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International AIDS Society

Frequently Asked Questions



Abstract Submission
Abstract Mentor Programme (AMP)
Conference Programme
Prizes & Awards
Scholarships
Volunteers



Abstract Submission


What is an abstract?
The 7th IAS Conference on HIV Pathogenesis, Treatment and Prevention (IAS 2013), considers an abstract as a stand-alone statement that briefly explains, in a non-repetitive style, the essential information of a study, research project, policy or programme. The abstract presents the objective, methods, results and conclusions of the study.

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May I submit an abstract to the conference?
IAS 2013 welcomes the submission of abstracts in the following scientific tracks:
  • Track A: Basic Sciences
  • Track B: Clinical Sciences
  • Track C: Prevention Science
  • Track D: Operations and Implementation Research
The Abstract submission period is open from 1 December 2012 to 24 January 2013 – 23:59 Central European Time. During this period, abstracts will be accepted through the online submission form available on the conference website. For more information on abstract submission, please visite: www.ias2013.org/Default.aspx?pageId=571

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When is the submission deadline for abstracts?
The final deadline to submit an abstract is 24 January 2013 - 23:59 Central European Time.

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What is a late breaker abstract
Late breaker abstracts present data gathered after the regular abstract submission deadline closes that is of unquestioned immediate significance. Data analyzed after the regular submission deadline (24 January 2013) should not be submitted as late breaker research if the data does not meet an extremely high scientific threshold. A small number of late breaker abstracts will be accepted to be presented orally or as posters at the conference.

The percentage of abstracts selected as late breakers will depend on the number of submissions, and selection will be significantly more rigorous than for regular abstracts.

The same submission rules apply for the late breaker abstracts as for the regular abstracts, however each presenting author may only present one late breaker abstract at the conference. Late breaker abstract submissions will be open from 3 April to 7 May 2013.

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Where can I read more about the scientific tracks?
Detailed descriptions about the scope and objectives of each scientific track, as defined by the Scientific Programme Committee, can be found here: www.ias2013.org/track_scope.aspx.

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How do I submit an abstract?
Before submitting an abstract, you are asked to create a Conference Profile at http://profile.ias2013.org. One or several abstracts can be submitted through the Conference Profile.

To submit an abstract, you can login into your Conference Profile on www.ias2013.org and click on the "Abstract Submission" field in the Overview-tab. You will then see a link to enter into the abstract submission system.

In the abstract submission system, follow steps 1-4 to create and submit your abstract:
  1. Select the track, category and country of research; enter your abstract title and text
  2. Enter the presenting author and co-authors (individually)
  3. Preview your abstract to ensure the format and content are correct
  4. Submit your abstract
To navigate in the abstract submission system, use the next step buttons or the upper menu bar. For detailed instructions about the abstract submission system, click on "HELP" button in the upper menu bar.

After an abstract has been created, you can modify it any time before the submission deadline. After submitting the abstract, a confirmation email will be sent to the submitter. This email will contain the abstract reference number.

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Once submitted, can I still modify my abstract?
Yes, once an abstract has been created via the online Conference Profile, modifications can be made any time before the submission deadline. After making your modifications, you will need to submit your abstract again. No modifications will be accepted after the submission deadline.

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My project is still ongoing and there are no results yet, should I still submit an abstract?
Abstracts are intended to present scientific studies, research, programmes, policies, etc. highlighting both the methods or description and results or recommendations. If you are describing a study that is still in the planning stage, it would not be suitable as an abstract submission unless, for instance, the method that you will use is of particular scientific interest. However, if your study is currently on-going and you only have preliminary data, but it seems relevant or significant, please submit the abstract.

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What is the required structure for an abstract?
An abstract consists of a title, author list and the abstract text. It can also include tables or graphs/images. Literature references should not be included. The abstract text should be structured as follows:
  • Background: Indicate the purpose and objective of the research, the hypothesis that was tested or a description of the problem being analyzed or evaluated.
  • Methods: Describe the setting/location for the study, study design, study population, data collection and methods of analysis used.
  • Results: Present as clearly and detailed as possible the findings/outcome of the study, with specific results in summarized form.
  • Conclusions: Briefly discuss the data and main outcome of the study. Emphasize the significance for HIV prevention, treatment, care and/or support, and future implications of the results.
For abstracts that do not easily fit into this structure described above, further suggestions on how to use the different fields are provided below:
  • Background: Describe the issue being analyzed or addressed.
  • Methods: Include a description on the way the issue was addressed, e.g. how a programme was implemented and evaluated.
  • Results: Include information on the knowledge gained from the work and the specific lessons learned.
  • Conclusions: Discuss the findings, next steps or recommendations.

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How should I define the title of my abstract?
A good abstract title is short, specific, representative and informative. It helps the reviewers categorize your abstract and if accepted, it may help conference delegates find your session. The title should summarize your abstract without going into excessive detail. Describe the topic clearly, including, for example, the population, country and issue of the research.

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Can I include a table, graph or image in my abstract?
It is possible, but not mandatory, to include tables or graphs/images in the abstract.

The maximum number of tables allowed per abstract is three. Note that each one of them counts as 10 words per row. The maximum size of each table is 10 rows x 10 columns.

The maximum number of graphs/images allowed per abstract is three. Note that each graph/image is equivalent to 50 words. The maximum file size of each graph is 500 KB. The maximum pixel size of the graph is 600(w) x 800(h) pixel. You may upload graphs in JPG, GIF or PNG format.

You can create your table or upload your graph/image by following the instructions in the abstract submission system. Place the table or graph/image into your abstract text and save the changes. Check the abstract preview-page to ensure that your table or graph/image is displayed properly.

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How many co-authors can I include on the authors' list?
There is no limit to the number of co-authors per abstract, although we strongly recommend the use of a Study Group Name for abstracts with a high number of co-authors. A person can be listed as a co-author if he/she meets ALL the following criteria:
  1. he/she made substantial contributions to concept and design, acquisition of data, or analysis and interpretation of data,
  2. he/she drafted the abstract or revised it for intellectual content,
  3. he/she approved the final version of the submitted abstract.

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Do I need to disclose information of any conflict of interest in my abstract?
If the abstract is accepted, the presenting authors are asked to disclose all financial and personal relationships between themselves and others that might be perceived by others as biasing their work. The conference organizer asks that all presenting authors disclose any conflict of interest at the time of presentation for the benefit of conference delegates. The purpose of this is to guarantee that all potential conflicts of interest are recognized and mechanisms to resolve them prior to the conference are implemented.

Material presented in abstracts should not violate any copyright laws. If figures/graphics/images have been taken from sources not copyrighted by the author, it is the author's sole responsibility to secure the rights from the copyright holder in writing to reproduce those figures/graphics/images for both worldwide print and web publication. All reproduction costs charged by the copyright holder must be borne by the author.

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Who selects the abstracts and decides how they will be presented?
All submitted abstracts will go through a blind peer-review process carried out by an international reviewing committee. Each abstract will be reviewed by at least three reviewers. The Scientific Programme Committee makes the final selection of abstracts to be included in the conference programme.

The highest-scoring abstracts will be selected for presentation in Oral Abstract Sessions or in a slightly shorter Oral Poster Discussion Session. The majority of the posters will be displayed in the Poster Exhibition.

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What is abstract mentoring?
The IAS 2013 Abstract Mentor Programme is designed to offer young and/or less experienced abstract authors opportunities to receive mentoring and feedback from experienced abstract submitters. The programme is especially targeted at researchers from resource-limited settings who lack access to opportunities for rigorous mentoring in research and writing, or for whom online distance education is proven to cost-effectively build research capacity.

For more information please visit www.ias2013.org/abstract_mentor.aspx.

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How can I increase the chances for my abstract to be accepted?
The methodology or study design presented in your abstract should be appropriate to address the purpose and objectives. Results should be clearly presented and support the conclusions. In addition, the findings should contribute to the advancement of knowledge and development in the field.

If English is not your native language we strongly recommend that you have your abstract reviewed by a native English speaker working in your field before submission.

You may also want to look into some examples of abstracts from previous conferences, available at: www.iasociety.org/AbstractSearch.aspx.

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Who has the copyright for my abstract after submission?
Submission of your abstract constitutes your consent to publication. If your abstract is accepted, the IAS can publish or reprint the abstract text and the authors' information in the Abstract Book, Abstract CD-ROM, the Journal of the IAS (JIAS), IAS websites and other IAS publications.

The abstract copyright belongs to the author(s), but submission automatically grants the IAS permission to reproduce abstracts presented at IAS 2013 for non-commercial use. No textual or graphical content will be altered and sources will be acknowledged.

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I need a certificate that my abstract was accepted for the conference. Who do I contact?
To obtain certificates on abstracts accepted to the conference, please contact .

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How do I receive an Abstract Book?
The full text of all abstracts presented at the conference (in Oral Abstract Sessions, Oral Poster Discussion Sessions and in the Poster Exhibition) is included in the conference Abstract Book. The book is available for 30 USD per book and must be pre-ordered. Delegates who would like to have a printed copy of the Abstract Book are asked to indicate this in the online registration form when registering for the conference. A limited number of copies of the Abstract Book will also be available for purchase in the conference venue.

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How do I receive a Conference CD-ROM?
The Conference CD-ROM, which includes abstracts presented at the conference, the Conference Programme and General Information guide, will be distributed free to all registered delegates from an information counter in the registration area on Saturday 29 June 2013, and from the sponsor's exhibition booth from Sunday 30 June 2013.

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What is an e-poster?
Authors of abstracts selected for Oral Poster Discussion Sessions and Poster Exhibition are invited to upload an electronic poster (e-poster). The E-posters will be published on the Conference CD-ROM and on the conference website. Instructions for preparing and uploading the e-posters will be sent to selected abstract authors via email.

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Abstract Mentor Programme (AMP)

What is abstract mentoring?
If you don't have a lot of experience in writing scientific abstracts, a mentor can help you. We have a pool of around 60 - 100 mentors who can provide advice and feedback on how to write successful abstracts for each of the conference tracks.

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When is the programme available?
The AMP opens on the 22 November 2012 (8 days before the abstract submissions process opens on the 1 December) and closes on the 11 January 2013, 2 weeks before the abstract submission deadline.

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Why does the International AIDS Society provide this service
Mentoring support is proven to increase the chance of young and less-experienced HIV researchers of having their abstracts accepted for a conference. It's also a way for you to have a fresh pair of eyes review your work, and share their expertise with you.

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Who can use this mentoring service?
All conference delegates can use the mentoring service. We especially encourage researchers from developing countries to take advantage of this unique opportunity.

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What are the results of using the AMP?
Over the years, the AMP has proven to increase the motivation of early career researchers as well as the submissions of abstracts from developing countries. Last year, a record breaking 582 abstracts were mentored, and nearly a quarter of mentored abstracts submitted for AIDS 2012 were accepted. Nearly 90% of abstract submitters told us they found the programme useful.

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Is the mentoring free?
Absolutely! The mentoring is free. But to avoid overload, each delegate is asked to submit no more than 2 draft abstracts for review.

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How do I submit a draft abstract for mentoring?
To register for the Abstract Mentor Programme, you need to create a conference profile. A live sign up link with be available on the IAS 2013 website when the programme opens on the 22 November 2012: www.ias2013.org/abstract_mentor.aspx

Through that, click on the box that says "Abstract Mentor Programme" and follow the easy steps.

Note: We cannot accept abstracts submitted by e-mail, fax, telephone and regular mail.

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Then what happens?
We match you to a mentor who can best provide feedback in your abstract research area.

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What does the mentor do?
Mentors will review your abstract based on a set of guidelines and provide you feedback within ten working days and latest by 18 January 2013 (excluding the holiday period 24 December 2012 to 2 January 2013). You may also ask a specific question when you submit your draft abstract.

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How do I get the mentor's feedback?
Mentors submit their feedback to the IAS, and we then forward this to you via the Abstract Mentor Programme system, so please be sure you provide a working e-mail address when you register.

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Is the service available only in English?
At this time, it is only available in English.

Note: all abstracts for the conference must be in English.

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Do I have to be registered for the Conference to participate as a mentor or to submit a question?
No, you don't have to register for the conference to use this service. But, you need to create an online conference profile.

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I don't know what to ask a mentor - any suggestions?
You can ask questions on the scientific content, as well as the language of your abstract. From previous conferences, some questions that have been asked are:
  • Is my introduction extensive enough?
  • Are my conclusions clear and well supported by my collected data?
  • Have I described the method I have used well enough?
  • What part of the abstract could I edit to shorten my abstract?
  • Would a graph or table be useful?
  • What other conclusions/lessons learned should I list?
You can also ask mentors questions on practical issues, such as clarity of writing and formal requirements of the abstract, as well as any methodological or scientific questions that may arise from the abstract content. The answers will guide you to edit and improvements to the abstract before you officially submit it to the conference.

Note: Mentors may not write, translate or make the changes to the draft abstract on your behalf.

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What questions can I NOT ask mentors?
Please do NOT ask the mentor if you think your abstract will be accepted for the conference.

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How long do mentors take to respond?
Mentors will review your abstract based on a set of guidelines and provide you feedback within ten working days and latest by 18 January 2013 (excluding the holiday period 24 December 2012 to 2 January 2013).

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Can I be an abstract mentor?
Sure! We welcome HIV/AIDS and public health professionals with experience in HIV research, who have had two abstracts accepted and have co-authored at least one manuscripts accepted by a peer-reviewed scientific journal.

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Is abstract mentoring a part of the abstract review and selection process?
No, mentoring is completely independent of the abstract review and selection process.

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I don't have an abstract, but have a question about abstracts! What do I do?
Have a look at the following part of the conference website: http://www.ias2013.org/Default.aspx?pageId=564 and the questions in this section. If you don't find your answer there, send us an e-mail to .

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Before I send my abstract to a mentor, I need to write it, so what kind of help do you provide?
Have a look at the online abstract writing module presented by the IAS in collaboration with Health [e] Foundation. The module will be available on the AMP webpage from the 22 November 2012: www.ias2013.org/abstract_mentor.aspx

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Conference Programme

Can I see the conference programme in advance?
The conference programme will be published on the conference website in May 2013. Information on the plenary sessions will be available from December 2012. However, regular updates will be posted on the website throughout 2012 and 2013.

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What is the Workshops programme?
IAS 2013 will offer 10 targeted workshops that will promote and enhance opportunities for knowledge transfer, skills development and collaborative learning about the latest scientific research and breakthroughs. These 90 or 180-minutes workshops provide intensive focus on an identified topic allowing the participant to deepen knowledge and gain useful insights to apply in their respective profession.

The workshop programme is aimed at increasing the capacity of delegates to implement and advocate for effective, evidence-based HIV/AIDS policies and interventions in their respective communities and countries.

The workshops topics will be selected by the Scientific Programme Committee and the Community Advisory Group who will also be responsible for selecting the workshop facilitator and overseeing the development of the programme. The content of the workshops will be designed by experienced HIV professionals from leading training and educational organizations.

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Prizes & Awards

How do I apply for the IAS/ANRS Young Investigator Award?
You do not need to apply for the award directly. Once you have submitted an abstract for the IAS 2013 conference and if you meet the criteria listed below, you will be automatically considered. Eligible candidates are the presenting authors of IAS conference abstracts who meet the following criteria:
  • The abstract must have been accepted as an oral presentation, poster discussion or poster exhibition by the Scientific Programme Committee;
  • The presenting author must be under 35 years of age;
  • The research demonstrates innovation, originality, rationale and quality.

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How do I apply for the Women, Girls and HIV Investigator Prize?
You do not need to fill-in a specific application. In order to identify relevant conference abstracts for the prize, a tick box is available on the conference abstract submission page with the question: Is the abstract specifically related to women and girls? Only abstracts that have answered this question by ticking the box will be considered for the prize. In addition, to be eligible for the prize, abstracts must meet the following criteria:
  • The abstract must have been accepted as an oral presentation, poster discussion or poster exhibition by the Scientific Programme Committee;
  • The presenting author is a national from a low- or middle-income country;
  • The investigation has taken place in a low- or middle-income country;
  • The abstract demonstrates excellence in research and/or practice that addresses women, girls and gender issues related to HIV and AIDS.

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How do I apply for the IAS TB/HIV Research Prize?
You do not need to apply for the prize directly. Once you have submitted an abstract for the IAS 2013 conference and if you meet the criteria listed below, you will be automatically considered.

To be eligible for the prize, abstracts must meet the following criteria:
  • The abstract must have been accepted as an oral presentation, poster discussion or poster exhibition by the Scientific Programme Committee;
  • Research must be related to HIV and TB.

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Scholarships

I cannot afford to pay for a conference registration. Is there financial aid available?
The conference organizers are committed to making IAS 2013 accessible to people from resource-limited settings and communities, researchers and students. Around 200 scholarships will be awarded to applicants from around the world through the International Scholarship Programme. A very limited number of scholarships will also be available for media representatives from around the world. For more information visit www.ias2013.org/scholarships.aspx. Those interested in this programme can apply online from 6 December 2012 to 24 January 2013.

Priority will be given to those whose participation will help enhance their work in their own communities, to those who are able to assist in the transfer of skills and knowledge acquired at the conference and to those whose abstract submission have been selected.

Although every attempt will be made to assist as many people as possible to attend, we regret that there are only a limited number of scholarships available. Applicants are therefore strongly encouraged to seek other funding as well.

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What kind of funding will I receive?
Applicants are able to request all or some of the following to attend IAS 2013:
  • registration to the conference;
  • economy-class return airfare;
  • shared accommodation in a budget hotel;
  • modest daily allowance.
Please note that the type of support requested may not be the type of support granted. Full scholarships will only be awarded in a limited number of cases. Partial scholarships will also be awarded.

In all cases individuals will be required to cover the cost of their hotel incidental expenses, meals and other extra expenses, as well as visa costs, which can be considerable and may require a significant amount of time.

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Who decides who is awarded a scholarship?
The criteria for scholarship selection have been decided by the Conference Coordinating Committee. The criteria change from one conference to another, as the epidemic changes. The available budget is divided by region, and generally, those regions most affected by HIV are allocated the largest portion of the budget.

Fully completed applications are then scored according to these criteria established by the committee, and the highest scoring applicants are awarded a scholarship.

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How do I know if I am awarded a scholarship?
Scholarship notifications will be sent by email to all applicants in early April.

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Volunteers

Who can volunteer for the IAS 2013 Conference?
Volunteers must be at least 18 years old (as of 28 June 2013), have a basic understanding of English and be able to commit to more than 2 shifts during the week of 26 June – 3 July 2013.

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How do I apply to volunteer?
An Online Volunteer Application Form will be available from 1st April 2013. The IAS Volunteer Department will only accept applications through this online form. Applications by email, fax or letter will be refused.

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When will volunteers know if they have been accepted?
The IAS 2013 Volunteer Department will start reviewing the applications in May. Volunteers who applied before 10 May will be notified of their acceptance by 15 May 2013. Volunteers who applied after 10 May will be notified of their acceptance 20 days after successfully submitting the Volunteer Application Form.

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What are the criteria to be accepted as a volunteer?
Volunteers who have a maximum availability to volunteer from 26 June – 3 July will be prioritized.

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When will volunteers receive their final schedule?
After confirming suggested timetable through the Online Volunteer Portal, volunteers will then receive their final schedule within 10 days. Please note that the scheduling process will start by mid-May 2013.

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Can volunteers outside of the Malaysia apply?
Yes. Volunteers seeking to volunteer at IAS 2013 will be required to meet Malaysia customs and immigration requirements for visitors. Unfortunately, the conference secretariat is not able to offer any financial assistance and volunteers are responsible for their own accommodation and travel costs. It is the sole responsibility of the volunteer to take care of his/her visa requirements.

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What are the benefits for volunteers?
Volunteers will have access to the weekly conference sessions when not on duty (usually volunteers get a morning or an afternoon shift). They will receive a volunteer T-shirt and will get lunch for free if scheduled for the day.

Furthermore, volunteers will have the possibility to gain international experience at the world's largest conference on AIDS.

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Do volunteers receive a Certificate for their participation at the IAS 2013 Conference?
A Certificate of Appreciation will be downloadable after the conference through the Volunteer Portal.

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Is there a volunteer application closing date?
Applications closes once the numbers of volunteer needed is reached. We therefore encourage you to apply as soon as the Volunteer Application Form is online (1st April 2013).

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If a person is selected to volunteer, but has already paid the registration fee, will the secretariat refund the volunteer?
If you have registered as a regular IAS 2013 Delegate before 1st of April 2013 and your application as volunteer has been accepted, you can get your IAS 2013 Registration refunded by emailing .

If you have submitted a volunteer application form before 18 April 2013 and your volunteer application was unsuccessful you will get a special code to register at the conference as a regular delegate at a Standard Fee.

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How many hours per day will a volunteer be expected to work?
It depends on the activity the volunteer is selected for. Activities can vary between 6 and 8 hours a day. In order to allow the volunteer to attend sessions during the day we try to schedule volunteer either in the morning (6:30 – 14:00) or in the afternoon (13:00- 20:30).