PACIS Site Selection

PACIS Site Selection Procedures

The purpose of this document is to provide potential PACIS bidders with information on the bid process. While there are many components of PACIS that are the direct responsibility of the Conference Committee, there are many aspects that must adhere to the respective practices that are described in this document. Running a large conference such as PACIS is complex, and the experience from previous chairs and administrators embedded in this document should be leveraged. The opportunity to give the community a valuable learning event as well as the occasion to share the advantages of your chosen location should be considered an honor, while at the same time be a rewarding experience for the entire Conference Committee.

The Pacific-Asia Conference on Information Systems (PACIS) is an annual research conference in the information systems discipline held in the Pacific-Asia Region. Since the first PACIS held in Kaohsiung, Taiwan in 1993, the conference has been growing from less than 100 attendees to more than 500 in both 2013 and 2014. The attendees are principally from the Pacific-Asia Region but increasingly from other regions of the world. It is one of the three regional conferences under the auspices of the Association for Information Systems (AIS).

Depending on which city holds the conference, PACIS is held either in June or July each year. An opening reception is typically held on the first evening of the conference, and a social event is held on the last evening of the conference. In addition to over 20 parallel paper sessions, a number of other events have traditionally been scheduled in conjunction with or as part of PACIS, including:

  • Doctoral Consortium: Provides an opportunity for doctoral students in the Pacific-Asia Region to receive guidance from prominent academics.

  • Keynote Speakers: Provide opportunities for attendees to hear recognized academic or practitioner leaders.

  • Panels: Offer facilitated discussion groups comprised of academic and/or practitioner leaders.

  • Workshops: Provide tutorials on new and innovative ideas in research and teaching.

  • Other innovative ideas are welcome.

The AIS Region 3 Board (formerly known as PACIS Executive Committee) holds its board meetings twice each year, one in summer during PACIS and another one in winter during ICIS. Ideally, in its summer meeting each year, the Board considers the recommendations from the PACIS Site Advisory Committee (SAC) and selects one Bid Committee from among those biddings three years in advance of the date of each Conference (i.e., bids for PACIS in year X will be considered in year X-3) by following the PACIS Site Selection Procedures detailed in this document.

The PACIS Site Advisory Committee (SAC) solicits bids to host PACIS, assists Bid Committees in developing bids, and advises the AIS Region 3 Board on the merits of each bid. It is comprised of the following four individuals:

  • AIS Council Region 3 Representative (Chair)

  • Immediate Past AIS Council Region 3 Representative

  • Immediate Past Conference Chair or one of the Past Conference Co-Chairs of PACIS held in previous year

  • Immediate Past Program Chair or one of the Past Program Co-Chairs of PACIS held in previous year

If any of the individuals listed above are ineligible or decline to be members of the SAC, the AIS Region 3 Representative will appoint a replacement with the experience and expertise to provide high-quality advice and feedback to Bid Committees and the AIS Region 3 Board.

A SAC member may not be directly or indirectly associated with any bid being considered by SAC. A SAC or AIS Region 3 Board member may not accept any gifts, benefits, or other considerations from any party in connection with any bid being considered.

The SAC has three main responsibilities:

  1. The SAC has the responsibility of soliciting bids for PACIS. The Chair of SAC will coordinate the efforts of the members of SAC in soliciting bids. Members of SAC will contact individuals who might be interested in forming Bid Committees and will invite them to bid. Individuals not contacted by the SAC are encouraged to bid but should contact the SAC Chair for advice on bidding.

  2. The SAC has the responsibility of assisting Bid Committees in preparing and revising bids. Prior to bid deadlines, Bid Committees are encouraged to contact the SAC with questions about bidding. During the bid process, the SAC will provide feedback to Bid Committees as outlined in the schedule below.

  3. The SAC has the responsibility of advising the AIS Region 3 Board on the strengths and weaknesses of each bid as outlined in the schedule below.

In essence, the main role of the SAC is to manage the site selection process and to recommend a best site to the AIS Region 3 Board, while the main role of the AIS Region 3 Board is to make a final decision based on the recommendation of the SAC.

The following schedule for submitting bids and selecting the site to host PACIS in year X will be followed in year X-3 unless modified by the SAC Chair:

  • By 1 March: SAC solicits Preliminary Bids for PACIS.

  • By 1 May: Bid Chairs prepare a Preliminary Bid and send it as an email attachment to the SAC Chair. The Preliminary Bid must be in Word or pdf format.

  • By 15 May: SAC assesses each Preliminary Bid and the SAC Chair provides Bid Chairs with feedback and bid changes requested. SAC Chair sends Preliminary Bids to all members of SAC, which then selects zero, one, or two bids whose Bid Committees will be invited to prepare and present a Full Bid at the summer meeting of the AIS Region 3 Board Meeting. The SAC Chair provides Bid Chairs with feedback on their bids. Each Bid Chair is informed as to whether or not they are shortlisted for submitting a Full Bid. If no sites are selected to prepare Full Bids, the SAC will open the process to new bids and prepare a schedule for reviewing them.

  • By 31 May: Bid Chairs send Full Bids as an email attachment to the SAC Chair. The Full Bid must be in Word or pdf format

  • By 5 June: SAC Chair sends Full Bids to the members of AIS Region 3 Board.

  • At the summer meeting of AIS Region 3 Board Meeting (usually held during PACIS) in year X-3 for conferences in year X: Invited Bid Chairs present their Bids to the Board. Fifteen minutes maximum is allowed for the presentation with a question period of no more than 10 minutes. The Board selects one Bid as the conference site for PACIS in year X. If no bids are considered acceptable, the Board will defer its decision until acceptable bids are received. In this case the SAC will open the process to new bids and prepare a schedule for reviewing them.

The Preliminary Bid shall not exceed two pages and shall include the following:

  • The site (city) proposed, including brief comments explaining why the city will provide an attractive setting for the conference.

  • The proposed dates for the conference.

  • Proposed Conference Chair (or Co-chairs) and Program Chair (or Co-chairs). For these chairpersons list significant AIS, PACIS, ICIS, or other major Information Systems conference leadership or organizational experiences.

  • A summary of the Bid Committee's ideas for improving PACIS from the perspective of the participant. What is it about your team, your institutions, your industry connections, your program plans, your keynote speaker criteria, your panel ideas, your social event ideas, your pre-conference event ideas or any other aspect of your vision for the conference that will make this PACIS special?  Ideas for enhancing the intellectual stimulation and networking opportunities that PACIS submitters, reviewers and attendees will experience are strongly encouraged to be described here. The key is the assist the AIS Region 3 Board to understand how you would envision making this conference successful.

  • Facilities. A brief description of the hotels and/or conference centers where the meeting may be held, with brief comments with respect to how the available option(s) would provide an attractive setting for the conference.

For more detail on the above, see the Full Bid section, which follows.

The SAC will consider the following criteria in evaluating a Preliminary Bid:

  1. The Bid Committee: The experience of the conference and program chairs, their commitment to AIS and PACIS, the diversity of the team.

  2. The Bid Committee's Ideas: The novelty and relevance of the team's ideas for improving the PACIS experience for all stakeholders.

  3. The facility: The desirability of the proposed hotel(s) or hotel/conference center combinations.

  4. The site (city): The desirability of the site for attracting attendees, and the geographic location of the site. Returning to a popular city, after other cities in Region 3 have been visited, is not precluded.

The Full Bid will describe, explain, and provide details in support of the main elements listed below. A Full Bid may also include details on other bid-related matters that the Bid Committee feels will help the AIS Region 3 Board reach a decision.

The Full Bid (including an executive summary) must not exceed 20 pages (A4 size) including appendices. Bid leader contact details (e-mail, phone numbers, mailing address) should be included.

The Full Bid should include the following elements:

Conference Site

The conference site (city or other location) should be described in sufficient detail so that the desirability of the site can be assessed by those who are not familiar with it. Information about the site may include a short "promotional” description. Information about amenities that may be of interest to attendees (restaurants, night life, attractions, etc.) should be given. Pointers to major attractions, tourist sites, etc., may be included. Location of major airport(s) relative to the site must be given and transportation options from the airport(s) to the site should be explained.

Conference Dates

Proposed dates of the conference and ancillary meetings, if any, should be given. Any known conflicts with other conferences and meetings (e.g., CSWIM, TSWIM) should be identified.

Conference Committee

All conference chairs should be listed along with details of their prior experience with conferences administration. At a minimum, the following conference chairs must be identified:

  • Conference Chair(s)

  • Program Chair(s)

  • Doctoral Consortium Chair(s)

Other conference committee members may also be identified.

The Bid need only "sketch" the experience of each member of the proposed Conference Committee. A paragraph on each emphasizing significant conference administrative involvements, especially those which include PACIS, will suffice. The leadership experience of the Conference Chair(s) and the scholarly accomplishments of the Program Chair(s) and Doctoral Consortium Chairs are also relevant.

The quality of the Conference Committee proposed in support of the bid is a critical factor in securing a favorable result. The Conference Chair, Program Chair, and Doctoral Consortium Chair should have extensive prior experience with conferences, ideally PACIS, in some administrative or organizing capacity. As a group, they should be able to demonstrate experience with, interest in, and a commitment to PACIS. Committee positions such as Honorary Chair, or Advisory Committee may be included but the role of individuals in these positions should be explained in the bid document.

Where two or more persons share a position, they will be known as Co-Chairs. Each will assume all responsibilities and obligations of the position. If a bid has Conference Co-Chairs, one must agree to serve as Chair of the AIS Region 3 Board and members on future SAC committees if the bid is successful.

The Conference Chair assumes the important responsibility of ensuring that every member of the Bid Committee understands and accepts their responsibilities as a member of the Conference Committee, should their Full Bid be accepted, and subsequent responsibilities.

The Program Chair must be an established scholar in the discipline and be capable of judging the quality of scholarship in a broad range of relevant topics. The Program Chair must be willing and able to build a Program Committee that draws strongly on the scholarly information systems community. Similarly, the Program Chair (or one of the Program Co-Chairs) must be willing to serve on the PACIS SAC in the year following their conference.

The Doctoral Consortium Chair must be an established scholar in the discipline and be capable of attracting and organizing a highly-competent consortium faculty with experience advising PhD students. Ideally, the Chair will have served as a consortium faculty member previously and be well-acquainted with the objectives and consortium process.

The right of the Conference Chair to choose the makeup of her/his Conference Committee is acknowledged. However, each Program Chair can strengthen PACIS by agreeing to provide training for the Program Chair of the conference for the year following their own conference. This may be achieved by inviting the Program Chair for the year following to serve as a track chair. Program Chairs can also learn the process by serving as a reviewer for PACIS in the years leading up to their conference. This vital form of "knowledge transfer” will help ensure that each Program Committee is knowledgeable regarding peer-review procedures and they are ready to assume this very important function.

The right of the Doctoral Consortium Chair to choose her/his Consortium faculty members is acknowledged. However, for the reason explained in the previous paragraph, the Doctoral Consortium Chair should provide experience and training for the Doctoral Consortium Chair for the year following by inviting that Chair to serve as a member of their Consortium faculty.

The hotel and conference facilities should be described in sufficient detail so that bid evaluators can visualize the conference experience. The number of hotel rooms in each hotel option should be given. To accommodate attendees on a limited budget, conference organizers should include in the bid a few nearby low cost hotels. Images of conference facility layouts should be included. If all facilities (hotel rooms and conference facilities) are in one hotel, this should be made clear. If multiple hotels are needed to accommodate expected attendance, the distance between the hotels and the conference facility should be given and any transportation requirements (e.g., shuttle bus) should be explained. If a conference center is proposed, the distance between the hotel option(s) and the conference center should be given. If conference facility must be rented, then the rental cost must be given. A map indicating the location of all options (hotels and conference facilities) should be provided.

Any innovations in the design of the Doctoral Consortium that will enhance its value to participants should be described in detail. The location, description, capacity, and rental cost of at least one Doctoral Consortium site must be given.

The Doctoral Consortium may be held in the conference hotel or in another facility removed from the conference hotel. If removed from the hotel, transportation to and from the hotel should be explained. Approximately 20-25 students and 10 faculty mentors will attend. The Doctoral Consortium is no more than one day long, usually starting the day before the conference with an informal dinner but definitely ending before paper sessions begin.

The nature of the conference experience that the Bid Committee envisions should be described. Given the very long lead time, the Full Bid need not propose a theme – which may be chosen a year or two prior to the conference. But the full bid should elaborate on the proposal of the Conference Committee for improving the experience of all PACIS stakeholders -- submitting authors, those who review or otherwise contribute to the selection of submissions, and all attendees. How can this PACIS be more intellectually stimulating and provide a better networking experience for everyone?

The Bid Committee should examine all programmatic elements of recent conferences and seek advice from previous Conference Committees on the strengths and weaknesses of various program options such as tracks, panels, keynote speakers, poster sessions, roundtables, pre- and post-conference workshops, receptions, social events and the like.

Program Chairs have some latitude in choosing the format for the conference scholarly program but must receive approval from the AIS Region 3 Board for any major changes from the traditional design. The AIS Region 3 Board’s concern will be to evaluate whether the proposed program format is likely to attract attendees and whether it is likely to result in high-quality research and a diverse program being presented.

Estimates of attendance will be provided by the Secretary of the AIS Region 3 Board based on history. However, any unusual factors that may affect attendance (positively or negatively) should be described. These could include, for example, a location that is particularly attractive and thus likely to attract a large attendance or a known conflict with another conference that may draw attendees away from PACIS.

A pro forma budget must be developed and included in the Full Bid based on a template provided by the Secretary of the AIS Region 3 Board. The template will include both expected revenues and costs. Expected sponsorship revenue should be included in the pro forma budget only if sponsors provide a letter of provisional support, or if sponsorship for similar conferences is the norm, or under similar circumstances. If sponsorship is expected to cover specific costs, then both those costs and the corresponding sponsorship revenue should be included in the budget. Any unusual factors that may affect either revenue or expense in the budget must also be described. These could include, for example, significant revenue expected from an associated event, a plan for a particularly expensive but desirable social event, additional transportation charges between hotels and conference facilities, or a donation of facilities or equipment. Normally, particularly expensive options will need to be covered by sponsorships.

The Full Bid should describe the Bid Committee’s plans for soliciting sponsorship for the conference. Likely sponsors should be described. Any committed sponsors should be identified. Sponsorship could be in monetary or in-kind gifts.

One or more options for the social event should be described. This social event is normally held on the night of the last day of the conference. It is a time for attendees to interact in a relaxed atmosphere. The social event should be planned to provide for maximum attendee interaction in an atmosphere that showcases the location of the conference. Facilities that are broken up and distributed are less desirable than spaces where it is easy for attendees to meet each other. Long performances that interfere with attendee socializing should be avoided. The location should be convenient to the hotels. The cost is a function of the respective budget and often driven by sponsorship revenue.

The AIS Region 3 Board will consider the following criteria in evaluating a Full Bid:

  1. The Conference Committee: The experience of the chairs relative to their roles, their commitment to AIS and PACIS, the diversity of the Conference Committee.

  2. Conference program elements: The proposed program innovations and the likelihood that the program will draw a large number of attendees, stimulate stakeholder learning, and afford networking opportunities.

  3. The site (city): The desirability of the site for attracting attendees and the geographic location of the site.

  4. The conference facilities: The proposed hotel(s) or hotel/conference center combinations; the proposed sites for the Doctoral Consortium, the ancillary meetings (if any), and any special program events (if any).

  5. Financial factors: Any financial factors, including budget considerations and sponsorship plans that are likely to affect the conference.

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