BioSB2020: first online edition Bioinformatics & Systems Biology conference

BioSB2020: first online edition Bioinformatics & Systems Biology conference


Close to three hundred participants from academia and industry joined us during the two-day event. This year’s edition has been different in many ways. Topics covered many aspects of life science research and ranged from microbial evolution to machine learning & AI and precision medicine.

Scientific program
Exciting keynotes from Erik van Nimwegen, Judith Zaugg and Bernhard Palsson, and a full program with 15 parallel sessions and over sixty posters. With 14 selected talks from Utrecht and many posters, the Utrecht Bioinformatics community was well represented at the conference. This emphasizes the logic of the UBC organizing BioSB2020 as part of the 50 years bioinformatics program. Of course, this could not have been done without the BioSB research school. 

Results of online interaction
To stimulate the interactivity during this online event, we did set up both a conference app and online meeting place The latter was also used to organize the online poster sessions. It was great to see so many creative posters (flashes) being set up and the online platforms being used by so many people to catch up and talk to each other. The importance of these contacts are stressed by the first steps that have been set towards a Dutch computational immunology community.

As this was the first online edition of the BioSB conference, we had to redesign the entire conference setup. Not only the preparation of a full array of technical tools to facilitate the different types of sessions. Due to the extensive preparations and large team of people running the conference in the background, the two-day conference ran without any major glitches and has received many positive responses from participants. Looking back on this, it can definitely be said that the organizing committee can be proud of what has been achieved.

Next year’s edition of BioSB2021 is planned for June 15 and 16, so please mark your agenda and hope to see you all there again!