Congress '20 set to go online

Congress '20 set to go online

The World Congress of Science and Factual Producers announced July 15 that Congress ’20, originally to be located Strasbourg, will be held online December 8–10 due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. 


“The pandemic has focused the world’s attention on the critical role of science producers, creators and communicators,” said Paul Lewis, conference director for WCSFP. “Scientists have become real-life superheroes and our delegates are at the forefront of telling their stories to a public hungry for credible, trustworthy information. While we’re disappointed at not being able to have a physical event this year, I can’t imagine a more important time to gather as a global community to learn from each other, exchange ideas and best practices.”


Each year, Congress brings together leading international creators of science, history and natural history content with top broadcasters, OTT platforms and digital publishers. A must-attend event where smart content matters, this year’s three-day program will explore future trends in specialist factual production and distribution across all media platforms, including television, VR, online, gaming, AR and film.


The WCSFP statement says how, “Congress ’20 will replicate the experience of the physical event online, offering dynamic and thought-provoking sessions on revolutionary technologies and trends shaping the industry; spotlighting inspiring internationally renowned scientists and industry leaders; and hosting creative virtual social events that encourage networking and collegiality.”


New to this year’s event will be Congress’s inaugural awards for excellence, which will feature 15 award categories including Best Science Communicator, Content with Biggest Impact of the Year, and Lifetime Achievement Award in Factual Content. The awards will recognize talent and people as much as content, awarding projects that align with WCSFP’s values of diversity, support for emerging producers and inclusion of all platforms. Winners will receive one free registration for the following year’s Congress and a signature award statue. The awards will be held on the final day of Congress ’20 via a virtual event.


The full schedule of programming and events will be available in October. 


The statement further stresses how, “WCSFP offers up-and-coming producers and content creators working in all science and non-fiction media, including those working in digital media, social media and gaming, a range of financial support for Congress accreditation through its Emerging Producers Bursary Program.” 


Applications open on July 23 and close on September 4. Financial support is also available to researchers and scientists, as well as attendees from under-represented regions and markets. 


The World Congress of Science and Factual Producers is a not-for-profit, member-run organization dedicated to celebrating the best in non-fiction media. The WCSFP is the place where science, history and natural history content creators and executives gather to share, explore and reveal how advancements within these industries are communicated to the world. Past Congresses have been held in such cities as Tokyo, Japan (2019); Brisbane, Australia (2018); San Francisco, USA (2017); Stockholm, Sweden (2016). It is administered by a board of directors and an elected editorial committee that deals primarily with editorial matters. 


The 28th annual Congress is managed by Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival on behalf of the WCSFP.