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I will try to make my question as understandable as possibe.

In the course of a project I belong to as a consortium member, I did research on a particular topic and submitted my findings in form of a conference paper.

The paper got accepted after double-blind review. The final version of the paper (not anonymized anymore) is already submitted. Final submission deadline is already closed.

All I can do for now is wait until the conference starts in 3 months, so I can present my paper at this conference and the paper will be published in the conference proceedings.

Now to the actual part of the question:

The project I'm working in hasn't published any research (besides papers from the consortium members) yet.

As the project is funded by the government, public dissemination activities are obligatory.

Thus, a public webinar-series will be scheduled in about 1 month, where I will also have to present my research findings. The same findings that are subject to the conference paper I already submitted but which will be published in 3 months.

The conference guideline states that the work submitted must be original, unpublished work. Both criteria were met at the final submission deadline.

But now that the webinar-series (which will be recorded and published on YT) will take place before I'm able to present my paper at the conference and before my paper will be published in the conference proceedings, do I violate this rule (original, unpublished) by presenting my research at this webinar?

What I will do of course is to refer to the forthcoming publication in my webinar presentation, so that it is clear that the research I'm presenting is part of said paper which will be first published (at least in form of a manuscript) at said conference 3 months in the future.

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  • Are there two different conferences here?
    – Buffy
    May 10, 2023 at 11:59
  • Why is it not possible to A) wait with the webinar until the conference is over? B) not use your results for the webinar - a conference publication is also dissemination, after all.
    – Sursula
    May 10, 2023 at 11:59
  • And have you asked the conference organizers about it? They might not object if the webinar doesn't go much into detail and rather prepares the issue for a lay audience rather than topic experts visting a conference
    – Sursula
    May 10, 2023 at 12:01
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    I think the "public dissemination" activity required by the government funding agency is intended to address a broader audience, more of an outreach activity. In Austria, for example "science to public" is now a big thing (and one more box to tick). May 10, 2023 at 12:21
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    @Sursula The date is fixed and it is not possible to wait with the webinar (it's out of my control). My results are or at least my argumentation is somewhat necessary for the webinar series, as it is part of the overall project story to be told. The only thing I can do is to focus more on the problem and and less on my final findings/methods/results to just raise awareness regarding the importance of the matter and to adress a broader audience... So I could keep my findings for the conference May 10, 2023 at 16:49

1 Answer 1

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I assume that you are in a field where conferences are the main publication venues (and not mainly settings to network and discuss work in progress). I also assume that the "webinar" for "public dissemination" targets a different audience than the conference presentation.*

Only the conference convenors can tell you with authority what they count as an original publication. My strong hunch is that presentations without any written trace are not considered as previous publications. By contrast, conference proceedings, journal articles, book chapters, technical reports, and preprints all are written publications -- although many (most?) conferences do allow preprints.

You probably should not rehash the exact same material anyway, if only because your audiences are different. A generalist audience wants to see the big picture and some interesting stories. The specialist audience wants the theoretical contribution, the methods, and all the technical details.

To be on the safe side, ask the convenors. Think about how you will adjust the framing around the presentation material to address each specific audience. In your inquiry, briefly explain how the webinar differs from the conference, that the results are recorded but not published in writing, and how, as a result, the substance will overlap without being identical.

* Caveat: I work in a field where conferences are not publication venues.

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