Guidelines for organizing a CiE conference

General overview

The conference series CiE-CS (“Computability in Europe”) is an interdisciplinary annual conference series promoting the development of computability-related science, ranging over mathematics, computer science, and applications in various natural and engineering sciences such as physics and biology. The conference scope also includes the study of philosophy and history of computing as it relates to questions of computability. The conference series is linked to the Association CiE and run by a Steering Committee that selects locations for the annual conferences. CiE conferences typically take place end of June / beginning of July of each year.

The current members of the Steering Committee (SC) are listed on the CiE-CS webpage. Its task is to supervise the conference series as a whole, select locations, organizers and programme committees for the CiE conferences, and guarantee the standards of the individual conferences. The Steering Committee also decides in cases of exceptions to these guidelines or cases in which these guidelines do not apply. The organizers and PC chairs of individual CiE conferences should stay in close contact with the Steering Committee during the process of organizing a CiE conference.

In the following, we describe the organisation of the conference CiE n where n refers to the year in which the conference is organized. In particular n-1 refers to the year before the conference, n-2 to the year two years before the conference etc.

Organization Timetable

Year n-3 Potential conference sites propose CiE n to the Steering Committee. The Steering Committee selects a site, organizers and PC chairs.
Summer n-2 After CiE n-2, the Steering Committee installs the Programme Committee for CiE n.
Early n-1 The exact dates for CiE n should be fixed. The PC takes up its work, selecting invited speakers and special sessions.
June n-1 At CiE n-1, the list of speakers and special sessions for CiE n is presented by one of the PC chairs at the closing session.
July n-1
  • Steering Committee discusses potential gaps in the PC and potentially adds new members for the PC, based on experience with CiE n-1
  • PC chairs invite special session organizers.
  • PC chairs (assisted by the Steering Committee) apply for the LNCS proceedings volume.
  • First Announcement CiE n.
  • Organizers start applications for sponsorship and funding (ASL, EATCS, local and national funding agencies).
August / September n-1 Call for Papers CiE n.
December n-1 Deadline for submission CiE n
January n Reviewing
February n PC session and notification. Afterwards, Call for Informal Presentations.
March n Deadline for final versions
May n Deadline for informal presentation submissions

The Programme Committee

The Programme Committee (PC) is installed by the Steering Committee in the second half of year n-2. The Programme Committee should have between 30 and 40 members, broadly representing in a balanced way all areas of interest for the wide CiE community. The Steering Committee should pay particular attention to the representation of female researchers in the PC. Former CiE invited and tutorial speakers should be considered as PC members. At least one of the PC chairs of CiE n-1 and CiE n+1 should be in the PC of CiE n. In order to review philosophical and historical submissions, at least two PC members should be from these areas. All Steering Committee members have the right to be on the PC if they wish. If they are not on the PC, they will still get EasyChair access to the submissions in order to be included in the discussions.

CiE conferences have two PC chairs. It proved to be useful to have one local chair (also the main organizer) and one non-local chair. In the spirit of CiE, it would also be good to have the two PC chairs represent different areas of the CiE community, although this is not always easy to guarantee. The PC chairs are installed by the Steering Committee.

In the spring of year n-1, the PC of CiE n discusses the invitation of tutorial and invited speakers, as well as the topics of the special sessions. These will be presented by one of the PC chairs at CiE n-1. After CiE n-1, the Steering Committee discusses whether certain aspects were underrepresented at CiE n-1 and may add new members to the Programme Committee

In January and February of the year n, the PC will be handling the refereeing of submissions. All PC members are expected to take an active role in getting referee reports by experts before the deadline set by the PC chairs, and participate in the PC discussion after reviews are in.

Tutorials and Invited Speakers.

Each CiE conference has two tutorials of three one-hour lectures. The tutorial speakers are selected by the PC. Tutorials should provide an overview of an important research area for non-experts in order to attract more researchers into this area and should be given by leaders of this area known for a talent of presenting an overview to a non-expert audience. The quality of tutorial lectures is very important, and the PC should pay particular attention to the reputation of the candidates as speakers and teachers. CiE-CS wishes to promote female researchers and it is the task of the PC to consider inviting female tutorial speakers. The two tutorials should complement each other and be reasonably different in scope and area; in the past, having one more mathematical and one more computational tutorial has been a good recipe.

Each CiE conference has between six and eight invited speakers giving one-hour lectures. The invited speakers are selected by the PC. It is very important that the lecturers are able to present their work to the broad CiE audience, so the PC is discouraged from selecting speakers known to give highly specialized talks. CiE-CS wishes to promote female researchers and it is the task of the PC to consider inviting female invited speakers. The selection of the invited speakers is coordinated by the PC chairs who also decide on the selection mechanism (in discussion with the SC). Tutorial and invited speakers from past CiE conferences should be avoided.

Special Sessions.

Each CiE conference has six special sessions. Each of the special sessions has one or two organizers, appointed by the PC chairs. The PC discusses suggestions for topics for special sessions and advises the PC chairs. The topics are then fixed by the PC chairs in close cooperation with the SC. There are a number of rules on the representation of topics among the special sessions:

  • Topics should be specific, but not too specific. They should be of interest to a significant part of the participants of CiE.
  • At least one session has to be on a historical and/or philosophical topic.
  • At least one session has to be on a topic related to natural computation (including quantum computing).

The PC can suggest organizers to the PC chairs. The organizers are then selected by the PC chair and contacted over the summer of year n-1. At least one special session organizer per session should commit to come to the conference in order to chair the special session.

Each organizer can invite four speakers (for 30-minute talks) for the special session. These speakers will not receive any funding from CiE, but will not have to pay the registration fee. The PC chairs can allow special session organizers to use one of their four slots for a panel discussion. The special session organizers contacts the speakers and invites them. The organizers have to finalize the list of invitations by November n-1. The speakers will then be invited to submit an extended abstract or short paper for inclusion in the LNCS volume before the submission deadline. Special session organizers should not be speakers of their own special session.

Paper Submissions.

The CiE conference series aims at bringing together various communities. This means that it needs to accommodate various styles of conference organization, in particular those of mathematics and those of computer science. Like mathematics conferences, CiE conferences have a low threshold for acceptance for presentation (presentation of a paper at the conference does not constitute a publication); but like computer science conferences, they have a very high standard for acceptance for publication in the LNCS volume.

Important. PC and SC members are not allowed to submit papers to CiE conferences in the regular submission procedure. They are allowed to submit informal presentations (see below).

Papers submitted for the December deadline can be at most 10 pages long in LNCS style. Papers can contain an appendix which will not be printed. The referees are not required to consider the appendix during the refereeing process, but can do that if they wish. Papers longer than 10 pages can only be accepted for the LNCS volume under exceptional circumstances. Papers that are currently being reviewed by another conference or journal cannot be submitted for LNCS publication. They can only be accepted for presentation.

The LNCS volume. The refereeing standards for the LNCS volume are very high. We aim to produce a high quality research volume, and papers can only be accepted if their correctness is undisputed and the PC is convinced that they are of high research quality. It is important to keep in mind that papers have to be evaluated against the standards of their relevant research community (for example, the fact that a paper does not contain a proof might be a reason to reject a mathematical paper, but not to reject a philosophy paper; whereas failure to quote relevant source might be devastating for a history paper, but repairable for a computational paper). Published material is not acceptable for an LNCS volume. Survey or expository papers are only acceptable in exceptional cases. Note that papers must be in essentially publishable form in order to be accepted for the LNCS volume: if a paper requires major revisions, it will not be acceptable.

The PC chairs may accept papers which did not meet the high standards for acceptance to LNCS, but have an acceptable standard for informal presentation, as an informal presentation (see below).

Informal Presentations.

In addition to the CS-style submission procedure, CiE conferences have another category of talks called informal presentations. These talks are intended as a means of presenting work-in-progress or recent developments. The deadline for submission of abstracts of informal talks is between five and six weeks before the conference. Typically, a submission will have a title and a short abstract which can be between one paragraph and (at most) one page of text. Informal Presentations are not formally reviewed; they are considered by the PC chairs who accept or reject them. Informal presentations should be accepted, unless they are out of scope or inappropriate. If necessary, the PC chairs can consult the PC or individual PC members for support in the decision. The PC chairs can also consult the SC. Decisions should be made as quickly as possible after submission (not waiting for the submission deadline). Some people will need a confirmation of an accepted informal presentation three months before the conference (ASL travel grant deadline).

All accepted informal presentations will be provided to the conference participants in a set of notes entitled “Collection of Unpublished Abstracts” (possibly in electronic form). All PC and SC members are allowed to submit informal presentations.


For scheduling purposes, there are four types of presentations: Tutorials, Plenary Talks, Special Sessions, and Contributed Talks. Special Sessions and Contributed Talks will be held in parallel sessions. Tutorials get three one-hour slots, plenary talks 60 minutes, special session talks 30 minutes (if time permits, 40 or 45 minutes). Contributed talks get 20 minutes (or if time permits, 25 or 30 minutes, but they should be strictly shorter than the special session talks). All contributed presentations (those accepted for LNCS, and the informal presentations) will be given the same amount of presentation time. Presentations should be grouped by topic, not by type of publication.

Special sessions should be scheduled in three parallel sessions. Contributed talks should be scheduled in four to five parallel sessions (depending on total number of talks to be scheduled).

The schedule should contain a time slot for the Association AGM of the Association CiE, and for the Women in Computability workshop. The AGM will be coordinated by the Association president and a designated AGM chair;  the WiC workshop will be coordinated by an organizer chosen by the Steering Committee.

The schedule can contain half a day for an excursion.


The local organizers of a CiE conference are completely responsible for the budget of their conference. They decide on the registration fee from which they have to fund the general costs of running the conference, the purchase of the LNCS volumes, the production of the set of the abstract booklet (electronically or in print), and the travel and accommodation expenses of tutorial and invited (plenary) speakers. Tutorial and invited speakers should get their full travel and accommodation expenses paid. It is not expected to pay per diems or honoraria on top of that. Special session organizers and speakers get no reimbursement from the conference. The organizers are encouraged to provide travel grants for students and junior researchers. In particular, they are encouraged to get ASL sponsorship. (Note that the ASL travel grant deadline will be three months before the first day of the conference.)

The registration fee should be kept as low as possible as some parts of the CiE community still find it difficult to pay the registration fees that are common in computer science. Organizers are encouraged to have a special rate for students that is considerably lower than the regular registration rate. Early registration rates of the past years are given below; there is typically an early registration deadline in May after which the registration fee goes up by about 25-30%:

  Regular Student
CiE 2005 € 95 € 75
CiE 2006 € 180 € 120
CiE 2007 € 220 € 150 [included a free banquet]
CiE 2008 € 200 € 95
CiE 2009 € 220 € 100
CiE 2010 € 160 € 80
CiE 2011 € 200 € 100
CiE 2012 € 225 € 112  equivalent to £ 180/90 at the exchange rate of 24 May 2012
CiE 2013 € 200 € 100
CiE 2014 € 180 € 100
CiE 2015 € 200 € 100

Registration fees include the LNCS volume, the booklet of unpublished abstracts, and the reception. They do not normally include an excursion or the banquet.

Tutorial speakers, invited speakers, and speakers at special sessions do not have to pay the registration fee. Similarly, Steering Committee members, the PC chairs, special session organizers, and local organizers do not have to pay the registration fee. Programme Committee members who are neither chairs nor SC members do have to pay the regular fee (unless the organizers decide otherwise).

The local organizers are required to provide a preliminary budget about a year before the conference and a more detailed budget six months before the conference.

Conference Publications.

Pre-Proceedings. The Pre-Proceedings volume of CiE conferences appears in the series LNCS. Typically, the PC chairs of CiE n and one member of the Steering Committee are editors of the volume. It is the task of the PC chairs assisted by the Steering Committee to arrange the details with Springer.

Post-conference publication in the association journal. Since 2012, the Association CiE has its own journal, Computability. All authors of papers presented at CiE conferences are encouraged to submit the journal versions of their papers to this journal where they will be refereed as standard submissions (with no special treatment due to the fact that they were presented at a CiE conference).

Former policy: post-conference special issues. Until 2010, CiE conferences typically had three journal special issues as post-proceedings volumes. This number was reduced in 2011 and 2012, and there will be no further post-proceedings volumes from 2013 onwards. The list of the three journals was decided by the PC chairs in discussion with the Steering Committee, and the journals are contacted by the PC chairs or the SC. At the conference CiE n, there was a meeting of the PC chairs with the chair of the Steering Committee to decide on the editors of the post-proceedings volumes. Typically, the editors of the post-proceedings volumes were the PC chairs (or one of the PC chairs), a representative of the Steering Committee and area editors corresponding to the intended content of the volume, selected from the PC or the general community. Each of the three special issues had a recognizable theme.

Submission to the post-proceedings volumes was not open for everyone. Instead, the editors of the special issues invite authors of papers presented at CiE n for submission. Invitations were intended to be sent out within three weeks of CiE n. Each special issue had invited between 20 and 30 papers. All presented papers, i.e., tutorials, invited talks, special session talks, LNCS papers, presented papers, and informal presentations were eligible for invitation.

It was the intention of the editors to submit the special issue to the publisher before CiE n+1.

Policy to avoid double publication. The conference series Computability in Europe had a policy to avoid double publication. It was therefore not possible to publish the same paper in the LNCS volume and as a post-conference journal paper in the publishing venues coordinated by the conference series. In order be accepted as a journal paper, a paper must contain unpublished research content going significantly beyond the pre-publication in the LNCS volume (results that were published without proof in the LNCS volume will be considered unpublished for the purposes of determining this). The referees will be informed about this policy, be sent the LNCS publication in addition to the journal submission, and be asked to evaluate the scientific value of the material that is in the journal submission but not in the LNCS publication.