Program Committee
Jobs Manual


A.     Committee Description & Membership

The PES By-Laws describe the Committee in Article I, Section 1:

“A Program Committee of at least ten members shall be appointed by the President-Elect within 90 days of agreeing to serve as President. The President shall appoint a member as chair of the Program Committee for the Annual Meeting and, in consultation with the Program Chair, shall appoint additional members of the Program Committee. The Program Chair shall supervise the review of submissions to the Annual Meeting, assemble the Program, and supervise the editing of the Yearbook.” 

B.     Role of the Committee Chair (Program Chair)

Initial duties:  After the President-Elect selects the Program Chair, they work together to craft a theme for the annual meeting.  The President needs to invite the Kneller Lecturer and invite a respondent for the Kneller and for the Presidential Address.  The Program Chair works with the Conference Management Committee to make sure the hotel contract includes at least one meeting room that will be equipped with an LCD projector and screen for any presenters wanting to use technology. 

Subsequent duties are specified below.  Extended materials are available with templates for communications throughout the process. 

C.     Timelines and Triggers

January (about 14 months before your conference):

  • Identify, invite and solidify Program Committee members before the PES Annual Meeting so that you can have a Program Committee Meeting at the PES Annual Meeting. If you have enough lead-time, the current program chair can list this meeting in the Program and assign a room. In 2013 there were 21 program committee members, in 2014 there were 20, and for 2015 there are 23.

  • Generally program committee members represent diversity within PES in myriad ways(e.g., race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, age, years on PES, doctoral program, areas of expertise, etc.) and typically do not include graduate students. Program chairs try to give members who have not been on the program committee before or in quite some time a chance to participate so that we don’t always have the same group centrally involved.

After PES Annual Meeting

  • Call for Programs: Post Theme and Call for Programs on the PES website.

Things to clarify in the Call:

  • Multiple Submissions: Need to clarify in Call For Papers (on website and in July/October newsletters) that authors may submit only one primary paper (i.e., paper to be considered for presentation/publication as a concurrent/general session) (This was approved in 2008).

  • Multiple alternative sessions and/or Alternative session(s) + primary paper are permitted.

  • All submitters should be asked to specify if they will need an LCD Projector for their presentation, though we cannot guarantee availability of technology.

  • While Paper reviews are anonymous to the reviewers, alternative session reviews are not. Need to include names of panel members, etc.

  • Alternative session proposals must specify the of session being proposed (e.g., Book Panels/Author-meets-critics, Work-in-Progress, Topical Discussion, or something else)

  • Authors submitting a primary paper may not submit the abstract of paper as an alternative session (specifically, as a work-in-progress); Paper submitters should be asked to specify willingness to serve as a Respondent or to present a Work-in-Progress if the Paper is not accepted.

  • Abstracts: Call for Papers and also July/October Newsletters: need to specify that authors of primary papers include an abstract of their paper. Abstracts may not exceed 125 words. Abstracts are printed and made available at the conference (generally the program chair puts together the Abstract document and provides it to post on the website and prints out about 50 copies to have at the PES Registration table). No abstracts are required for alternative session proposals.


  • Executive Director sends out PES newsletter with the Call for Papers. This should include the Theme, the PES Yearbook Style Sheet, and general instructions for submission (e.g., PES email address, program chair email address).

  • : SIGS are allotted one early morning (7:45-9:00am) “breakfast meeting” session. But, they must submit proposals and undergo review process for SIG-Sponsored alternative sessions.

  • Standing Committees (COPA, CORE, COSW, JPE, Membership): Although each Standing Committee generally is allotted one program session, the sessions that are sponsored by Standing Committees still need to be proposed under the same guidelines as the Alternative Sessions.  It is the President and Program Chair’s discretion on how to handle these sessions. In past years, under the presumption of acceptance, these session proposals still underwent review by the Program Chair, President (in some cases), and Graduate Program Assistants to ensure that the session was well planned and speakers/panelists were on board.


  • Call for Papers goes out again in PES October newsletter.


  • November 1 is traditionally the submission deadline.


  • Submission Review.

  • Provide guidance to reviewers on the review process (See extended materials).


  • Notification to submitters. Typically PES has 30 General Sessions (the 3 highest rated papers) and 30 Concurrent Session papers. The number of Alternative sessions has varied, but has been around 25.

  • Program Chair invites and solidifies Paper Session Respondents and Chairs, providing instructions and expectations to session respondents and chairs (See extended materials).

  • Send draft program to Conference Management Committee so that a general schedule can be provided to hotel to meet contractual deadline.


  • Program Chair builds the Program. It is due to the Executive Director approximately 3-4 weeks before the annual meeting so that the Executive Director has time to format and have the program printed and shipped to the meeting site.

During and after Conference:

  • Provide instructions to authors on submission for the PES yearbook, including securing copyright (See extended materials).

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