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**Updated ISA Statement Regarding Coronavirus**

ISA has been monitoring recent global developments quite closely in the run-up to the Hawaii annual convention in late March. We know, for instance, that some potential attendees will be prevented from traveling to Hawaii because of restrictions related to the coronavirus. And we have also noted some other changes in governmental policies from various countries that may also impact travel.
As a result, for those attendees who are directly impacted by recent governmentally-imposed restrictions (e.g., travel bans because of global health concerns or the very recent imposition of travel restrictions for federally-funded Brazilian universities), ISA is offering the opportunity to provide a recorded audio presentation that can be played at the annual convention in Hawaii. Real-time, live presentations are not possible.    
To take advantage of this opportunity, the following conditions must be met:
  • You must already be on the Hawaii program and maintain a paid conference registration. No exceptions will be made.
  • Commit to a recorded audio presentation by 2/21/2020 by contacting No exceptions will be made.
  • Provide the recorded presentation file by 3/1/2020. No exceptions will be made.
    • Instructions for file-upload will be provided to those who commit to a recorded presentation by the specified date.
    • Recordings must be no longer than 10 minutes in length.
  • Documentation must be provided to ISA HQ about why you are unable to travel based on the governmental regulations. Such documentation can include proof of flight cancellation, notice of governmental restrictions, and any other documentation deemed appropriate. ISA HQ reserves all rights to determine the validity of the documentation, the individual’s rationale for requesting a recorded presentation and the impact of governmental regulations on an individual’s travel.
  • It will be the responsibility of the chair/discussant to provide any feedback on the presentation and it will be their discretion as to whether or not they choose do so. ISA HQ will not be responsible for providing any feedback to recorded presenters.
We know that this is an imperfect solution to problematic global concerns, but we do hope that it helps to serve the intellectual and professional development needs of ISA members as best we can in this challenging environment.
Please note: This is not the launch of a new, regular program-offering for ISA, given the significant costs involved. Rather, it is an extraordinary measure to address issues that are beyond the control of those who have registered and planned to attend the Hawaii meeting.
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Posted in: Annual Convention


Thomas F. Homer-Dixon
Friday, February 21, 2020 2:19 PM
It's good to see that the ISA leadership is exhibiting some flexibility for attendees affected by coronavirus travel restrictions. But the situation is (as of February 21) changing very rapidly. With the virus now spreading in Iran and South Korea, it appears that we're in the early stages of a global pandemic. By late March, many more countries will be affected by travel restrictions, so the deadlines and constraints in this notice need to be relaxed. And ISA should give consideration to allowing registered participants and panelists to withdraw from the conference without penalty, if they are concerned about the health risks (arising from the spread of the coronavirus) of traveling.
Karen Bakker
Saturday, February 22, 2020 12:00 AM
The New York Times reported several days ago that the ISA conference hotel resort in Honolulu was the accommodation used by Japanese tourists who now have confirmed cases of COVID-19. I am surprised that ISA has not updated its statement given this situation.
Chieh-Chi Hsieh
Saturday, February 22, 2020 7:14 AM
I applaud ISA for increasing flexibility for attendees due to the ongoing outspread of coronavirus. However, I must echo the above comment that there seems to be a burgeoning outspread of cases not only in South Korea, but also in Japan as well as other regional countries. ISA must take into account that flying to Honolulu would entail attendees to be exposed in an enclosed environment which allows easier transmission of viruses. Moreover, given the location of the conference, many attendees flying from Europe (myself included) may have a layover in Asia, which inevitably increases difficulties for effectively reduce risks. Based on this, I agree that ISA should allow registered participants and panelists to withdraw from the conference without penalty on these grounds.
Chieh-Chi Hsieh
Sunday, February 23, 2020 11:56 AM
I am unsure why my previous comment was not posted here but the gist is as follows. I want to applaud ISA for introducing this mechanism for people that are affected by the recent outspread of the coronavirus. However, I want to echo the above comment that ISA should allow registered participants and panelists to withdraw without penalties.

I think this is reasonable because given the location, the majority of attendees have to fly to arrive in Honolulu, and that will entailed being in an enclosed environment during the flight duration. This increases the probability of infections. In addition, with the ongoing outspread of the virus, this implicates that anyone that is having a layover in Asia during their flight to the convention (myself included) will be exposed to greater risks, and it would also be difficult for ISA to monitor and prevent these risks during the conference. On the basis of this, I hope ISA would consider the option for those who would like to withdraw from the conference on these grounds the right to do so without any penalties.
Svetla Ben-Itzhak
Tuesday, February 25, 2020 2:14 PM
I second Thomas Homer-Dixon that "SA should give consideration to allowing registered participants and panelists to withdraw from the conference without penalty, if they are concerned about the health risks (arising from the spread of the coronavirus) of traveling."
Giuseppe Luca Moliterni
Wednesday, February 26, 2020 9:02 AM
In Italy the situation is a bit complicated at the moment, I only hope I won't have problems at the arrivals, considering that it will take a 24 hours journey to get there. Maybe the conference should have been postponed.
Lucrecia Garcia Iommi
Wednesday, February 26, 2020 3:57 PM
Should there be a discussion about the conference being postponed? Beyond current and future travel restrictions, it seems that there are additional risks associated with traveling for the conference. Postponing later if it becomes absolutely necessary might create additional difficulties for participants.

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