Dear Members of AASP and Prospective Participants,
I hope you are all healthy and in good spirit.
Members of the Organizing Committee have met several times during the past month to carefully assess the pandemic situation in Korea and around the world. As you would agree, there are indications that this coming Summer may not be any different from what we are experiencing now. The Korean government has announced that it will be toward the end of the year when the nation will finally reach somewhere near herd immunity. Thus, it will continue enforcing the current quarantine measures unless something dramatic happens (which is highly unlikely). This means that all visitors coming from overseas will have to self-quarantine for 2 weeks, and large gatherings such as ours will be strictly prohibited.
We’ve been trying hard to possibly host an in-person conference as scheduled, at times feeling that we’re being unreasonable, clinging to something already impossible. All in all, we are at the mercy of the virus for now, and unfortunately it seems that things will stay the same for many more months, if not years. This leaves us no other options than rethinking how we are going to manage the upcoming conference.
So, we regrettably decided to turn the conference into a virtual format. This is especially regrettable because we have such a great line-up for the featured series, including keynote speeches, featured presentations and symposia. Even more disheartening to us is we can’t meet all the participants in person, missing great opportunities for networking and socializing.
Please understand that our assessment of the situation is consistent with that of other organizations, especially the ones that are having a conference in the coming Summer. I know this is a big disappointment, but I’d like to remind you that regardless of the format we will do our best to create a successful event.
At the minimum, we will continue to assess possibilities for a hybrid format with keynotes and featured presentations. It depends, of course, on changes in the quarantine policy and the speed of vaccination around the region. All other talks are decided to be held on-line. We are currently developing a new platform for a virtual event which will include live-streaming and pre-recorded presentations. We will keep you posted as we make progress on logistics and virtual platforms. Please also note that we are extending the deadline for abstract submission to March 31st. We will also reduce registration fees to offer opportunities for students and young scholars to participate in this exciting event. I am sorry that I am the bearer of a disappointing message. I hope you will understand our decision and support us in full by participating with a great deal of enthusiasm and an open mind.
Hoon-Seok Choi, Ph.D.
Asian Association of Social Psychology
Korean Social & Personality Psychological Association