Organizing your session


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Organizing your session
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  • GENERAL INFORMATION: Each regular session will be held on WTO premises and will be granted a strictly monitored two hour time slot. Interpreters will be present at each session and ensure that they are translated in all of the WTO official languages (English, French and Spanish).

  • ORGANIZATION OF SESSIONS: Please recall that it is highly recommended that four speakers and one moderator participate in two hour slot sessions. Each speaker should prepare a 5 to 8 min. introductory statement, after which the session should be opened to comments and questions from the audience. Speakers are encouraged to make concise and dynamic presentations.

  • MEETING ROOMS: Parallel sessions will be operating throughout the length of the Public Forum following Registration and the Opening Ceremony on 19 September. Simultaneous interpretation of all Forum sessions will be provided in the WTO's three official languages — English, French and Spanish. The general location and total capacity of each meeting room is outlined below.








New Building

Ground Floor

Main Building

3 rd Floor

Main Building

3 rd Floor

Main Building

South Courtyard

Total Capacity






  • PRESENTATION FACILITIES: These sessions are designed to function as lively and interactive discussions and although we will accommodate PowerPoint presentations, we highly discourage their use. However, if you consider them absolutely necessary we urge you to keep the number of slides to a minimum and to project key points and figures. We can, however, post a more detailed outline or PowerPoint text on the Forum website in advance of your session, if received in due time. Please send such documents as soon as they are available or no later than Friday 16 September to [email protected]. These will also help WTO interpreters prepare for your session.

  • THE ROLE OF THE MODERATOR: Please advise your moderator to structure the session as follows:

  • Introduce the session (5mins) — outline theme, topic and main discussion points.

  • Invite each speaker to present their case (5 to 8mins each). It is essential that speakers finish within the allotted time.

  • Invite questions/comments from the panellists in response to these statements.

  • Open the session to questions/comments from the audience.

  • Offer concluding remarks (5mins) — highlight key points that emerged during discussion. (Do not summarise the session).

NOTE: All sessions will be stopped at the end of the two hour time limit. Good timekeeping is necessary to facilitate a truly interactive discussion.

Moderators can encourage such discussion by commenting on the content of the presentations and posing follow-up questions to the audience. They should remind speakers from the floor to introduce themselves and to limit their statements to brief comments or questions. In sum, it is the moderator's role to make the session as balanced, lively and interactive as possible.

  • INFORMATION FOR THE PROGRAMME: Please provide an abstract of up to 250 words outlining the main objective(s) of the session, the relevant questions to be addressed and the final list of confirmed speakers. This will be copy-edited and posted within the Public Forum programme on the WTO web site in advance of the event. Please send your summary in a word document as early as possible and no later than Friday, 29 July to the e-mail address: [email protected] indicating “Abstract” and specifying the number of sessions in the subject heading.

  • SUMMARIES OF THE 2011 PUBLIC FORUM SESSIONS: All organizers are required to provide a summary of their session within three weeks of the event so that they can be posted on the WTO website.

    Please bear in mind the following guidelines when preparing a summary of your session:

CONTENT: We urge organizers of sessions to ensure that each report is organized in the following manner:

  • Title of session

  • Writer of report (indicating job title and organization)

  • Summary: Please provide a short overview of the session including the main objective(s) of the session and the relevant questions that were addressed. This should be no more than 250 words.

  • Presentations by the panellists: Brief summary of the main points raised by each panellist.

  • Questions and comments by the audience: A selection of some of the questions/comments following the presentations.

  • Conclusion: Short description of how the panellists concluded the session.

WORD COUNT: Up to 2,000 words. Due to space limitations, it will not be possible to accept contributions longer than this.

DEADLINE: Please send your detailed summary in a word document at the latest by Friday 14 October 2011 to the e-mail address: [email protected] indicating “Final Report” and specifying the number of sessions in the subject heading. All summary reports received by the deadline will be edited, translated and included in the 2011 Public Forum Publication.

WEBSITE: Once your contribution has been copy-edited, it will be posted within the Public Forum programme on the WTO web site. When all contributions have been received, these will be compiled into an electronic publication and posted on the website.

  • PERSONAL BELONGINGS: Please remind audience members not to leave any personal belongings in the meeting rooms at the end of the day. All rooms will be locked after closing hours.

  • FORUM RECEPTION: All Forum participants are kindly invited to a reception to be held in the CR Lobby on Monday, 19 September from 6:15 pm to 8:15 pm.

  • PROGRAMME: A version of the Public Forum Programme is available on the Forum webpage.

  • E-FORUM: Please note that an E-Forum will be set up to discuss the topics that will be addressed during the Forum in September.