Rules and Guidelines for Chairmen of Scientific Committees of IUTAM Symposia


The aim of symposia sponsored by IUTAM is to assemble a group of active scientists within a well-defined field for the development of science within that field. In order to achieve an effective communication within this group, it is necessary to limit the number of active participants sufficiently. Since all IUTAM Symposia are reserved for invited participants, a limitation can readily be achieved.

Decisions regarding sponsorship of IUTAM Symposia are taken by the General Assembly of IUTAM; decisions regarding date and venue (host institution) are taken by the Bureau of IUTAM which also appoints the Scientific Committee and its Chairperson.

The Chairperson of the Scientific Committee will carry the main responsibility for organizing and running the Symposium.

The Chairperson is kindly asked to contact at his/her earliest convenience the members of the Scientific Committee, as decided by the Bureau, inviting them to serve with him/her. The Chairperson is asked to inform the Secretary-General if anyone of them is unable to accept the invitation.

Date and host institution for the Symposium should be proposed to the Secretary-General as soon as possible. They are subject to approval by the Bureau to avoid possible clashes of dates of different Symposia.

Any formal questions regarding the rules and guidelines for the Symposium should be addressed to the IUTAM representative in the Scientific Committee or to the IUTAM Secretary-General.

Below are a few Rules that have to be followed and some Guidelines.


  1. During the preparation of the Symposium the Chairperson is requested to keep the Secretary-General informed about all important steps of the development.
  2. It is the duty of the Chairperson to inform the members of the Scientific Committee about all decisions taken by the General Assembly and the Bureau concerning the Symposium. In particular the IUTAM representative in the Scientific Committee (usually a member of the IUTAM Bureau) should be contacted as early as possible.
  3. Confirmation of the host institution for the Symposium and a proposal for the precise date of the Symposium should be sent to the IUTAM Secretary-General as soon as possible and with the full support and knowledge of the Scientific Committee. The proposals are subject to approval by the Bureau.
  4. In accordance with the resolutions adopted by the International Council of Science, (abbreviated ICSU; IUTAM is a member of ICSU), the selection of participants must be made on the basis of scientific merit only and the Chairperson shall take all measures within his/her powers to ensure that there is no discrimination based on sex, nationality, race, religion or political philosophy.
  5. Members of the General Assembly of IUTAM have the right to participate in any scientific meeting sponsored by IUTAM.
  6. The registration fee for the Symposium must not exceed 500 US Dollars.
  7. IUTAM may allocate a grant up to 5,000 US Dollars to each IUTAM Symposium. In the event that an IUTAM grant is allocated, the Treasurer of IUTAM should be advised, two to three months before the Symposium takes place, to whom and into which bank account the IUTAM grant is to be paid.
  8. The IUTAM grant allocated for the Symposium can be used freely toward the organization of the Symposium. Appropriate receipts need to be submitted to the Treasurer of IUTAM within two months after the Symposium. If the grant has not been fully used the remaining part should be returned together with the receipts.
  9. Shortly after the Symposium the Chairperson should send to the Secretary-General a written report  with the following entries:
    • Scientific Committee
    • Short summary of scientific progress achieved
    • Countries represented and number of participants
    • Publication of Proceedings of the Symposium (if applicable)
    • Financial support
    • Scientific program


  1. As soon as possible, the Scientific Committee should define the scope of the Symposium within the guidelines given by the title and the general outline approved by the General Assembly.
  2. The main responsibility of the Scientific Committee is the selection of invited participants. It is important to locate the best and most active scientists in the field, and to encourage them to present their best research at the Symposium. Special effort should be made to identify and invite promising young researchers. This may be done on the basis of personal knowledge and recommendations, on the basis of recent publications and/or with the help of papers or abstracts of papers sent to the Scientific Committee upon a call for papers. The number of invited participants is the choice of the Scientific Committee. To achieve the aims mentioned in the introduction, it is however recommended to keep this number below 100. The number of oral presentations (lectures) should be kept below 25 for a three day symposium or 40 for a five day symposium. Some sessions may be devoted to visual presentations (poster presentation sessions). In all cases parallel sessions must be avoided. The Chairperson may feel free to include a local group of young scientists and students that are not necessarily active in the particular field of the Symposium.
  3. The Chairperson is encouraged to develop a symposium website and to send the link to the Secretary-General for reference on the IUTAM webpage.
  4. To improve communication, name tags (with generous printing) and a list of participants should be distributed to all participants.
  5. It is the policy of IUTAM not to enforce the use of any one language for the presentation of papers. You may feel free however to make a recommendation.
  6. The organizers alone decide whether or not to publish Proceedings. If they decide to publish Proceedings, they must follow the rules described in Items 7 and 8 below in order to ensure that the Proceedings are of high quality.
  7. The Proceedings should not be published in advance of the Symposium. Presentation and discussion of a paper at the Symposium is a necessary condition for its consideration for publication in the Proceedings.
  8. Acceptable forms for Proceedings are special issues of high-quality journals or other forms previously approved by the Bureau of IUTAM. Proceedings must be published under the title “IUTAM Symposium on …” and it is advisable to plan the publication at an early date. The IUTAM Grant (see Item 8 of the Rules) can be used for the publication costs associated with Proceedings.
    • All papers included in the Proceedings of the Symposium are subject to review, with the aim of achieving a standard of the Proceedings that is comparable to the standard of high-quality refereed journals in the field.
    • The Chairperson should arrange that a copy be sent to the IUTAM Secretariat.