Call for Doctoral Symposium


An important aspect of doctoral research is that you can explain your work well to academics who are not necessarily experts in your field of research. For this symposium we challenge students to effectively write a brief introduction to their research that could serve as a basis for the first chapter of their thesis.


A submission consists of three documents:

1- Extended abstract

We expect that a student writes a (singly authored) extended abstract of at most 4 pages, including:

  • A clear description of the problem being addressed and what makes that problem interesting and relevant such that it warrants scientific research.
  • A brief description of what others have been doing in the field.
  • A hint of a possible solution and the path chosen how to get to that solution (i.e., the chosen research methodology). We emphasize that the symposium is not intended for publishing yet another paper on your work. The abstracts must comply with the guidelines as stated on the DEBS general submission page.

2- Recommendation letter

If the abstract does not comply with what one could reasonably expect for an introductory chapter, it will be rejected without further ado. To this end, we also ask for a reference letter from your advisor stating at least:

  • Your status as a PhD student, including the starting date.
  • The expected time before completing your research.
  • Approval of the submitted extended abstract.

3- Presentation slides

If your abstract is accepted, it will be published online. Most important, however, is that you prepare a 10-minute presentation explicitly targeted toward the same audience as the abstract: academics, but possibly from very different fields of computer science or informatics. For this reason, we also ask you to prepare a presentation and provide us with a set of (tentative) slides as part of the overall submission.


Preference will be given to students who are about at the middle of their PhD studies. Those students who are close to completion of their work are encouraged to submit a paper to the main conference.

Submission deadlines and other important dates can be found here.

Questions about submissions to the doctoral symposium can be sent to the DEBS 2015 doctoral symposium chairs: Maarten van Steen, Anders Andersen.