Participant Testimonials

Aug 02 - Aug 07, 2020

Before we decided to have our workshop online, we were not sure how it would work. The participants belong to largely different time zones. And few of us were much experienced with online academic meetings.

Despite such discouraging factors, we thought we had better try to do something during this difficult time, so we decided to follow the suggestion of BIRS to have our workshop online rather than completely canceling it.

In the end, it was the right decision. The meeting went on far better than our initial expectation. The talks were given just as smoothly as in a regular face-to-face meeting. We were able to talk to each other during the break. It was also a good idea to have an informal get-together session on Sunday before the formal meeting started on Monday.

Of course, an online meeting cannot be a complete replacement of a regular face-to-face meeting. In the latter, besides the formal talks, we could further exchange our ideas and deepen our discussions during lunch breaks and the dinner time, which is not possible in an online meeting. Also, the magnificent surroundings of Banff, which provide us with a lot of inspiration, is clearly missing in an online meeting.

Nonetheless, in our online workshop, we were able to have a vivid glimpse of what other people are doing these days in our research area, which was quite stimulating. It also gave young researchers a precious opportunity to present their work in front of leading experts. Also, we could invite additional people as non-speaker participants, including young students and some people from another workshop, which would not have been possible in a regular face-to-face meeting. This can be regarded as an advantage of an online meeting.

In the end, we are glad that we have organized this online meeting. Many participants liked it very much. We would like to thank BIRS for making our online workshop possible.

On the other hand, even though our online meeting was a success, it cannot be a complete replacement of a real meeting in Banff. In fact, many participants told us that they look forward very much to seeing each other face-to-face in Banff in the near future.

on behalf of the organizing committee of 20w5205

Hiroshi Matano Director
Meiji Institute for Advanced Study of Mathematical Sciences, Meiji University

Thank you very much for the organization of this great event. I think the workshop is well organized and very successful. I also like the talk videos on BIRS website. It is very useful and I have saved them in my computer already. Thank you for all your efforts.

Yuxiang Zhang Tianjin University