International Microwave Symposium
and Procedures Manual
Prepared by Tom Ruttan
Reviewed by Barry Perlman
Table of Contents
1. Purpose and Duties
2. Suggested Membership Structure
3. Timeline of Events
4. Description of Events
5. Problems Encountered
6. Suggestions and Recommendations
8. Recent IMS Reports
Multiyear Workshop Statistics
1. Purpose and Duties
The purpose of the Workshop Committee Chair(s) is to organize
and coordinate the IMS Workshops and related publications.
Recruiting if the Workshop Committee (WC)
Overall management and coordination of the
Workshop Committee (WC) activities.
Provide periodic status reports and coordinate
activity with the TPC Chair(s)
Develop a strategy and policy for determining
the workshop focus areas and selection criteria.
Generating information and insuring distribution
of the Workshop call for proposals in the IMS Call for Papers.
Work directly with relevant MTT Technical
Committee Chairs (TCC) and TCC Chair for help and guidance with determining
workshop/tutorial topics and potential Workshop Organizers (WO).
Work with the IMS Webmaster to insure that the
Workshop Submission System (WSS) (that is typically part of the TPC Paper
Submission System (PSS)) is working properly for the Workshop proposals and the
individual workshop presentations.
Create a guide for Workshop Organizers (WO) and
presenters with all necessary information and insure it is put on the IMS
Interact with potential WO to supply them with
information, encouragement and presenter recruitment ideas.
Screen and validate the workshop proposals with
the WC and TPC members and select the final workshops and tutorials.
Coordinate input on the workshop proposals and
solicit proposals from the relevant MTT Technical Committee Chair (TCC) and the
Coordinate the submission of the workshop
presentation with the WO to insure they meet the deadlines, have the correct
mix of presenters and that the content is acceptable for IMS.
Develop a statement of work, select suppliers
(typically the CDROM supplier is the same as used for the Symposium digest) and
obtain price quotations for the CDROM and workshop notes.
Work with the suppliers, TPC Webmaster and WO to
compile all the workshop/tutorial presentations from the WSS files for the
Workshop CDROM and Workshop notes. This
includes obtaining signed permission-to-publish forms from all the presenters.
Provide budget estimates and final cost
information to the TPC Chair(s) for all Workshop expenses.
Provide information on Workshop/Tutorial
descriptions, abstracts, presenter detail and all other necessary information
to Horizon House and the Publications subcommittee for inclusion in the IMS
advanced program and digest.
Develop and negotiate Workshop/Tutorial
conference room availability and size with the appropriate IEEE and conference
center representatives. This is an
ongoing process that begins with a rouge estimate when the initial
Workshop/Tutorial proposals are submitted to a finalization based on
registration numbers the day before (or sometimes the day of) the beginning of
Insures the final deadline and deliveries are
met for the CDROM Workshop digests and the Workshop notes.
2. Suggested Membership
Coordinates the activities of the WC; insures the key milestones are
met; insures good link up and coordination with the TPC and other IMS
groups; reports progress to TPC Chair(s); and fills in whatever capacity
Insures Workshops are publicized in all appropriate IMS publications;
communicates and coordinates information exchange between WO, WC,
presenters, TPC, TCC; communicates acceptance/rejection notices of Workshop/Tutorial
proposals; provides any other needed communication between individuals and
groups to insure the success of the Workshops; reviews and provides inputs
on the Workshop proposals and presentations.
Works with WO to get their material in on time and with proper content and
format; work with the CDROM and Workshop notes suppliers to coordinate
their production; insure the Workshop digest and notes are published and
distributed on time; reviews and provides inputs on the Workshop proposals
and presentations; this is a very big job that requires someone that will
be committed to this task, particularly during the publication deadlines
prior to IMS.
Day Owners (3)
One person assigned to each of the Workshop days (Sunday, Monday and
Friday) to coordinate logistics with the respective WO; provide guidance
and assistance to the WO; insure the Workshops/Tutorials are successfully
presented during the Symposium; reviews and provides inputs on the Workshop
proposals and presentations.
One or more TCC representatives to provide guidance and support to the WC
to identify workshop topics, WO prospects and review of workshop proposals
3. Timeline of Events
Most of the WC activities were linked to the TPC activities
and deadlines, but here is a more detailed look at the WC deliverables:
Time (before IMS) Task
24 months Attend IMS and shadow their
~17 months Workshop Committee members
14 months First Call for Papers ready
to go to press w/ Workshop/Tutorial suggested categories
12 months TPC June meeting
12 months WC members shadow their WC at
12 months Finalize the WC membership
9 months Workshop proposals
8 months Workshop proposals selected
8 months TPC membership finalized
7 months PSS ready for paper
6 months Workshop schedule
finalized, including commit list of presenters and all presentation abstracts
4 months Workshop inputs for Advanced
3 months All material ready for
Workshop notes and CDROM printers
5 weeks Final Workshop notes/CDROM
2 weeks Workshop notes and CDROMs
ready to ship to Convention Center
During IMS Coordination, attend meetings
and parties, handoff
after IMS Final report complete
4. Description of Events
Planning and Learning the Tasks
Early discussions with prior year’s Workshop Chair and committee
members is very useful. There
usually a lot of general concepts and ideas that can help to understand
what needs to be done and to identify some of the pitfalls. Shadowing the WC members for the prior
IMS is also very helpful. One can
get a general idea of the size of the tasks and how well the workshops are
organized and executed. I found
that this was where I formulated a number of my core ideas and determined
what worked well and where changes needed to be made to improve the
process. This also takes some of
the mystery and ambiguity out of the job, since one gets a much more tangible
concept of the tasks ahead by observing your predecessor’s in action. Recruiting as many of the WC members by
this time to attend this IMS is also very beneficial so that the team has
had the same experiences.
Workshop Categories and Solicit Proposals
It is important to get the WC together as early as possible to
brainstorm ideas and develop a list of topics or categories for workshops
and tutorials. This will draw form
the collective experiences of all the WC members to come up with timely
and relevant topics. Many of the
topics will be carried over from year to year, based on the desires of the
various MTT technical committees (TC) and the popularity of the subjects. We felt that it was important to open
this up to draw in new ideas and subjects to compliment the more
traditional categories. By opening
this up, we were able to get a large number of proposals and some new
topics that were very relevant to the industry for the time period for IMS
2002. Traditionally many of the
workshop proposals come from the Technical Committee Chairs (TCC’s) and
this remains as a key source of proposals, but we found it was also
productive to solicit proposals from other sources, such as WC member
industry contacts, and of course, from the Call for Papers. The process that we used also called for
the authors of the workshop proposals to try to get sponsorship from one
or more of the MTT TC’s . This did
not always happen and we did not automatically reject a proposal just because
it did not have a TC sponsor. We
also worked with the RFIC TPC to gather and integrate their proposals into
this workshop effort.
and Selecting the Workshop/Tutorial Proposals
The first task, of course is to receive enough proposals so that there
is enough to choose from to make good selections. The process outlined in the previous
section should hopefully yield enough proposals. In our case, we had enough so that we
had about a 50% acceptance rate.
Part of this selection process is to determine how many workshop
and tutorial slots are available.
This determination was made in discussions with the WC, IMS TPC,
RFIC TPC, and an assessment of number of available conference rooms at the
A key resource for this and the completion of all the presentation
material was the Workshop Submission System (WSS) and the interaction with
the Webmaster who owns this. It is
critical that this system is set up and functioning properly 4-6 weeks prior
to the proposal deadline. This is well
in advance of the Paper Submission System (PSS) for the IMS papers, but
will use basically the same structure.
We worked very hard in the with the Webmaster 10-11 months before
IMS to design and debug all the features necessary for the workshops.
The criteria we used to select the proposals was based on 1) technical
merit; 2) perceived symposium attendees interest level; 3) fit within the
scope and technical topics of IMS and RFIC; 4) credibility of the
proposal, i.e. is this a credible proposal based on abstract,
endorsements, speaker list and breadth of companies represented?; 5) would
the evaluator attend this workshop or tutorial? In addition to the WC, other reviewers
were some IMS TPC members and the RFIC TPC. I attempted to get inputs from the
relevant TCC’s for the proposals that did not have a sponsor, but only
received responses from about 40% of those asked.
Ready for Workshop Notes and CDROM Printers
This was probably the hardest task of the entire effort. Critical ingredients to make this work
properly included 1) a well functioning WSS; this worked very well for us
and made is possible to review and compile all the material in the
required time (the Workshops/Tutorials was like a good size conference by
itself with approximately 250 presentations spread over 27 workshops and 3
tutorials); 2) A dedicated Workshop Publication Editor (and others on the
WC willing to put the time in); this requires many hours of reviewing
editing and compiling to have everything ready for the production
deadline; 3) CDROM supplier with the knowledge and willingness to help
with this task.
Leading up to the reviewing, editing and compiling this material was
getting the workshop and tutorial presenters to submit their presentations
on time. The majority of the WO
owners did an excellent job of managing their presenters and meeting the
submission deadline, but as usual, the 80-20 rule applies. 20% of the presentations took 80% of the
time. Motivating and cajoling the
delinquent authors and WO’s to respond and meet the deadline was the most
frustrating and difficult part of this whole experience. In order to publish the presentations in
the CDROM for distribution to the workshop attendees, each author was
required to sign a permission to publish form. This proved to be a fairly difficult
logistics problem, and also required last minute cajoling of some authors
in order to include their material in the CDROM. In the end, there were only a very few
presentations that did not make it into the CDROM or workshop notes.
Once the material had been submitted for CDROM and workshop notes
printing, most of the work was done.
There was a lot of coordination required in the TPC meetings in the
2-3 month leading up to IMS to insure that there was enough conference
rooms of the correct size assigned to the workshops and tutorials at the
Convention Center. We monitored the
admission numbers prior to and during IMS, and some last minute, on site
room assignment adjustments had to be made.
One of our biggest concerns at IMS was insuring that the workshop notes
and CDROM digests were delivered to the Convention Center on time. This required frequent communications
with the suppliers, shippers and customs (our CDROM where produced in Australia)
to solve any last minute problems and insure on time delivery. When the material was delivered, we
coordinated the distribution with the Convention Center personnel and the
team of IMS volunteers so that the CDROM’s were delivered to the
registration area and the proper workshop notes were delivered each
morning and afternoon to the workshops and tutorials.
5. Problems Encountered
The biggest problem we face was delinquent and
unresponsive presentation authors. There
were only a few that caused the problems, but they required a tremendous amount
of time and effort. We had deadlines,
that we driven by the production deadlines for the workshop notes and CDROM
digest, but we wanted to get as many of the presentations into publication as
possible. Perhaps enforcing the deadlines
more aggressively with stern warnings to the authors ahead of time might have
Final review and compiling of the material for
publication took a lot of effort. This
was made easier by the WSS and electronic correspondent in general, but the burden
fell mostly on the Workshop Publication Editor and the CDROM supplier. Perhaps a better way to do this would be
similar to the IMS paper review at the January TPC meeting where all the WC
members and the CDROM supplier meet for a day and complete the final editing
and compiling. This would spread the
work over more people in a focused, concentrated time frame.
Since the CDROM’s were produced by an off shore
supplier, we had to deal with US customs for the CDROM delivery. The supplier did a good job in managing this
process and was mostly a smooth process, but two of the shipments were delayed
in customs in the last week before IMS due to a paperwork problem.
6. Suggestions and
The electronic submission system is essential
for success of this project. Start early
and work closely with the Webmaster to insure all the features are in the
system for ease of submission and ease of access by the WC. Test the system thoroughly prior to use.
Track the shipments of the CDROM and workshop notes
to the Convention Center carefully and proactively. Make sure you know where they are and how
they are getting to the destination.
Allow enough time for the shipping to accommodate unanticipated
Choose the Workshop Committee members carefully. This is difficult since it is a volunteer
activity, but try to recruit and pick people you know and have worked with
previously. The Publicity and
Publication editor are particularly key positions. Both of these positions require dedicated and
reliable people. The Publicity person
will do a lot of the communications and interactions (along with the WC Chair)
up front at the beginning of the project (usually until the presentation
material has been submitted) and the Publications Editor has a very big job and
the end. In the case of the IMS2002 WC,
there were excellent people in these jobs and it made the WC Chair’s job much
Remember that this is an all-volunteer team, and
everyone is there because they want to help and contribute to the success of
IMS. It is a big job that requires a lot
of organization and coordination, but it should be a fun and rewarding
experience for everyone. It helps to
stay on top of things, anticipate as much as possible, and motivate in a
positive manor and with a sense of humor.
Establish good relationships and communication
links with the other members of the TPC.
They will be a great source of help and guidance through this project.
The Workshop Committee Chair was a very time consuming and
demanding job. I found it to be very
rewarding because of: 1) the sense of accomplishment of successfully completing
a challenging task; 2) working with and getting to know a lot of very talented
people; 3) establishing new professional contacts in the industry; and 4)
making an important contribution to the profession.
8. Recent IMS Reports
2004 11-03 Update Rev 03.ppt
File Creation Rev1b.pdf
Dive into IMS2017 Workshops and Short Courses!.pdf
IMS2017 RF Boot Camp.pdf
New for IMS2017 - Exhibitor Workshops.pdf
9.0 Multiyear Workshop