• Panel (and workshop) topics span a great variety of issues.  Panels/workshops offer engaged forms of dialogue, debate and/or interaction between panelists/facilitators and audience and at times, have an activist, organizing or strategy making focus.
  • In designing your panel or workshop we ask you to try to ensure that panelists or workshop facilitators represent and engage diverse political standpoints on any particular topic, and that panelists represent a range of political and cultural identities (e.g., race, gender, age, and class diversity). 
  • If you have any problems submitting a panel please email or call (212) 817 2002/2003. Panel Submission Deadline: May 5th, 2017.» In order to accommodate as many panels, workshops, panelists and workshop facilitators as space will allow we limit local and regional panelists/facilitators to two panels/workshops. Requests for additional panel/workshop participation can be made by emailing and explaining your request. 
  • Panel and workshop submission is now open. The deadline for panel/workshop submission will be posted soon. We do however ask that you submit your proposals—even in a nascent form—as soon as you can, as the later the panel/workshop is submitted the harder it is to attend to all aspects of its administration.

Panel and workshop formats

We encourage a range of panel/workshop styles and panel chairing and workshop facilitation processes. These include:

  1. The traditional panel form: This form has a chair person who provides an introduction for the speakers and the topic; facilitates the audience question and answer session; and mediates any disputes or similar occurrences. At Left Forum the chair can also function as a speaker. Indicating who is chairing just makes sure that somebody is moderating the whole discussion. Depending on the number of panelists, panel presentations should be timed to allow about half of the session for audience participation, one session is usually 1 hour and 50 minutes so for four panelists each talk should be about 13-14 minutes. It would be the task of the chair to make sure that each speaker sticks to the ammount of time they have been given. The panel organizer should let all speakers know in advance how much time they have. A similar form can designate a person or two in a discussant or respondent role. In this case the panel presentations should be fewer or shorter and the respondent can develop a critique, and/or raise pertinent issues and questions.
  2. Roundtable or moderated dialogue format: this form can include short presentations by all panelists, 5 minutes for example, followed by questions that engage panelists and/or allow them to interact with each other, and/or panelists can ask each other questions; This is followed by audience participation.
  3. Workshops: this can vary from a format where a facilitator or group of facilitators involve all participants right away, e.g., through introductions and group dialogue focused on particular questions, strategies or issues. It can include sessions focused on dialogues about political practices, trainings, and question and answer sessions. As with all other forms workshop proposals need at least three people who commit to the workshop and who can and want facilitate the workshop.

Panel and workshop tracks

Panel/workshop tracks identify and pull together sets of panels and workshops that address major issues, themes, or areas of activism and dialogue from a variety of angles—from the local to the global, and the practical to the theoretical. Tracks enable panel/workshop organizers to deepen a particular issue or theme, and as well, to plan out a series of panels or workshops that "start and go somewhere" (e.g., with an introductory panel starting off the track and more detailed or involved panels/workshop following the introductory session, concluding with a wrap up session).

Panel and workshop size and facilitation

  • Every panel must have a chair person. if the session is facilitated through collective processes, facilitators can be listed under the Chair category. 
  • The chair person can also be a presenter
  • Minimum  number of participants per panel is three (including a chair person). For the panel format where each speaker presents for a certain lenght of time (as compared to some workshops formats) panels with more than five speakers often leave too little time for audience discussion and panel interaction.  We recommend that panels have no more than five speakers and that panel chairs provide up to half of the panel session time for audience discussion.
  • Every workshop must have a facilitator (use the "chair" field). if the session is facilitated through collective processes, facilitators can be listed under the Chair category.  
  • Minimum number of participants per workshop is three. We call all participants facilitators, wlthough not all of them have to play the role as facilitators, but should step in if the main facilitators drops or does not show up to the workshop itself etc.

Panel and workshop registration (all panelists must register for the conference)

  • In order to cover conference costs we require that panelists/workshop participants register for the conference. We ask panel/workshop organizers to make sure that all speakers on their panel (discussants, etc.) or all participants for their workshop are registered (click here to register now) . If you have scholarship requests, contact us at
  • We invite foreign participation but unfortunately cannot pay for travel costs for panelists/workshop participants or provide translators at this time.

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