The theme for the conference is Experience, Adapt, Innovate!

Choose a track that fits your session:

Healthy Places = Healthy People: Demographics | Food Systems | Health | Housing Policy | Environment | Mixed Land Use | Parks & Recreation | Residential Land Use | Rural | Social Justice & Equity | Sustainability | Transportation | Urban Design | Zoning & Ordinances

Nuts and Bolts: Career Development | Demographics | Ethics | Finance | Government | Law | Partnerships & Agreements | Planning History & Theory | Planning Methods & Tools | Public Participation | Rural | Social Justice & Equity | Urban Design | Zoning & Ordinances

Connectivity: Commercial Land Use | Energy | Industrial Land Use | Infrastructure | Institutional Land Use | Mixed Land Use | Partnerships & Agreements | Public Participation | Public Services Delivery | Residential Land Use | Rural | Transportation | Urban Design | Zoning & Ordinances

Resiliency: Commercial Land Use | Community Revitalization | Economic Development | Food Systems | Hazards | Historic Preservation | Institutional Land Use | Natural Resources & Environment | Rural | Social Justice & Equity | Sustainability | Urban Deisgn

Topic examples include, but not limited to:

  • Transportation, including Act 89, public-private partnerships, bike travel and walkability, and the relationship of various modes of travel to community development and revitalization.
  • Community development, including placemaking, neighborhood revitalization, dealing with blight, maintaining affordable housing, and historic preservation.
  • Changing demographics and how they will affect future societal needs, land uses, development markets, and the broader community and economy.
  • Core MPC tools – comprehensive plans, plus zoning, subdivision, and official map ordinances – including ways they can be innovated to better address current thinking and changing times.
  • Current environmental and conservation issues, including integrated water resources planning, flood insurance program changes, sustainability, resilience, and a variety of “green” practices.
  • Economic development, including promoting entrepreneurship and neighborhoods as economic drivers in the connected age.
  • Local governance, including dealing with municipal fiscal distress, planning education, leadership development, and public involvement including the increasing use of online civic platforms.
  • Community health, including obesity, access to healthy food, and relationship to design of communities and developments.
  • Planning operations, including organizational strategic planning and development, technology tools, meeting facilitation, project management, and conflict management.

If you have any questions about the submission form or the Conference, please contact Kim Gusic at the PA Chapter office 717-671-4510 or info@planning.org.

Call for Presentation Questions:
To assist you in preparing your session proposal, the questions asked in the online submission form are listed below. Questions marked with an asterisk “*” are mandatory.

After submitting your proposal online, you will receive an automatically generated email recapping your submittal.

Please note the committee’s decisions are made based on the strength and clarity of the session title, session summary and learning objectives. Please pay careful attention to these items when completing your proposal.

* Speaker Policies: I have read and agree to the following speaker policies. As the Lead Presenter for this session I verify that I will share this information with any additional presenters. If you do not agree, your session will not be considered for presentation. The PA Chapter of APA maintains the following policies that are consistent with APA’s speaker policies:

  • All speakers MUST register for the conference. This applies whether you will attend the event for only your session, a single day, or the full event.
    • All speakers who will attend sessions and conference events MUST pay regular registration fees. As a courtesy, we extend the early bird registration fee to all presenters regardless of when you register for the event.
    • Speakers who will attend the conference to ONLY present their session are not required to pay registration fees (but still MUST register for the conference).
  • Speakers are responsible for their own hotel accommodations and travel.
  • Sessions are limited to no more than a total of three (3) presenters.
  • An audio-visual request form will be sent to the Lead Presenter for each session. Lead Presenters are responsible for coordinating the audio-visual needs for their sessions. The conference provides the following equipment as needed: microphones, LCD (data) projectors, screens, and flipcharts.
  • Speakers MUST provide their own laptop computers.

*Lead Presenter Contact Information: The Lead Presenter is responsible for coordinating the session with additional presenters (if any). Include professional designations such as AICP, FAICP, PhD, PP, etc.

* Lead Presenter Biography: Please include a narrative biography, of no more than 300 words, that includes the following: current position, professional credentials, education and 2-3 sentences describing your expertise in the subject matter. DO NOT submit resumes or bulleted lists.

* Proposed Session or Presentation Title (Please note the session title is a critical element in the committee’s review of this proposal.)

* Primary Target Audience (choose all that are applicable – Professional Planner, Planning Official/Commissioner, New Planner, Student or Other)

* Please classify your session (choose one): Beginner, Intermediate, Advanced

* Which description most closely follows how you envision the session (choose one): Overview/analysis of program/policy/topic, Review of a best practice/real application of a program/policy/tool, etc., Interactive dialogue to explore a concept/topic, Other.

*Indicate the type of session (choose one): Traditional, Problem-solving roundtable, Fast-fun-fervent, Peer group, Mobile workshop

* Session Length: The committee is planning for 1.25 – 1.5 hour sessions but may choose to modify session length as the program is developed. Please confirm your session content is appropriate for a: 1.25 – 1.5 hour time slot, two back-to-back sessions for in-depth training, a mobile workshop /walking tour, or is a fast-fun-fervent presentation.

* Brief Description of the Session or Presentation: Provide a brief (50-100 words) description of the proposed session, and include how the session will enable others to replicate results and engage attendees. Please note the session summary is a critical element in the committee’s review of this proposal. Session summaries may be edited by the Conference Committee for publication in the conference program.

* Learning Objectives: Please provide up to 3 objectives that attendees will be able to achieve by the conclusion of the session.

*How Does the Session Meet the APA CM Criteria? (50 – 100 words) Is this session appropriate for Certification Maintenance Credits (refer to criteria below)? Sessions do not need to be appropriate for Certificate Maintenance for inclusion at the conference. If you are submitting a non-traditional session such as “fast, fun, fervent”, simply type N/A.

Your session may be submitted for CM. No material changes in content should occur after your session is accepted for presentation. Changing speakers requires us to re-submit the entire CM application to APA. Speakers should only be replaced in very compelling circumstances. The content of CM activities must be designed to meet a specific planning-related training objective. The content of CM activities must be designed to teach subject matter in appropriate depth and scope for the level of the typical AICP member, a practicing planner with at least two years of professional experience.

  • The content of CM activities must be non-promotional in nature. Program content must be unbiased. An organization’s services or products may be discussed prior to or after the completion of the CM credit portion of the activity.
  • The content of CM activities must address demonstrated educational needs of AICP members.
  • The content of CM activities must communicate a clearly identified educational purpose or objective.
  • In order for CM activities to fulfill the ethics requirement, providers must demonstrate that the content of the activity is related to the AICP Code of Ethics and Professional Conduct.
  • In order for CM activities to fulfill the law requirement, providers must demonstrate that the content of the activity is related to planning law. Such activities may include, but are not limited to, topics such as environmental law, land use law, redevelopment law, administrative law, and housing law.

Has this session been presented before?

Restrictions on Session Date & Time (optional)

If you cannot present on a particular day or time slot (morning/afternoon), please tell us

Presenter #2 Information Include professional designations such as AICP, FAICP, PhD, PP, etc.

Presenter #2 Biography

Presenter #3 Information Include professional designations such as AICP, FAICP, PhD, PP, etc.

Presenter #3 Biography

Proposal Submission