Joint 5th Global Mental Health Summit (GMHS) and 9th National Bioethics Conference (NBC)

Forum for Medical Ethics Society with Banyan Academy of Leadership In Mental Health (BALM),Chennai ;
Centre for Mental Health Law & Policy (CMHLP), Pune and Sangath

Pre-conference events: Between Nov 15 and Dec 31, 2022
Main Conference: Saturdays, December 3 & 10, 2022 (virtual) & December 17, 2022 (Madras School of Social Work No. 32,CASA Major road,Sulaiman Zackria Avenue,Egmore,Chennai-600008,Tamil Nadu.)

Guidelines for Co-chairs for Plenaries

Sixth National Bioethics Conference on Jan 13, 14 and 15, 2017
@ YASHADA, Baner Road, Pune, MH India

The full program of the 6th National Bioethics Conference consists of 5 plenaries including an inaugural and a valedictory session. Through these plenaries about 13 invited speakers will deliver keynote addresses. The conference has scheduled 35 parallel tracks via which 62 papers will be presented and 19 workshops/symposia will be held. There will be 16 poster presentations.

You will appreciate that we want to organize all these presentations as efficient and smoothly as possible. Please read these instructions very carefully.

Session plan: Each session will be jointly steered by a pair of co-chairs. They will be responsible for introducing speakers and steering discussion, time keeping and logistics. Co-chairs are requested to connect with each other ahead of time to develop and understanding about distribution of these tasks between them.

Each plenary is of 90 minutes. Plenaries will be audio-video documented.

Three topical plenaries: There will be three keynote speakers in each of the plenary sessions. Each speaker will have up to 17 minutes to present/talk. The discussion time for these plenaries is 20 minutes at the end of all presentations. Co-chairs jointly have 10 minutes for their disposal to introduce the session, introduce the plenary speakers and comment on presentations and or theme of the plenary during the session at appropriate time using their discretions.

Prior to Your Session

  • Ensure that you have brief bio-sketches of the plenary speakers. The prints outs of the bio-sketches of the plenary speakers will be made available to you at least 1 hour before the session at the venue by the secretariat.
  • You should arrive at the conference room a few minutes prior to the start of the session
  • Concern yourself with the environment - check sound, lights, laser pointer, Power Point presentation. There will be volunteers to assist you in this process.
  • Ask all the speakers in your session to join you on stage - a few minutes before the start of your session. At that time, make needed introductions and help them feel comfortable with the room arrangements.
  • Remind the speakers about the time limits that will be imposed on them. Describe to them the method you will use to notify them when they are nearing their presentation time limit and how you will interrupt them if they have reached the end of their allotted time. (You will be provided with a cue card with a 5 minute warning).

It is up to you as the Session Co-chairs to ensure that ALL speakers receive their allotted time.

When Your Session Begins

  • You only have 5 minutes for the introduction of your session.
  • Make any announcement received from the Conference Organiser.
  • Remind the delegates to switch off their mobile phones.
  • Directly ask members of the audience if they can hear you clearly.
  • Formally announce the beginning of the session. (If needed, politely encourage the audience to settle into their seats and conclude their conversations).
  • Introduce yourselves as Session Co-chairs and give your affiliation.
  • Think about a general introduction to the plenary session. The initial opening of the session by the co-chair should briefly and clearly mention the format of the plenary [that time is allotted for discussions only after all of the presentations have been made at the end of the session and that presenters should not be interrupted with questions while presenting.]
  • Introduce each speaker at the beginning of a presentation using the bio-sketches handed over to you by the organisers.

During Each Presentation: You must keep track of elapsed time during a presentation. Signal to the speaker when his/her time is almost over. In order to keep the whole session to schedule and to allow time for questions from the audience, keeping the presentations within the allotted time is compulsory.


  • Start the discussion by announcing that the floor is now open. Suggest that audience members start off before asking a question by giving their name and affiliation; interrupt them to do so if they forget.
  • Microphones will be available in the aisles. Ask the delegates to queue up at the microphone so that their questions would be audible.
  • If there are no questions, the session chair should have one or two questions ready to ask to get the ball rolling.

Closing the Session: When the last speaker's presentation and the Discussion (questions/answers) have concluded, THANK the audience for attending the session and their participation and speakers/presenters for presenting their work.

State that the plenary session is now completed.

Thank you in advance for your cooperation and for your willingness to be a Plenary Session Co-chair!

Kind regards,
Conference Co-ordination Committee, 6th NBC