Cork will no longer host Aquaculture Europe 2020, which is now going to be an online event.

Unpopped Cork: Aquaculture Europe 2020 is moved online

Europe’s biggest gathering of aquaculture scientists and experts, Aquaculture Europe 2020, has been cancelled because of the risks of Covid-19, but will be held online instead.

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Aquaculture Europe 2020 was originally due to be held in Cork, Ireland from September 29 until October 2 this year but was rescheduled for April 12-15, 2021 because of the pandemic.

The European Aquaculture Society, which organises the event, said today that after weighing up all the elements of risk and contingency, its board had decided that the Cork event next April cannot now go ahead.

Instead it will organise an online event held over the same dates.

Format stays the same

The basic format of the event will stay the same as ‘normal’ Aquaculture Europe meetings, with morning plenary sessions and then breakout parallel sessions for oral and e-poster presentations. The parallel sessions will be made up of shorter slots for pre-recorded video presentations of the oral presentations and with time allocated to review e-posters and for Q&A.

The EAS board has also agreed to extend the deadline for submission of abstracts to January 31.

There will also be an e-market, where vendors and media partners will have a dedicated place online to present their products, link to their website and have a chat-box to interact with attendees and set up meetings.

Key points

Key programme highlights

  • Monday, April 12: RAS@EAS workshop
  • Tuesday, April 13:  AE2020 starts with opening session, student spotlight and plenary. Parallel sessions for the rest of the day and e-market.
  • Wednesday, April 14: AE2020 day 2 parallel sessions and e-market.
  • Thursday, April 15: AE2020 final day, with sessions, e-poster awards and and e-market.

Key dates

  • January 31: New deadline for abstract submission
  • February 28: Early bird registration deadline


Interactive for attendees

Gavin Burnell, outgoing EAS president and AE2020 steering committee chair said: “Taking this decision now, six months ahead of the date, will allow us to prepare and configure the event so that it can be successful and interactive for attendees.

“This early announcement and the extension to the abstract deadline will also assure authors that they will have a chance to present their work and will position AE2020 against the many other online events taking place this year and early next.”

Recorded presentations

The EAS said that organising parallel sessions with pre-recorded presentations will not only reduce the risk for technical problems and ensure the smooth running of sessions, but means that all presentations (oral videos and eposters) will be available for a period after the event for attendees to see online.

This ensures that attendees will not miss a presentation that they would have otherwise missed with a busy programme in a physical event. During that period, contact with the presenter will also be facilitated, complementing the live Q&A during the conference days.

RAS workshop

EAS will also organise the planned RAS@EAS event as a one-day online workshop on April 12 before the conference starts. The workshop theme “Creating an Optimum Environment” will be a panel-based discussion organised in three sessions addressing three key questions: “How do we best approach disinfection?”, “Where are we going with monitoring & autonomy?” and “What are the most problematic interactions between fish & their environment?”

Each session will have an introductory presentation, followed by a moderated panel discussion. Registration for this event can be made separately, but all those registered for the full AE2020 event will be able to attend.

The event will once again include the EAS Student Spotlight Award, with short pitches from the finalists during the plenary session. As with the inaugural award at AE2019 in Berlin, the audience will decide the winner.

The EAS is still planning to hold the AE2021 event in Funchal, Madeira from October 4-7 and abstracts can also be submitted online for that event.