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Accepted as "a distributed paper". Is it worth it?


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Hi! My work has been accepted to a very descent international conference of the major association in my discipline, but just as a distributed paper. They wrote that it means that I am not presenting anything, but they want me to bring a limited number of printed copies and distribute them among other participants. Has anyone done this so far? I mean that it seems a bit weird.

The problem is that the conference is quite far away, it is right during the study semester and I am not sure I will be able to get funding for that. Considering all this, for me the question is the following: Is it worth it? What do you think? Thanks

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I think it is weird, but maybe not in your field? In the sciences, not everyone will get an oral presentation slot -- if you don't, you usually present a poster instead, where some people do have copies of their paper on hand (or uploaded and a URL provided). There is also usually a poster session on one or more evenings, with food and drinks and everyone has a chance to come by and see your poster (but most won't). But I haven't ever seen a conference where someone just hands out copies of their paper without any kind of presentation at all!

If you don't get funding, it's probably not worth it, unless you are in the last year of your degree and you REALLY think getting out there will strongly increase your chances at employment. If you do get funding, it might still be worth it to go IF it's a good conference where you can make some connections or collaborations. Otherwise, maybe wait (and save your funding) until there is another conference closer to home. I think most fields have a national society/association which has an annual meeting of its members and that's usually a good idea to go to at some point during your grad career (maybe not every year since a field-wide meeting may be too general but this means lots of people to meet).

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