Network of Excellence in Internet Science

Scalable conferences and Internet science's role? Moshe Y. Vardi, Communications of the ACM, Vol. 57 No. 1, Page 5 "One of the main insights developed at the [Dagstuhl] workshop was the computing-research publishing ecosystem—both conferences and journals—has simply failed to scale up with the growth of the field. Consider the following numbers. Between 2002 and 2012, Ph.D. production in computer science and engineering in North America doubled, roughly from 800 to 1,600 (numbers for other parts of the world are not available, regrettably). The number of conference papers published by ACM also roughly doubled, from 6,000 to 12,000. How did we respond to this growth in research production? Simple; instead of doubling the size of our conferences we doubled the number of conferences. The number of ACM conferences during this period grew from about 80 to almost 160!"We are all aware of the adverse effects of "conference inflation." Instead of serving as community-building events, many conferences have become paper-publishing events, the infamous "journals that meet in hotels." Matching papers and conferences has become more difficult, as reviewers struggle to find reasons to reject papers, such as "the result is too simple." Papers bounce from conference to conference, creating an ever-increasing review workload."It is not uncommon to hear of a paper being rejected summarily from one conference only to receive a best-paper award from another conference."

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