By Shannon Weiman
2022 marked an exciting return to in-person meetings after a two year hiatus due to COVID-19. Although we had to delay the beginning of the season due to the Omicron wave in January and February, audiences enthusiastically returned to in-person meetings in March. Audiences were THRILLED to reconvene in person, which made all the waiting and efforts to reschedule meetings all the more worth it.
1st in-person Keystone Conf since 2/20 is over! Amazing talks & posters, one after the other. Can’t express enough how wonderful it was to interact in person. Thanks to my co-organizers and all who participated— you rock! @MartinGuilliams @VeniPap #KSMyeloid22 #KSINNATEIMMUNE22 pic.twitter.com/Gjz8AtOHqm— Claudia Jakubzick (@claudjak) March 10, 2022
Here we go! We start with the Keynote talk of the one and only @KathyDMcCoy #KSMyeloid22. Room is full! What a superb start of this meeting. Finally: the first Keystone in 2 years. Big thanks to all participants 🙏🏼. So happy to be here 😀🇨🇦🏔. @VeniPap @claudjak pic.twitter.com/C0Ct1AHcXJ— Martin Guilliams (@MartinGuilliams) March 7, 2022
What a week! 🙏 @KeystoneSymp & organizers for amazing #KSMyeloid22 in beautiful #Banff. Learned so much cool science, caught up with friends across the pond and made some new ones! Grateful for the opportunity to share my work on stage and receive helpful feedback 🙏 pic.twitter.com/AthWiYJmL2— Pailin Chiaranunt (@PhagocyticPai) March 11, 2022
In addition, we launched our new hybrid meeting format, in an effort to democratize access to emerging science. Inspired by lessons learned from virtual meetings held during the pandemic, hybrid Livestream and On Demand options provided more diverse audiences with the opportunity to participate and engage with the scientific community. These include more global audiences, as well as those unable to travel in-person due to financial limitations, family obligations or other conflicts. (Read more about hybrid meetings- HERE). Altogether this year we provided On Demand access for nearly all of our 50 in-person meetings, and Livestream access for 32 meetings.
Globally, we held meetings in the US, Canada, Germany, Italy, Belgium and even South Korea, addressing topics ranging from basic scientific discovery to global health. A particular highlight was our "COVID & Beyond: Novel Approaches to Global Infectious Diseases" meeting, held in conjunction with the Gates Grand Challenges conference in Brussels, Belgium. The conference brought together experts in infectious disease, public health and leaders from around the world to discuss lessons learned from COVID-19 with regards to:
- accelerating science with worldwide networks of collaboration and innovation;
- fruitful exploitation of platform technologies;
- need for equitably distributed and nurtured capacity;
- novel approaches to prophylaxis, therapy and control of infectious diseases.
The content is now available On Demand until the end of January, HERE.
This year we were able to provide financial aid to nearly 500 in-person attendees to attend Keystone Symposia conferences and present their work; a particularly valuable experience for those who had been deprived of this opportunity by the COVID-19 pandemic. Altogether, we provided 442 scholarships to students and post-doctoral fellows, 9 early-career investigators from under-represented backgrounds (ECITAs awards), and 24 scientists from low- and middle- income countries (Global Health Travel Awards), to attend conferences for essential career building and networking experiences. Find out more about financial aid programs and opportunities here.
Super grateful to have been given the opportunity to present some of my work at @KeystoneSymp #KSHeartFail22 in beautiful Colorado! Happy I got the chance to meet some of the titans in the field. Thank you @saptarsi_haldar and @dkassjhu for organizing an amazing conference! pic.twitter.com/bvqke9cVuT— Ashley François (@ashleyfrancois0) October 3, 2022
In addition, we provided free virtual access to global audiences who could not travel to conferences, due to costs and/or pandemic restrictions. In total, we provided free Livestream access to 765 viewers and On Demand access to 66 viewers from low- and middle- income countries (LMICs). These efforts, supported by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, democratize access to the emerging research discoveries, research tools and clinical advances.
By Debbie Johnson