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Request for Proposals to Host Annual Meeting ("Sunbelt") of the International Network for Social Network Analysis (INSNA)

Groups and individuals interested in hosting the Sunbelt should provide the information listed in this RFP to the Board of Directors of INSNA.  Proposals should be submitted to the President of INSNA one month before an annual meeting so that they can be discussed at the meeting by the Board of Directors.  The annual meeting in 2013 is May 21-26.  Location decisions by the Board are made at least two years in advance of the year of the meeting the proposal seeks to host.  At the 2013 meetings in Hamburg, Germany, the Board of Directors will decide on the 2015 meetings and will consider any proposals to host in years 2016 and 2017.  Guidelines developed from past meetings are available from the President of INSNA.  Typically the meetings cycle among East Coast USA/North America (Sunbelt 2011 and 2014 in St Pete Beach FL), West Coast USA/North America (Sunbelt 2012 in Redondo Beach, CA), outside North America (Sunbelt 2013 in Hamburg, Germany).

1.                Location.  (Hotels, city conference centers, and university facilities have served as venues.)

2.            Proposed Meeting Dates (to include workshops and Sunbelt sessions).  (Workshops typically begin on Tuesday morning and continue through Wednesday morning with sessions starting on Wednesday afternoon and continuing through Sunday morning.  The number of plenary sessions has varied.  There is always one plenary session for the keynote address on Thursday late afternoon before the opening banquet.  In every other year, a second plenary is held late Friday afternoon for an address by the recipient of the Freeman Award.  Recent conferences have had a third plenary late Saturday afternoon for all posters.)

3.            Housing Space

*                  Hotels.  (Please provide the names of specific hotels and how many rooms are available for Sunbelt attendees.  For the 2011 Sunbelt at the TradeWinds Resort in St Pete Beach FL, the room block was 200 rooms for Tuesday night, 300 rooms for Wednesday through Friday night, 250 rooms for Saturday night, and 50 rooms for Sunday night.  For the 2012 Sunbelt the blocking is 156, 166, 186, 186, 146, and 15 for Tuesday-Sunday nights.)

*                  Complimentary rooms, if any.  (In US hotels, complimentary rooms are available to workshop organizers to accommodate conference organizers, keynote speakers.  At the 2011 Sunbelt, the hotel provided 1 complimentary room for every 40 rooms booked and 6 upgrades from standard rooms to deluxe rooms at standard room rates.  For the 2012 Sunbelt the ratio is 1/50.  In non-US locations, such complimentary rooms are not usually provided.)

*                  Room rates.  (Generally rates should be kept as low as possible to encourage attendance.  For the 2011 Sunbelt, the standard room rate was $175 and a student rate of $155 for 20% of the room block.  For the 2012 Sunbelt the rates are $169 and $149.  In the US taxes add an additional 10-15%.)

*                  Alternative housing for students (location and rates)


 4.           Meeting Space
*                  Breakout session rooms.  (Recent experience suggests 6-10 breakout session rooms per time slot are needed, each one of which should hold a minimum of 50 persons, with two or three holding 100 persons.  Additionally room for 500 persons should be available for the plenary sessions.  Banquet facilities should accommodate 200-250 persons.  In US hotels there can no charge or only a nominal charge for these facilities if sufficient rooms in the room block are booked.  For further details consult the Policies and Procedures document available from the INSNA President.)

*                  Registration area

*                  Informal gathering space.  (Ideally there is a common area where individuals can meet one another and mix during intersession breaks and transfers between sessions.)

*                  Exhibit space for concurrent poster sessions

*                  AV equipment arrangements.  (Making these arrangements through hotel services is quite expensive.  Organizers have used an outside vendor for these services at a very reasonable cost.  However, hotel management may need to agree to such services being provided by a third party as part of the contract with INSNA.)

5.            Hospitality Suite.  (An open bar hospitality suite every evening (Thursday-Saturday) from 9pm to 12am is a key Sunbelt tradition and the RFP should address how the tradition could be continued at the proposed venue.)

6.            Transportation to Meeting Venue.
*                  Airport(s) and surface transportation
*                  Approximate cost from US, Europe, Australia, Asia
7.            Amenities in Surrounding Area (including local restaurants and entertainment).

8.            Other Considerations.  (Potential organizers should be aware that there are professional conference planners who will find venues suitable for the housing and meeting needs of the meeting and will do so at no charge to the organizers.  Please contact the INSNA President for further details.)


Contact:              John Skvoretz, President
                              International Network for Social Network Analysis
                              Department of Sociology
                              University of South Florida
                              4202 E Fowler Ave CPR 107
                              Tampa, FL, USA 33620
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