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Conference Conclusions


by Evan Sinar and Rustin Meyer

Highlights from the SIOP 2013 Post-Conference Survey

Evan Sinar, Program Chair, SIOP 2014 Development Dimensions International (DDI)

Rustin Meyer, Conference Evaluation Chair, Georgia Institute of Technology

SIOP 2013 Overview

The 28th annual SIOP Conference in Houston, TX was one of the most successful on record! We particularly appreciated the time of those who completed the post-conference survey – this information is instrumental for us in continuing to improve the conference. We've analyzed all the data, read your comments, and provide a few key highlights below.

Your overall evaluation for SIOP 2013 was very positive – 92% were satisfied, with 6% neutral and only 1% dissatisfied. The vast majority (86%) also reported that your interests in the field were stimulated by the conference. When we probed into this further by asking you for one representative word of the conference as a whole, you described SIOP 2013 as:

This year's conference was also quite diverse in the perspectives represented and cross-affiliation networking opportunities available: 54% of respondents to the post-conference survey self-identified as practitioners, 46% as academics, and 36% (a subset of the academic group) as students.

Specific Areas of Input

Those who stayed through the closing plenary for Reverend TJ Martinez's Invited Address were rewarded by an extremely highly-rated session– 92% of respondents agreed that he was an excellent speaker. Among the remaining program sessions, IGNITE sessions were viewed most positively, with 97% agreeing that they were well-done and 95% rating the presenters as engaging and thought-provoking.

In terms of conference logistics, your feedback indicated prominent strengths for the conference hotel's facilities and accommodations – viewed positively by 91% and 93% of respondents, respectively – and also opportunities for improvement, most notably in nearby dining and entertainment options, rated highly by just over 50% of respondents.

We also received important input on the topics you're most energized about and we anticipate seeing even more sessions on these topics in future years. As shown by the Word Cloud below, you are most excited about the future of Big Data, Leadership/Leadership Development, Humanitarian Work Psychology, Neuroscience in I/O, and Social Media applications in I/O. Clearly, SIOP 2013 generated value for its attendees by both sparking interest in emerging research and practice topics, and by rekindling excitement about established content areas.

Looking Forward to Future Conferences

Building on the success of and your very positive reactions to SIOP 2013 in Houston, next year's conference in Honolulu promises to be one of the most talked-about SIOPs of all time. Its setting as an East-West cultural crossroads is extremely unique, the invited programming will blend must-see subject matter with highly-engaging presentation formats, the conference facilities are unparalleled, and many surrounding opportunities exist for dining, entertainment, and sightseeing. We recognize that cost and logistical factors are on the minds of those considering attending, and we are taking steps to ensure that when you join us you will find it more than worthwhile and that you will come away professionally enriched and personally rejuvenated.

One further request – early indications are of a high submission rate to the 2014 conference. Because of this, we are in need of volunteers to review submissions. Please consider signing up to review and when doing so, be sure to carefully indicate your areas of interest/expertise so we can match you with submissions that align with your preferred topics. We're also improving other aspects of the reviewer process based on your feedback – including updating the guidance for reviewers and increasing visibility for those serving as reviewers. SIOP continues to thrive because its dedicated members generously offer their expertise to the next generation of scientist-practitioners, and we hope you'll contribute to the Society as a reviewer to shape the 2014 conference.

We greatly appreciate the time of all who responded to the post-conference survey. Your input is essential to our ability to create a conference that matches your increasing expectations for its value. While we could not in this brief summary outline all we learned from your survey responses and comments, please be assured that we review everything you've told us, taking every action possible to adjust for future years accordingly. Planning for SIOP 2014 in Honolulu is well underway. Your input has already been, and will continue to be, absolutely integral to our efforts to meet our – and more importantly, your – goals for the upcoming conference!