WISERD is pleased to announce that the 7th WISERD Annual Conference will take place on Wednesday 13th July and Thursday 14th July 2016 at Swansea University, Bay Campus. Our Conference continues to grow each year and following on from the unbridled success of last year’s Conference in Cardiff, #WISERD2016 promises to provide colleagues from across the academic, policy, public, private, and third sectors with the opportunity to network and discuss cutting edge research.

Keynote Speakers 

We are delighted to be able to confirm that Ottón Solís, the founder, president and three times presidential candidate of the Citizens’ Action Party (Partido Accion Cindadana) in Costa Rica and Andrew Oswald, Professor of Economics at the University of Warwick, have agreed to deliver keynote addresses at the 2016 event. Other speakers include Mike Hout, Professor of Sociology at New York University and David Grusky, Professor of Sociology at Stanford University.

An Interdisciplinary Social Sciences Conference 

The WISERD Annual Conference is an Interdisciplinary Social Sciences Conference, brought together by a common interest in disciplinary and interdisciplinary approaches, within and across the various social sciences, and between the social, natural and applied sciences.

The Conference will include presentations on a range of critically important issues relating to academic, policy and practitioner communities in the UK and internationally. Proposals can address theoretical work, methodological developments and policy issues; as well as substantive research from a range of disciplines. 

WISERD is keen to promote inter-disciplinarity and facilitate involvement from non-academic stakeholders and so we particularly welcome proposals on the basis of multidisciplinary work and abstracts that reflect cross-sector working. 

We encourage all PhD students to participate and share in this enriching opportunity by submitting a full paper and/or taking part in some of the conference competitions.

Proposal Types and Alternative Presentation Formats 

This year we would like to invite proposals for paper presentations, workshops/interactive sessions, posters/exhibits, or colloquia in any discipline that engages with Social Sciences. 

The WISERD Annual Conference Committee would like to suggest the following innovative presentation formats because they create opportunities for increased discussion, exploration and shared learning.

Single Paper Presentation

A single paper presentation is best suited for reports on completed or near completion research. Presentations should summarise the research, outlining the introduction, context, methodology and findings. The formal presentation should be limited to a maximum of 20 minutes. Presentations are grouped according to topic or perspective into themed 90 minute sessions, with time provided after all of the presentations for Q&A and group discussion. Presenters are welcome to include visual aids (hand-outs, slides, or digital displays) to assist in delivery of their presentation. Multiple-authored presentations are welcomed. 


A set of 3 to 4 papers or a panel discussion on a specific topic. Each papers requires an abstract and oral presentation of 25 – 30 minutes including questions. A symposium provides an opportunity to examine specific issues or topics from a variety of perspectives, maybe presenting alternative solutions, interpretations, or contrasting points of view on the topic. A symposium may use a panel discussion format on a specific topic. It may be an interactive session where a large portion of the time is devoted to discussion among the presenters and discussants, and/or questions and discussion among all those present. 


Colloquium are scheduled for 90 minutes and involve three to four authors proposing a set of papers based on a shared theme or topic. The papers may present complementary aspects of a specific body of work, or contrasting perspectives on a specified topic. There must be at least three registered participants (for example, a Chair and three presenters – one of whom can also act as Chair). The presenters should conceive and design the session to allow time for individual presentations of 15-20 minutes each; and allow at least 10 minutes of audience discussion or question-and-answer. All participants must be listed on the proposal submission form. 


A workshop session is best suited for teaching or demonstrating particular procedures, skills, or techniques. Workshop sessions can be structured around a traditional workshop, a demonstration, a performance, an exhibition, a staged conversation or an extended dialogue with the audience. Workshop sessions are scheduled for either 45 or 90 minutes and should be structured to include introductory information, with ample time allocated for audience interaction, participation, and involvement. 

Panel Discussion

Panel sessions are best suited to discussion and debate of key academic, policy and practice issues. Examples could include a debate on policy responses to inequality in the workplace, or a discussion of effective methods for stakeholder engagement. Panels can be made up of a mixture of academic, policy and practitioner participants or can include participants from a single sector. Panel sessions are scheduled for either 45 or 90 minutes and should be structured to include introductory information, with ample time for discussion and debate. 

Poster or Exhibition Piece

This format is ideal for presenting a range of research and engagement activities, particularly those that lend themselves to visual displays and representations. In these sessions (generally about 45 minutes), a number of authors have the opportunity to display or exhibit their work and engage in informal discussion about their work with other delegates throughout the session. 

Displays may be posters, digital/computer displays, artwork, or other visual media. Each display should include a brief abstract of the purpose and procedures of the work; hand-outs or copies of written material may also be available. Space for the poster or exhibit will be provided by the Conference, however all materials must be organized by the presenter, including posters, displays, handouts or other appropriate materials. Please note that we cannot guarantee a dedicated power source for each presenter. Presenters must be available at their poster to answer questions or conduct a conversation about their poster at a designated time during the conference. Poster presentation guidelines are available here.

Posters to be submitted to the WISERD Hub Office by 1st July 2016.

Pecha Kucha

Pecha Kucha is a presentation style in which 20 slides are shown for 20 seconds each (6 minutes and 40 seconds in total). This format keeps presentations concise and fast-paced. This style of session would provide a short presentation followed by a lengthy discussion with the delegates. Click here to find out more about Pecha Kucha.

Submission Instructions 

Submissions must be made online by clicking here: 

Please note: 

  • Each abstract proposal or idea should be submitted separately.
  • Proposals may be submitted in English or Welsh.
  • The deadline for submission of abstracts is Friday 29th January 2015
  • All submissions will be reviewed by the WISERD Reviewing Committee. Their role is to ensure the development of a balanced programme of sessions which is based on relevance, demand, professional development need and timing. It may not be possible to include all proposals and ideas, but we thank everyone in advance for their efforts and interest in supporting the 2016 WISERD Conference.
  • Notifications of acceptance will be issued in February 2016 and once the programme has been finalised, contributors will be given confirmation of the date and time of their session. Successful speakers will be asked to submit their detailed session materials during the spring.
  • There is a possibility that successful speakers may be ask to present in a different format.
  • If you are accepted as a speaker you will need to register as a delegate in the normal way and to book during the early bird booking period. 


In order to speak at this event you will also need to register as a delegate in the normal way and to book during the early bird booking period. Booking for the conference will open on Tuesday 1st March 2016, with early bird rates applying until the end of May 2016.

If you would like to engage with potential collaborators or have any questions about session design, the Conference programme or general session management please contact Sarah Creed by email ( or telephone (02920 870983).