Presenter guidelines for lightning talks, presentations, and display materials

For the majority of sessions, presentations will have two components: display materials that can be uploaded from 1 month before the live conference days and lightning talks and break-out room discussions during the live sessions.

A live session lasts 1.5 hours. The first part (1 hour) is reserved for lightning presentations, the second part (ca. 30 minutes) for live discussions in video chat rooms in small groups. The starting time of your session and the specific time when your lightning talk is scheduled are given in the letter of schedule you received. The time assigned for each contribution includes time for short questions directly following your talk – this is in addition to the 30 minutes foreseen for discussion after all the lightning presentations have been given.

Screen capture by the audience: capturing any screens of scientific material presented in any presentation is not allowed unless the presenter authorises this. Please inform the audience whether you welcome screen capture and its sharing on social media by including an official graphic "screen capture welcome" (download PNG, JPG, PDF) or "screen capture NOT allowed" (download PNG, JPG, PDF) on the first (or all) slide(s).


  • Screen capture welcome (white): PNG, JPG, PDF
  • Screen capture welcome (blue): PNG, JPG, PDF
  • Screen capture NOT allowed (white): PNG, JPG, PDF
  • Screen capture NOT allowed (blue): PNG, JPG, PDF

Lightning presentations

  • The majority of 1.5h session blocks will have between 6 and 10 lightning talks of 5 minutes, 3 minutes for the talk and 2 minutes for Q&A directly following the talk; possibly there may be one 15-minute solicited lightning talk (12 minutes for the talk and 3 minutes for Q&A).
  • The lightning talk format is a rather dramatic break with the concept of traditional academic presentation formats at EMS Annual Meetings (and other conferences) in the past. The length of lightning presentations during the live sessions is much shorter than at on-site meetings. A lightning talk highlights the main result, aims or impacts; it is an extended pitch that should raise interest and awareness of your work and invite discussions.
  • With this we account for the experience that attention span tends to be much shorter at virtual events but also seize the opportunity to put emphasis on the discussion component of the meeting. The session format also puts all contributions on equal terms.
  • Lightning talk material: for the live 3-minute lightning talk, presenters are asked to upload their highlight slides at the latest 24 hours before the session starts, with a maximum of two slides; during the session the slides will be moved forward by the assistant. For 12-minute solicited lightning talks, please prepare your slides and share your screen during your presentation. In case presenters are concerned about the stability of their Internet connection, they are encouraged to pre-record a 3-minute video (solicited: 12-minute video) of their lightning talk (deadline: 24 hours before the session starts; there is a length check during upload enabled). more details
  • For instructions on how to record a presentation, please download the PDF file on how to record a presentation.
  • Following the lightning talks, 30 minutes are scheduled for discussions in break-out video rooms: one break-out room will be opened for each lightning talk presenter to discuss with anyone their work in detail. The chairs of the session may also decide to group the presentations/presenters thematically into fewer discussion rooms (could be three to four rooms). All participants of the session can freely choose which break-out room to attend and switch the rooms at any time.
  • Screen sharing about additional material to support the discussion is possible in the break-out rooms.
  • People in the break-out rooms will be alerted 2 minutes in advance before the break-out rooms are closed and all attendees are again in the main meeting room for the closing words of the session chair.

Presentations in PSE, ES1.1, and ES2.1 sessions

Plenary sessions such as Strategic Lectures, the Harry-Otten-Prize sessions, Highlight talks or the Keynote Presentations, are run through Zoom webinars. More information on Zoom settings.

Selected sessions from the ES and PSE programme Streams, "Developing the weather services value chain to serve society better" (ES1.1), "Communication and media" (ES2.1), “A tribute to Sergej Zilitinkevich” (PSE5), and “How far have we come in achieving Gender equality in the Global Weather enterprise?” (PSE9) will be run as Zoom meetings, but otherwise follow the same concept as the PSE sessions.

  • Speakers in these sessions will give their presentation by sharing their screen and running their presentation file on their own device. Please use only desktop or laptop computers and no mobile devices when presenting. In principle you can also upload your presentation slides at the latest 24 hours before the session starts, but the control to switch slides is with the conference assistant. In case you are concerned about the stability of your Internet connection, please upload a pre-recorded video of the length assigned for your presentation.
  • Presenters and additional speakers are defined in the Zoom webinar as panellists. They will receive a personal invitation email within 2 weeks prior the conference. Please do not share this invitation email. The invitation will provide an earlier event time – 15 minutes prior to the scheduled session time – to allow time for checking the availability of all panellists and their setup. The conference assistant will open the webinar for the general attendees upon the scheduled session time.
  • PSE sessions run as Zoom webinar will be recorded for on-demand viewing by registered conference attendees through to 30 September 2021, and publicly after 30 September 2021. Convening, chairing, or presenting in recorded sessions implies the acceptance of the recording.
  • Zoom webinars will also be streamed to the conference platform for live attendance without having to join Zoom itself; questions in the chat box of the stream will be monitored and provided to speakers in the Zoom webinar.
  • Pre-recorded talks: if authors cannot attend the live session due to their time zone or personal reasons, they are asked to inform their session convener/chair beforehand and record their talk in the form of a *.mp4 video file. Please ensure that the video respects the time limits of the scheduled presentation time. These video files must be uploaded at least 24 hours prior to your session's start. The video file will be hosted on the Copernicus Meetings Vimeo channel and will be displayed during the live session in lieu of the live presentation. After the session, it will form part of the entire session recording that will be available for viewing on demand to conference participants, and publicly after 30 September 2021. Presenters of pre-recorded talks are still required to register for the conference. The pre-recorded presentation will be uploaded through the central display & presentation upload tool
  • Authors of abstracts presented in PSE sessions are also encouraged to make use of sharing so-called display materials. Display materials can be made available to registered conference attendees and commenting can be enabled. Details are listed in the section display materials and commenting below.

Display materials, commenting and presentation award

  • All authors have the option to upload longer and more detailed display materials to the conference platform in advance of the actual start of the conference, to accompany their abstracts. These can be uploaded and will be available to registered conference participants during the 2-month period from 2 August to 30 September. Modifications are possible throughout this 2-month period. Authors can opt in or out of the commenting feature to allow conference participants to comment and develop a discussion.
  • These displays can be in a format of the author’s choice: *.pdf, *.ppt/pptx, *.pps/ppsx, *.png, *.jpg, or *.mp4 hosted on the Copernicus server or *.html linked from the EMS2021 website and programme but hosted on the author's own infrastructure. If *.mp4 files are uploaded, these will be submitted to the Vimeo channel dedicated to EMS2021 and will only be visible to registered conference participants. The recommended video length is between 10 and 12 minutes.
  • The file size of display materials is limited to 50 MB per abstract for *.pdf, *.ppt/pptx, *.pps/ppsx, *.png, and *.jpg files and to 200 MB for *.mp4 video files.
  • For instructions on how to record a presentation, please download the PDF file on how to record a presentation.
  • In addition to the display materials mentioned above, authors can provide a DOI or URL linking to a presentation they have pre-recorded and submitted to portals like YouTube.
  • Licencing: Authors are asked to indicate distribution licence for their uploaded material within their display material.
  • Commenting: Abstract authors can choose to allow comments and feedback on their display materials when uploading them. Registered conference attendees can comment on uploaded display materials through the conference platform during the 2-month period from 2 August to 30 September unless the abstract authors have opted out of the commenting feature.
  • Visibility after 30 September 2021: Authors are asked to indicate in the upload form, if the uploaded display material shall become publicly available at a later stage.
  • Uploading of displays as early as possible prior to the conference is encouraged for discussions and to allow good preparation by session chairs for live lightning sessions.

Platform for the virtual EMS2021

The platform that will be used for the session running is Zoom. The session programme is run in Zoom meeting rooms, while most strategic and keynote lectures will be held as Zoom webinars. We strongly recommend that you download the Zoom client. Using Zoom through your browser has some limitations in terms of features and the stability of your connection. Your bandwidth must have a capacity of at least 1 MBits/s upstream and 2 MBits/s downstream to ensure a sufficient quality of your attendance. However, it is acknowledged that a number of organisations prohibit their staff from downloading the Zoom client; participating in the Zoom meetings will also be possible through a browser, including being able to join the break-out rooms. The sessions are also streamed to the conference platform, with text chat enabled; this way following the presentation part of sessions is possible without accessing Zoom at all; however, the break-out video meetings cannot be joined this way.

Practice sessions

Zoom practice sessions will be provided every day between 30 August and 02 September from 09:00–11:00 CEST (31 Aug/2 Sep) and 16:00–18:00 (30 Aug/1 Sep) CEST. You will be able to join a test session and test your video and audio connections. The test session link will be provided here.

How to get to your session

  1. Find the active session of your interest in your personal programme, the session programme, or "What's on today". The landing page also features a button for the current time block with a condensed overview of sessions.
  2. Clicking on "Enter live session" will take you to the live session page. This has a list of presentations with links to display materials, a text chat, and access to the Zoom session and handshake tool.
  3. Enter the Zoom session using the green button "Enter Zoom Meeting". Please make sure your microphone/camera are off. Preferably install and run the Zoom app rather than running Zoom in a browser window.
  4. If you do not see the live-session buttons come up, it helps to "hard-refresh" your browser (i.e. override the cache copy): Ctrl+F5 for all browsers on Windows; Chrome for Mac: Command + Shift + R; Safari for Mac: Command + Option + R.
  5. Please be patient if pages take a little time to load, especially upon arriving at the conference. Live-session buttons will now be up 15 minutes before each session.

Zoom setting for meetings

  • Everybody accesses the Zoom Meetings – conveners/chairs, presenting authors, and participants – at the start of the session.
  • A conference assistant will be present as host and will promote the conveners/chairs to co-hosts.
  • Presenting authors will unmute themselves and switch on their camera once the convener/chairs invite them to give their live presentation.
  • The conference assistant will share their screen to show pre-uploaded and pre-recorded slides/presentations.
  • The discussion period is also held in the Zoom Meeting with break-out rooms per presenter. Attention: the option to assign yourself to break-out rooms might not be possible if you join Zoom through your browser. Please download the Zoom client to make full use of the break-out rooms and your self-assignment to such rooms. If you join Zoom through your browser and the assignment is not working, please ask the conference assistant to assign you to a break-out room of your choice.

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