At the 30th International Symposium  on Chromatography which took place September 14-18 in Salzburg, Austria I had the priviledge to chair a group of peers who volunteered to help select the best posters presented. Close to 600 posters were presented at the symposium of which 286 have opted to compete for the award. The Best Poster Award competition was sponsored by Genzo Shimadzu and consisted of eight 500€ grants. So it was my task to reduce the group of 286 to the eight best contributions. Banner ISC2014

The poster presentations were sorted into 18 session topics by the organizers and remained on display Monday through Wednesday. Each author was requested to be present at her/his poster on one of those days. The whole set of poster presentations was divided into 16 groups. Each group was reviewed by two experts. These experts were asked to nominate one contribution from their assignment as a candidate for the final round evaluation.

The process worked out very well. One group of reviewers felt that there was no contribution good enough to be considered for final round evaluation so 15 poster presenters made it to the final round. As a new approach to select the final awardees, the organizers have agreed with me, that in the final round evaluation the authors were asked to present their work in 5 minutes blitz presentations. This was arranged as a plenary session in the auditorium on the last day of the symposium.

To my opinion the idea worked out very well. Allthough in the end their would be 8 awardees, for every nominated poster author, it was already a sensation, a recognition and a reward to be speaking for several hundred attendees that were present in the auditorium during this session. All did very very well. I have asked 12 colleagues to be the reviewer in this final round. In prinicple peers that did not review in the first round. They were asked to rank the work presented. The combined ranks have allowed me to find the best 8.

Though there will improvements in the process to be considered, I felt this is a fair way to evaluate the eight best and very rewarding for the nominees.

The awards were presented by Prof. Michael Laemmerhofer on behalf of the scientific organization commitee and by Dr. Bjoern Erxleben, on behalf of Shimadzu Europe. You will find a copy of the award presentation slides in the menu item "My Reports" of the Publications menu or by clicking here (keep in mind to have registered to this website. Details in the top contribution in this blog)

Best Poster AwardeesAwardees of the Genzo Shimadzu Best Poster Award at ISC 2014.

From left to right, Dr. Gerard Rozing, Lorenz Stock, University of Salzburg, Kaia-Liisa Habicht, Tallinn University, Lars Büter, University of Münster, Stephan Brox, Helmholtz Centre For Environmental Research, Karin Krone,  University of Leipzig, Heike Gerhardt, Tuebingen University, Jan Soukup, University of Pardubice, Ingrid Hintersteiner, Johannes Keppler University Linz, Dr. Björn Erxleben, Shimadzu Europe and Prof. Michael Lämmerhöfer.