Should I put on my CV papers (or "talks") that appeared in (peer-reviewed!) conferences that have no proceedings? Should I avoid duplicates if the same paper also appears in another conference (with proceedings)?

Should I make it clear that the conference has no proceedings, or just list it in the "Conferences" section? If it changes anything, my field is Computer Science.

EDIT: some conferences are peer-reviewed but have no proceedings. Call it workshops if you wish. You submit a paper, and a committee selects 30%-40 of the papers - each submission gets a slot in presenting the results during the conference/workshop, however no formal proceedings is issued.
(I'm surprised no one heard of such conferences; maybe I'm using the wrong terms; sorry for that)

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    What does it mean to say a paper "appeared" in a conference with no proceedings? The term seems confusing here, since at least to me it suggests publication or distribution of the paper. If the paper is published elsewhere, then that is how I would list it under publications in your CV, but you could (and should) also indicate somewhere that you spoke about it at this conference. That would fall under talks or presentations rather than publications. Jan 20, 2013 at 6:12
  • thanks for the comment; I hope my edit clarifies this issue
    – Ran G.
    Jan 20, 2013 at 6:18
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    Excellent question! I have attended such a conference myself in the past, and wondered if my paper can even be considered a publication because the conference made no official proceedings.
    – Paul
    Jan 20, 2013 at 8:07
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    What has worked for me is putting them under the heading: Unpublished Conference Presentations
    – user4383
    Jan 20, 2013 at 15:55

5 Answers 5


I would not put such a "paper" in the publications section. After all, there is no publication, apart from an abstract.

In my field, conferences usually do not have proceedings, and if they do, proceedings papers have very little value. Also, conference abstracts are not peer-reviewed. I've only heard of a single rejected conference abstract, and this was for political reasons.

If you have a dedicated conferences section, then I would put the "paper" there, as to not suggest that there is a publication.

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    This is spot-on, in my opinion. You have to be able to find the paper somewhere other than the authors' homepage(s) in order to claim it's published!
    – aeismail
    Jan 20, 2013 at 13:33

I assume that you're in computer science, since otherwise you probably shouldn't list any conference papers as publications. So I'll answer as a computer scientist.

No, you should not list such papers as publications in your CV, because those papers are not actually published. Moreover, there is likely an expectation that the same paper can be published at a different conference. You must not list the "same" paper at more than one conference.*

I know of several conferences/workshops like the one your describe in computational geometry (my home field), including EuroCG, the Fall Workshops, and the Young Researchers Forum at SOCG. At all three venues, submissions are lightly peer-reviewed, only a subset of submissions are accepted, and a booklet of abstracts is distributed to participants and/or on the web. But no formal proceedings is issued at these events, because it is expected that accepted papers will later appear in more polished form at a more formally reviewed conference. (Some early iterations of EuroCG did have formal proceedings, despite the expectation of later publication, but other conferences were unwilling to accept papers that appeared in those proceedings.)

As others have said, it's perfectly fine to list those talks under "Unpublished Workshop Talks", especially early in your career. You might even include the acceptance rate if you want to emphasize that the venue carries some prestige. Alternatively, if you did publish the paper elsewhere, you might include the phrase "Also presented at ..." after the publication info.

*...but journals are different. In most subfields of computer science, conferences papers can be published later in refereed journals, usually in a more expanded/complete form. Even so, I recommend listing each paper only once in your CV, including all publication venues for each paper, rather than listing the same paper once under "conference papers" and again under "journal papers".


I don't quite understand what you mean by "appeared in conferences" but have "no proceedings", but I'll chalk that up to differences between fields. I'll answer your question of whether one should add this to their CV. In my opinion, you should absolutely add it if you're a grad student or in your early career phase. If it has a DOI, you can list it under the peer reviewed section, otherwise simply list it under conferences (or the equivalent).

At this stage in your career, a CV not only conveys what you've accomplished (peer reviewed publications, awards, degrees, etc.), it also is a measure of your "scientific activity". It answers the question: "Are you someone who is capable of doing research, publishing, attending conferences and presenting your results in front of an audience of your peers simultaneously or are you someone who simply holes up in their office and publishes in solitude?". It demonstrates that you (possibly) will be someone who networks with their peers, is capable of establishing collaborations, thus broadening their research horizon, etc. It doesn't matter if you've not done these already — it gives a better impression that someone who has done nothing at all.

If you're an established researcher, you probably might not worry too much about it, as by then there are several other metrics that more reliably demonstrate your scientific worth than conference publications/abstracts/talks. Nevertheless, even they have to indulge in this cat-and-mouse game — the difference being that now they have to tout every mundane activity (membership on department committees) as somehow demonstrating their "interest" in the university's affairs.

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    I would argue that posting them on the CV might lead to misunderstandings if someone Google the paper and doesn't find any evidence that it was published somewhere. Jan 20, 2013 at 6:16
  • @Leonpalafox As I said, if it has a DOI, list it under the "peer reviewed" section (or publications) and if not, list it under "conferences" (or presentations/talks/etc.). My main point was to not leave it out entirely, but to find some place for it in the CV.
    – user5633
    Jan 20, 2013 at 16:41
  • I think OP modified the question to say that it was a workshop, in which case it probably is suited in the Workshops section Jan 21, 2013 at 9:28

In that case, the text you wrote as part of your submission is not published (except maybe in some cases in a book of abstracts distributed to participants, but it doesn't count). So, in your CV or scientific production listing, you can add an item for your talk in the “conference talks” section, but not the same as a paper.

In the fields familiar to me (physics and chemistry), it is actually very common for early and mid-career scientists to list “conference talks” in their CV. Later in the career, you may list only “invited talks”, though you should still maintain somewhere a complete list of your scientific production, which includes all conference talks.


If the conference has no proceedings, it is indeed unpublished. Usually those kind of conferences do not have any problems with you submitting the same paper to a Journal or other conference that do have proceedings.

Be sure to check with the conference regulations, and if you never did any copyright transfer, there should not be any problem at all.

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