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Have you ever wondered how the ETC programme comes together? No? Well you’re probably already involved in a Programme Committee (PC) then.

For those that have wondered, or perhaps not given it much thought, it’s a well-oiled machine comprising of 11 committees that review between 400-500 abstracts between them. Each committee is made up of anywhere from 6-30 AET members who help review, score, accept/decline and categorise abstracts into suitable sessions for the European Transport Conference

The final planning then culminates with the annual in-person meeting of the PC Chairs to arrange the accepted abstracts into a 3-day conference programme.

Simple eh? Not really!

Several papers can fall into several streams and there are only so many papers that can be in one session. What goes on in this meeting is a tightly kept secret but those in 'the know' would tell you that there’s a little bit of friendly competition between the Chairs to beg, borrow, steal(?) abstracts from one committee to another in order to make the best program possible. They also discuss what worked well and not so well from previous years and look at plenaries, workshops and panel options. 

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This year, the PC Chair meeting (above) was held on the 8th May, 2024 and was very kindly hosted by Antwerp University who will also be hosting the ETC in September 2024 and 2025 (bookings now open). All 11 Programme Committees were represented by their Chairs or delegates who battled it out to create a very full and interesting ETC programme. More on that to come! 

Interested in joining a Programme Committee? Please see more about them on the AET website. Individual members can apply to join directly, whereas organisational members should contact their representative to check their committee allocation availability.