Reflexivity Statement & FAQs

NNN 2022 - Reflexivity Statement

In 2019, following a thorough and fair review process of various hosts and organisations, the NNN Executive Committee selected Kathmandu as the venue for the next conference in 2020. Following the lifting of restrictions related to the COVID-19 pandemic, which allowed us to consider resuming in-person meetings,  we decided to maintain Kathmandu as the original venue for the 2022 hybrid conference. We realise that a decision to host an in-person conference must contend with the following issues such as access, travel equity, internet bandwidth, geographic representation, and delegate representation. 

Our decision to go hybrid aims to facilitate  accessibility for  those who are unable to travel to Kathmandu or attend in-person events at this time. Some members are mindful of environmental costs associated with intercontinental travel while others prefer virtual environments for health reasons. We are mindful of these considerations, and our decision to host an in-person event weighed the pros of in-person connection, networking, sharing, and learning, with the downsides associated with travel costs. We are eager to see how the hybrid components work with the in-person components and will adjust our plans for the future from what we learn in 2022. 

We are increasingly mindful of who gets to speak about what to whom at our events. Our workshop submission criteria requested that workshop organisers strive for gender, racial, geographic, and subject matter diversity in their choice of speakers and panellists. Similarly, we  embed similar principles of inclusion and diverse representation in our choices of panellists for plenaries, ensuring an equitable balance of gender, racial, geographic, and subject matter diversity. 

Finally, our conference planning committee is the most diverse yet – we have volunteers representing members from West and East Africa, South and Southeast Asia, Western Europe, Australasia, and North America. 

In future years, we are eager to explore considerations for regional conferences, mindful of course of additional cost considerations. We believe that a regional approach will allow us to build and strengthen intra-regional cooperation between NTD NGOs, foster connections with domestic NGOs, and address context-specific challenges and successes that may not always receive the attention they deserve in pan-global conferences. 

NNN Executive Committee 2021-2022

NNN Conference 2022 FAQs

Why is the conference taking place in Kathmandu?

In 2019, Kathmandu was identified as the venue for the NNN conference in 2020 after a thorough review and selection process of several proposals. However, owing to the emergence of the COVID-19 pandemic, we hosted two successive virtual conferences in 2020 and 2021. In early 2022, we made the decision to host a hybrid conference in Kathmandu, thereby honouring our 2019 commitment. Hosting our conference in Kathmandu allows us the opportunity to shine a light on the successes with NTD elimination in Southeast Asia, celebrate national government partners, and increase our engagement with the NTD community of practitioners in the region.

Why did the NNN decide on a hybrid conference in 2022?

We made the decision to host a hybrid conference in 2022 based on the feedback we received from the NNN community via a survey that we conducted in early 2022. The majority of the survey respondents expressed an interest in participating in an in-person conference and also suggested that a virtual component would address issues around access. This will be our first time hosting a hybrid conference at this scale and we are building the ship as we are sailing it! 

A hybrid conference is generally twice the cost of running a 100% virtual-only conference or a 100% in-person conference. The increased costs are associated with paying for a virtual platform and production teams.

What does the virtual component of the 2022 conference look like?

Virtual and in-person participants will have access to a virtual meeting platform that will allow all participants access to streamed events such as the plenary events on opening and closing days. 

We have staggered the event start time to later in the afternoon in Kathmandu so that virtual participants in Europe, Africa, North and South America can participate virtually during working hours in their respective time zones. 

We realise that the meeting times for the NNN’s disease-specific and cross-cutting groups may not be conducive for all virtual participants as these meetings are likely to be held in the morning hours in Kathmandu. We are thankful to virtual participants who are able to join these meetings outside of normal work hours.

Will the conference workshops be participatory for virtual participants?

Yes. We are working to ensure that the virtual component of the conference workshops can allow for robust virtual participation. We have also requested all workshop organisers to be mindful of engaging virtual participants in a meaningful way and providing guidance to support this. If you have ideas or experiences from other hybrid conferences, please do admin [at] nnnevents [dot] com (share with us).

How did you decide on the final workshop selection?

We invited workshop submissions that met the following criteria:

  • Relevance to multiple NTDs: the workshop should provide learning relevant to multiple NTDs; disease specific workshops and presentations should be framed explicitly to enable lessons to be applied to other diseases.
  • Clear objectives: the proposal should have clear learning objectives and demonstrate how the structure of the workshop will achieve those objectives.
  • Quality of proposal: the proposal should include a clear background on the issue/s to be discussed, rationale for conducting a workshop (including how the workshop will build on previous discussions), and explanation on how the workshop conclusions will be followed up by the organisers.
  • Interaction and participation: the workshop should be structured to encourage a broad range of audience participation. Workshops containing only presentations or panels with no audience interaction are less likely to be selected. Given the format of the conference will be hybrid, innovative approaches to elicit participation in this context are required. The workshop proposal needs to clearly indicate what methods and/or tools will be used to engage audiences both in person and online, including what consideration will be made to ensure active participation throughout.
  • Diversity of speakers/facilitators/panellists: the workshop should involve a range of participants across multiple organisations, including speakers from NTD programme countries; across genders; or persons affected by NTDs. Proposals that do not include a wide range of representation across these criteria will not be considered.
  • In-person workshop leader: the workshop must be facilitated by at least one person who will be in attendance in-person in Kathmandu, Nepal. In addition, it is strongly recommended for the Workshop Lead to attend in-person.

We were delighted with the response and completed a thorough Workshop Review Process where each of the 53 submissions received 3 blind reviews from 39 volunteer reviewers. Over 90% of the reviewers were from countries with active programmes for NTDs. The recommendations of the reviewers received a final review from the NNN conference and steering committee to ensure that the selected workshops and rapid fire sessions are representative of the various NTD programmes, cross-cutting and disease specific issues.

Will there be language interpretation at the conference?

We are able to provide Nepali interpretation on all three days of the conference across all programmes. We are working with workshop organisers to identify other language interpretation needs and will provide the organisers the option to hire interpreters using equipment that NNN will have available.

Is it possible to book a meeting room for a small, informal meeting during the conference?

A limited number of 1-hour meeting slots are available outside of the main conference programme hours between 9-11H for in-person meetings in Kathmandu If a room is not being used within the programme, it can be booked at no cost but MYT/NNN do not offer any additional support (the room will be set up with projector screen and projector).  Any refreshments could be arranged directly with the venue or via MYT but the costs would need to be covered by the group using the meeting room.  Please contact admin [at] nnnevents [dot] com  to submit your request.

Is it possible to arrange a side meeting or event outside of the conference programme and extend the invitation to NNN Conference attendees?

Please send a request for a side event / meeting room via the admin [at] nnnevents [dot] com email address and complete this form (ADD) that specifies:

  • Title of meeting
  • Short overview 
  • # of attendees
  • Whether it would be open / invite only 
  • Time required / suggested date
  • Refreshment requirements
  • AV requirements

Once we have the details, MYT will forward to the Conference Committee for their input with regards to how it fits with the programme, sponsorship opportunities etc.  Depending on their feedback, MYT can then liaise with the venue to let you know options and costs to include any additional MYT support.

Can you pay for my travel to Kathmandu?

Unfortunately, we are unable to sponsor travel to Kathmandu. The NNN annual conference costs are met through annual appeals to the NNN members to sponsor the conference which covers the costs related to operations, events management, communication, and delegate management. This is a recurring annual exercise focused almost entirely on the conference and does not allow us the opportunity to maintain discretionary funding to sponsor the travel of delegates.
We hope that the virtual option will allow those who are unable to travel the opportunity to connect and engage with the conference delegates, even if virtual.

Do I need a visa to travel to Kathmandu?

All travel related information can be found on our Kathmandu venue information page.

What are the COVID-19 protocols to be observed during the conference?

The best and most up to date information regarding the COVID-19 protocols in Nepal during the NNN Conference will be detailed in the Delegate Pack, which is due to be released in the coming weeks.