2018 Southeastern Conference for Public Administration Annual Conference

Call For Proposals, Papers, Presentations and Panels

Reimagining Public Service in the Age of Innovation


September 20 - 23, 2018
Sheraton Downtown
2101 Richard Arrington Blvd.
Birmingham, AL



About the Conference
Since 1969, the Southeastern Conference for Public Administration (SECoPA) has been the gathering place of ideas for public service practitioners, researchers, and students in our ten-state region. The conference offers attendees the opportunity to engage in scholarly discourse, discover the latest innovations in the field, share ideas from practitioners in the field, and network with other public service administrators across the region.

Host Chapter and Location
The Alabama Chapter of the American Society for Public Administration (ASPA) will be hosting the 2018 edition of SECoPA's Annual Regional Conference. We are excited to welcome delegates to the heart of the South in Birmingham, Alabama, which has been nominated as the "Top 10 Places in the South" (Southern Living Magazine) and one of the "52 Places in the World to Visit" (The New York Times). The Conference will be held at the Sheraton Downtown at 2101 Richard Arrington Blvd., Birmingham, AL 35203 (1-888-627-7095). Within walking distance of the Sheraton, conference attendees will have the opportunity to experience the southern renaissance with world-class restaurants, craft breweries, railway walking tours, top golf, and theaters.

Conference Website

Conference Theme and Tracks
Reimagining Public Service in the Age of Innovation

Complementing the conference theme, we invite submissions for paper proposals, panels, and professional presentations addressing cutting-edge issues and innovative ideas of scholarship and practice in public administration within the following program tracks:
  • Local Government
  • State Government and Federalism
  • Nonprofit Leadership and Management
  • Disasters/Hazards/Emergency Management
  • Environmental Policy and Management
  • Ethics and Leadership
  • Finance and Budgeting
  • Healthy Policy and Management
  • Human Resource Management
  • International and Global Comparative Administration
  • Information Technology and Management
  • Community Planning, Engagement and Urban Affairs
  • Policy, Planning, and Program Evaluation
  • Organizational Theory and Behavior
  • Social Welfare Policy
  • Criminal Justice Administration
  • Diversity, Inclusion, and LGBTQIA Rights
  • Election Administration

Proposal Submissions
All submissions will be made through the SECoPA 2018 Conference website. Go to the Conference Website's Call for Proposals page (link) and click the "Submit a Proposal" button (note: submissions do not begin until March 1, 2018). After entering your contact information, you will be asked to select from the following proposal types:

1.    Individual academic paper
2.    Full academic paper panel (3-5 papers, plus a discussant if you have one)
3.    Individual practitioner professional presentation (without a formal paper)
4.    Full practitioner panel (four presentations with or without papers)

Individual Academic Papers
For those interested in submitting an academic paper, you will be asked to provide your contact information and institutional affiliation, the paper's title, and a 250-500 word abstract that includes the research question, a summary of theory, data, method, preliminary findings, and the importance or implications of the work. You will also select the appropriate primary and secondary program tracks for the paper.

Full Academic Paper Panels
For those interested in submitting a proposal for an academic paper panel (3-5 presentations), you will be asked to submit the proposed panel title, a summary of the research that the panel will address, paper titles and abstracts (250-500 words) for each panel paper, the names, affiliations, and contact information of panel participants, including the moderator and presenters/co-authors, and the primary and secondary program tracks you believe your panel best fits. You will also provide information for a discussant, if you have one.

Practitioner Presentations
For practitioners submitted a professional presentation, you will be asked to submit the proposed presentation title, a description of the presentation and its intended learning outcomes (250-500 words), your institutional affiliation and contact information, the estimated time of the presentation (typical presentations last 10-20 minutes), and the primary and secondary program tracks that are the best fit for your presentation.

Practitioner Panels
For practitioners interested in submitting a proposal for a panel consisting of four (4) practitioner presentations, you will be asked to provide the proposed panel title, a description of the panel and its intended learning outcomes (250-500 words), the names, institutional affiliations, and contact information of all panel participants, including the panel convener, and the primary and secondary program tracks that are the best fit for your panel. You will also be asked to provide the estimated time of the panel. (Typical presentations last 10-20 minutes. A typical panel consists of multiple presentations over the course of 60-90 minutes).

Student Best Paper Awards
The prestigious Robert L. Kline Award (for master's students) and the Morris W.H. Collins Award (for doctoral students) for best papers will be presented to students presenting original research at the conference. To be considered for an award, students should submit abstracts for their papers through the conference's online submissions system and to the Chair of the appropriate award committee:
•    Kline Award Committee Chair (master's students): Dr. John Topinka, The University of Memphis
•    Collins Award Committee Chair (doctoral students): Dr. Eddie French, Mississippi State University

For more information regarding Awards Criteria and Descriptions, please see the "Awards" section of the SECoPA website:
•    Kline Award Guidelines
•    Collins Award Guidelines

Contact Us
•    For questions about the submission process and proposal topics, please contact Program Co-Chairs Sukamar Ganapati (ganapati@fiu.edu) and/or Erin Borry (borry@uab.edu)
•    For special topics, workshops, or program opportunities, please contact Conference Coordinator, Kathleen Hale (halekat@auburn.edu)
•    For questions about conference sponsorship opportunities, please contact Conference Treasurer Brandon Blankenship (SECoPA2018@gmail.com) or Conference Chair Akhlaque Haque (ahaque@uab.edu)
•    For general questions about the conference, please send an email to SECoPA2018@gmail.com

Conference Updates
Please visit the 2018 SECoPA Conference website for the latest information about registration, keynote speakers, and presentation schedules.

Registration and Proposal Deadlines
•    Proposal System Opens: March 1, 2018
•    Deadline for Submission of Proposals: May 15, 2018
•    Proposal Approval Notifications: June 30, 2018