The ACHS international conference is hosted every two years by a partner institution chosen by the assembly of members after a bidding process. The general guidelines to be followed to submit an expression of interest (EOI) to host a conference can be found below. More specific guidelines, including the EOI form, can be obtained by contacting the ACHS vice-president for conferences and events.


ACHS Conference Bid Proposal Guidelines

1.0 Introduction

This document describes the protocol for preparing a bid to host the Association for Critical Heritage Studies (ACHS) biannual conference. Diversity, equity, and inclusion are central to the ACHS mission and we encourage proposals from underrepresented countries and/or regions. In doing so, the Association stresses that it does not intend to colonize regions of the world by telling the hosts how to act, but we also stand by these values. We respect the autonomy of conference organizers and are thankful for the work they put into these large events that are essential to the Organization.

Prospective hosts are required to submit an expression of interest (EOI) that outlines how they will meet the requirements outlined in this document.

Bids received by the deadline will be reviewed by the Conferences and Events Committee to ensure that the form is complete. After initial review, the Committee will send information to guide in preparing the proposal. Prospective hosts are required to present their plans in person or via proxy to the ACHS general membership at the general meeting of the biannual conference. ACHS members will vote to select the host.

2.0 Requirements for Hosting an ACHS Conference

Host: The prospective host organizer must be a member of the ACHS and the Expression of Interest must be signed by the Head (e.g., Dean/President/Chair/Executive Director) of the host’s institution, organization, and/or department.

Accessibility: The Conference venue must be accessible to those with diverse physical abilities, including elevators/ramps to all floors/rooms and wheelchair and gender accessible bathrooms on site. The venue must be near an accessible airport and parking facilities.

Language: Conferences will be conducted in English. In the event of offering specific sessions or keynotes in a language other than English, it will be the responsibility of the organizers to provide simultaneous translation.

Conference Facilities: The following facilities should be available at the proposed conference venue:

o A meeting room for plenary sessions which can accommodate at least 250 participants. The meeting room must include a stage with a lectern, audiovisual services, and internet access.

• There should be easy access to toilet facilities, and ideally a place for nursing mothers.

• There should be an easily accessible Registration Area – this should be a size that could accommodate approximately 20 persons at any one time.

• There should be at least 8 additional rooms for concurrent sessions.

• There should be adequate ventilation, including air conditioning, if appropriate.

The hosts are recommended to secure venues through their academic or professional institutions, as a way to keep costs manageable.

Accommodation: Hosts must consider that participants may have various financial and other needs and personal preferences. It is essential that hosts consider proximity and affordability in their bid. The host is expected to negotiate with hotel vendors to reserve and block rooms for conference participants, when possible at preferential rates.

Transportation: The host organization must provide detailed information about transportation to the city and venue. This includes information about how participants can access the venue. Attention to safety, comfort, ability, and cost are a priority. If necessary, this may be facilitated and paid for as part of the participants’ registration fees.

Conference Package Costs: Please include a budget that outlines conference costs related to, at a minimum, meals and breaks, other social events, website hosting, venue rental (if applicable), personnel costs, and costs associated with keynote speakers. ACHS encourages hosts to seek sponsorship for social events. The hosts are required to separate the registration fees from the closing dinner. While ACHS strives to raise money for bursaries to enable members in under-represented and/or under-privileged categories (students, early career academics, independent professionals, persons based in developing countries), hosts should not count on these bursaries. It is the hosts’ responsibility to ensure that conference fees are accessible and affordable.

Organization and Management: The EOI must describe the management and administrative mechanisms which the host will put in place for the preparation and hosting of the conference, e.g., the appointment of a Local Organizing Committee or Steering Committee. The ACHS Vice-President (Conference) should be an ex officio member of said Committee. In the year prior to the conference, the host organization must report on a monthly basis to the Executive Committee of ACHS on progress toward the planning of the conference.

Duties and responsibilities of hosts:

Hosts are required to:

● Liaison with ACHS Executive Committee and keep EC apprised about the meeting (e.g., selection of keynotes, themes, and so on). A report to the EC is expected every two months.

Hosts are encouraged to:

● secure the support of regional chapters/networks who may support facilitation of conference organization.

● provide opportunities for postgraduate members to network with keynotes and other ACHS members.

Financial Arrangements and Support:

o Conference fees will be paid in their entirety to the host institution/organization.

o The ACHS cannot financially support the host institution organization. Conference fees (which must be approved by the Executive Committee of ACHS) and sponsorship or other support secured by the prospective host must cover conference costs.

Conference Fees: ACHS seeks to maintain a conference fee that is economically accessible, bearing in mind the diversity of situations of ACHS members (students, early career, independent researchers, residents in the developing world). The host may want to offer low-income rates, student rates, and early-bird rates. Hosts are encouraged to provide opportunities for the local community to attend events. Proposed conference fees shall be set in dialogue with the ACHS Executive Committee.

Financial relationship between host and the ACHS: participants need to be members of the ACHS prior to registering to the conference. In order to ensure compliance with this requirement, the ACHS will provide a payment gateway for the hosts’ website linked to its membership database. All payments made through that gateway will be directed to the host’s Stripe or PayPal Pro account and the ACHS will not collect nor manage any money collected for the conference registration. 

Arrangements for the Conference and Pre-Conference Workshop: The EOI should outline the staffing and facilities for event and registration. A Conference Secretariat should be made available to members of ACHS prior to the conference. This should include access to telephones, fax, email, photocopier, and printer facilities. Accessible internet access in the venue should be made available for conference participants.

Social Events: The ACHS Conference requires 1) a formal opening ceremony and 2) a dinner reception. ACHS encourages the host to provide optional tour program(s) for participants at additional cost to participants.

Timing and the Duration of the Conference: The timing and schedule of the Conference will be determined by the host institution and the ACHS Executive Committee. The Conference (including all optional programming) is normally held for four to six (4-6) days – one (1) day for optional pre- or post-conference programming and three to five (3-5) days for the conference.

Keynote Speakers: When inviting keynotes, the Local Organizing Committee or Steering Committee should bear in mind matters of gender, ethnic, sexual, and disciplinary diversity.