Frequently Asked Questions

Pre-recorded talks give everyone the opportunity to put their best foot forward. Your presentation time won’t be eaten up by technical hitches with screen sharing or audio settings or unreliable internet. And your presentation won’t run late or be cut off because other presenters before you have had technical hitches. Reducing the negative impacts of technical hitches is especially important at a conference like the ESA meeting that has hundreds of presentations across concurrent sessions and multiple days.

There will still be live QnA interaction for all talks, but having your presentation pre-recorded means the conference will run more smoothly for both presenters and attendees.

Pre-recording also means you can rehearse and record as many versions of your presentation as you like until you get it just right!

There will be live interaction between the presenters and audience at all times in all sessions through the chat function. Because the presentations are pre-recorded, presenters will be able to receive and respond to questions in the chat box while their presentation plays.

There will also be a live video QnA session at the end of each session where all the presenters from that session will interact with each other and respond to audience questions.

The online conference hub is the place for conference attendees to interact with each using the chat board. You can also search the attendees list to find people you’d like to meet and create connections with.

Like all ESA conferences, you can interact on Twitter using the hashtag #ESAus20. We’ll be following #ecologicalfashion at the conference as we do every year.

This year’s Conference Social Committee have also planned a number of virtual networking activities like the Mixers and a Trivia night - click here for more details.

The Barbara Rice Memorial Poster session is also a good opportunity to meet poster presenters and talk about their work with them.

The deadline for all presenters to submit their video talks or posters is 15 November through the Dropbox link that was sent to all presenters (contact to have the link re-sent if needed). This submission deadline will give the conference organisers enough time to load your talk into the conference program prior to the tech checks and rehearsals available for all presenters and session chairs in the week before the conference. Ultimately, meeting this deadline will help to ensure your presentation runs smoothly at the conference.

Yes! ESA student prizes are an important opportunity to recognise the great work of our up and coming ecologists, and a key component of the conference. The student prizes will be announced at the last conference session on Thursday 3 December.

There will be live Q&A and speaker interaction for all presentations through two communication options:

(1)   Using the chat function to ask questions of the presenter while a talk is playing, and

(2)   Through a live video Q&A at the end of every session.

All conference materials will remain available to registered attendees until 31 December.

You are free to record your video with any software you feel comfortable with. If you have little experience recording videos, we recommend using either Microsoft PowerPoint or Zoom to complete your recording. There are guidelines to help presenters here.

Registration fees help to cover the costs of holding a virtual conference. These costs include the purchase of software licenses required to deliver concurrent sessions and presentations, host live speaker interaction, social and networking events, host content online for an extended period after the conference, and ensure cybersecurity. The other key cost for the virtual conference is the staff time required to organise and execute the event, and assist presenters and attendees throughout the conference. 

The ESA has set fees in order to cover costs, and does not expect to profit from the conference. The ESA has always been committed to making the conference accessible to as many people as we can, and for that reason this year we are continuing to offer grants and subsidies including financial hardship grants, and parental support grants. For more information please contact

A full virtual registration includes live access to all conference sessions during the conference dates of 30 NOVEMBER – 4 DECEMBER 2020 as well as access to all online conference content (approximately 400 recorded presentations and posters) until the end of the year.

Each day of the conference will include a plenary presentation with live Q&A, concurrent sessions with a range of themed symposia and open forum, workshops, networking opportunities and poster sessions.

Symposia and open forum sessions will have pre-recorded talks with live Q&A interaction with presenters. Some symposia will also have live panel and open discussion opportunities.

A poster gallery will be available for the duration of the conference, along with scheduled poster sessions for live interaction with poster presenters.