The goal of this initiative is to help conferences reach out beyond the usual research papers that present completed work and to seek out papers that present ideas and visions that can stimulate the research community to pursue new directions.
Papers in a “Blue Sky Ideas” track should be open-ended, possibly “outrageous” or “wacky”, and present new problems, new application domains, or new methodologies that are likely to stimulate significant new research.
Conferences may request CCC sponsorship of such tracks along with a CCC grant that provides prize money for the top 3 papers (first prize $1000, second prize $750, and third prize $500), to be awarded as travel grants. (See below for details about selecting and awarding these prizes.)
To Request a Blue Sky Idea Conference Track:
Short proposals for CCC sponsorship should include information on the conference, a proposed list of program committee members for the track and a timeline. See below for a prototype call for papers and suggestions regarding the review process. These proposals should be sent to the CCC, at email@example.com. Please reach out to us before your papers have been selected.
Program Committee Guidelines
Note that these are guidelines and the host conference should make a final decision in a way that is compatible with the goals and culture of the conference.
Papers for the Blue Sky Ideas Track should be reviewed by a PC separate from the main conference PC.
The PC should consist of 5 or 6 senior researchers with a broad perspective of the field.
Since this track usually gets fewer submissions than the regular conference tracks and since the papers are short, it is recommended that the entire PC read every submission and hold a teleconference to discuss to top-rated papers.
The nature of papers for this track makes asynchronous commenting less productive than a spirited discussion.
Prototype Call for Papers: Blue Sky Ideas Track
In cooperation with the Computing Community Consortium (CCC), invites submissions to a special “Blue Sky Ideas” track. The emphasis of this track will be on visionary ideas, long term challenges, and opportunities inresearch that are outside of the current mainstream topics of the field.
Submissions will be judged on the extent to which they expand the possibilities and horizons of the field or challenge existing assumptions prevalent in the field.
Submissions to this track should follow the same formatting guidelines as submissions to the research track, but are limited to at most FOUR pages in length for both submission and final publication. Accepted papers will be published in the conference proceedings and on the web.
To encourage researchers to present truly visionary concepts, the CCC is offering prizes for up to 3 top papers in this special track: first prize $1000, second prize $750, and third prize $500, to be awarded as travel grants.
Winner Selection Guidelines
Selections of winners can be done as part of the review process or done at the conference. Deferring selection to the conference creates a strong incentive for authors to prepare a compelling presentation. Selection at the conference can by done by the committee or by audience ranking. This choice is left to the discretion of the program committee and may be guided by such factors as the degree of conflicts-of-interest on the committee and the practicality of audience balloting.
CCC awards are subject to the current reimbursement rules of the Computing Research Association. The committee should provide the names and email addresses of the winners to the CCC Director who will then inform the winners of the reimbursement rules. Division of the prize money among co-authors is to be determined among the co-authors themselves.
Upon selection of a Research Visions and Challenges Track, the program committee will be asked to coordinate with a member of the CCC Council, who will be selected to serve as a liaison to the conference. The CCC liaison will serve as either a member or ex-officio member of the program committee (as specified by the CCC on a case-by-case basis) and will review award selection plans, provide input should any questions arise, and assist in preparation of a post-session report, etc.