Guidelines for Hosting the Multi-city PhD School @ ACM Multimedia Asia

MM Asia Steering Committee


Multi-city PhD school is a brand-new satellite event associated with MM Asia conference, to involve more student attendees to the conference. Students in multiple cities are expected be gathered together (virtually + physically) for exchanging ideas, and senior researchers (mentors) could share their experiences with local and remote students. This event is financially supported by SIGMM, and organized by the MM Asia organizing committee (PhD-school Chairs) each year.

Time and Location

As a satellite event associated with MM Asia, PhD school is expected to be before or after the main conference (just like workshops and tutorials). The program will be hosted in 3-5 satellite sites located in different Asian cities. Each site will physically gather 30-50 PhD students plus 1-2 senior researchers (as mentors) in a local venue. Different sites are virtually connected by online meeting. Students are encouraged to register the MM Asia to attend the main conference virtually.


Invited student speakers will deliver a 3-minutes lightning talk in turn followed by QA-discussion with mentors. A session with two half day is recommended.

An example program: the 1st PhD-school associated with ACM MM Asia 2021 (Gold Coast, Australia), brings 100+ PhD students to the event in four cities (Beijing, Chengdu, Sydney and Brisbane).

Financial Support

Each site will be financially supported with up to $3,000 by SIGMM. Organizers could make minor updates on budget based on their own plan. 3~5 sites are expected.

PhD-school Chairs

Chairs of PhD-school typically include a PC (leading chair) from the main conference, and 1~2 chairs per site. Co-chairs from different sites will closely work with the leading chair for hosting this multi-city event. All chairs will be listed in the organizing committee of MM Asia, as “PhD-school Chairs”.

Tips and practices

  1. PhD school provides opportunities to junior PhD students to present at international venue
  2. Free-style: the organizers can bring in all kinds of activities to encourage interactions
  3. Set up the venue even at a Coffee Shop to alleviate the stress of students
  4. Senior researchers (mentors) are expected to have face-to-face interactions with students
  5. Enable broadcasting to make connections among different sites
  6. It is not suggested to let students attend full-day long session. Proper breaks and various activities should be introduced, e.g., two half-day
  7. Contact a number of universities (research groups) to secure a good number of attendances