Call for Presenters

The deadline for proposal submissions has passed. However, we are still accepting proposals for poster presentations.


In Detroit, neighbors are coming together to prevent and heal conflict and violence that has persisted for generations. They are becoming active stewards of their community and building better relationships. People in this city want their children to be safe in the community and successful in school. By learning the skills of restorative practices, they are making this dream a reality.

Strengthening the Spirit of Community is the first IIRP World Conference in Detroit. Local community members, education, justice, social service and health practitioners and researchers will join those from around the world to share successes and challenges. Together, we will collaborate on a rich learning experience to make a better city and a better world.

Submit a proposal

We are seeking proposals for breakout sessions and poster presentations. Breakout session proposals should be in one of three formats: Inform (50 minutes), Teach (90 minutes) and Engage (90 minutes). While the conference is open to all topics related to the emerging social science of restorative practices, we will favor those proposals that explore the following topics:

  • school reform
  • civil rights
  • resolving neighborhood conflicts
  • racial disproportionality in school discipline
  • community-police relations
  • youth leading change
  • healing family issues
  • neighborhood leadership
  • creating bridges between youth and adults
  • community health

Important dates

  • The submission deadline is April 27 has been extended to May 4.
  • Applicants will be notified by May 18 May 25 about the selection committee’s decisions.
  • Accepted presenters must register and pay for the conference by June 8 June 15, so that the schedule can be finalized and promoted.
  • Because of the limited number of slots available for breakout sessions, we may ask some applicants to present a poster and/or to participate in a moderated panel discussion with others speaking on a similar topic.

Please note

  • Accepted presenters receive a reduced registration rate of $415 (discounted from the attendee early registration rate of $495).
  • No formal papers are required, but we encourage you to share your slides and handouts on our website/event app.
  • Presenters are responsible for their own travel and lodging.

Breakout session formats

If you are submitting a proposal for a breakout session, you will be asked to select one of these three formats:

  • Inform (50 minutes): Present information about an important project, study, program or story through lecture, presentation slides and/or video. An “Inform” session may include a brief amount of time for audience participation and questions.
  • Teach (90 minutes): Teach participants about a specific skill or process, or explore theory and concepts at a level deeper than the introductory. A “Teach” session should focus on meeting two or three learning objectives and may include a brief introductory and/or closing circle and a question and answer period.
  • Engage (90 minutes): Lead a discussion or facilitate a group process around a topic of interest related to restorative practices. An “Engage” session should explore the collective experience of participants as it relates to this topic, with no skill building or instructional elements.

Poster presentations

A poster session will be held on either the first or second day of the conference, during a “walking lunch” period of about 1.5 hours. Posters allow for presentation of topics in an informal, interactive environment. After proposals have been accepted, the IIRP will provide a template for presenters to design their own posters, and the IIRP will then produce the posters. During the session, all posters will be set up in a large room. Presenters will be expected to remain with their posters for the whole session to interact and answer questions from attendees.

Selection criteria

  • Relevance to the theme and the topics listed above
  • Quality and clarity of the session summary and learning objectives
  • Evaluates what worked, what didn’t, how and why, and enables attendees to apply the information to their own practice – not merely a description of a program, project or issue
  • Proposal received by submission deadline of April 27 May 4.

Completing the proposal form

Please read the following guidelines before completing the proposal form below.
We recommend that you record your answers in a text document before you complete the actual form.

You will need the following information:

About your session
  • Session format
    Choose one: Inform (50 minutes), Teach (90 minutes), Engage (90 minutes) or Poster Presentation.
  • Tracks
    Choose up to two: Schools, Justice, Family & Community, Workplaces & Leadership, Higher Education, Faith Communities, Other (specify).
  • Session title (max. 15 words)
    Aim for a title that is both descriptive and interesting.
  • Session summary (max. 300 words)
    Provide a summary of your session, as it should appear in the conference program. Attendees choose their sessions based on these summaries. For all breakout session and poster presentation proposals, clearly describe the information you will be presenting. In addition, for breakout session proposals, describe:

    • For an “Inform” session, any videos or other media that will be used.
    • For a “Teach” session, the skills and concepts that your participants will learn.
    • For an “Engage” session, the group process method you will use to explore this topic and for whom you think this conversation is most relevant.
  • Learning objectives (max. 100 words)
    Provide 2 or 3 learning objectives, describing what participants will know or be able to do after your session.
About the primary contact
  • Your first and last name
  • Your name as it should appear in the conference program. If desired, include middle name or initial and any preferred prefixes (e.g., Dr., Rev.) or suffixes (e.g., Jr., Ph.D., M.S.).
  • Email, phone, address
  • Brief biography (max. 100 words in a narrative format)
    Presenters’ bios are published in the conference program. Please include relevant information about your work, specify locales of programs and organizations mentioned and define abbreviations or acronyms.
Sample Presenter Bios

Award-winning graphic journalist Dan Archer is exploring the intersection of immersive technology and journalism through Empathetic Media, a new multimedia agency focusing on virtual, augmented reality and graphic journalism. Archer is a 2016 Tow Center and IVOH Fellow, 2014 Reynolds Journalism Institute Fellow and a 2011 Knight Journalism Fellow at Stanford University, where he also taught nonfiction graphic novel writing 2008-14. His work has been published by the BBC, CBC, Vice magazine, Fusion, San Francisco Public Press, American Public Media, Truthout and PBS, among others, and was featured in the BBC’s 2015 Future of News Report.

Borbála Fellegi, Ph.D., did her studies in social policy (ELTE, Budapest) and criminology (Cambridge, UK) and works as researcher, mediator, conference/peacemaking circle and family group conference (FGC) facilitator, trainer and university lecturer. Since 2015, Borbála has been a member of the faculty at the International Institute for Restorative Practices (IIRP) Graduate School. She is also the founder and executive director of the Foresee Research Group, established in 2008. She is the author of the book Towards Restoration and Peace, one of the first comprehensive studies on the implementation of restorative justice in Hungary.

Deirdre Kenny has 15 years experience working in Ireland and Africa with victims of sexual violence, covering the areas of HIV/AIDS, prostitution and trafficking, and clerical and familial sexual abuse. She is currently the advocacy director with One in Four, a non-governmental organization that professionally supports men and women who have experienced sexual violence, many of them during childhood. The aim is to reduce the incidence of sexual abuse by intervening in key areas of the cycle of abuse through psychotherapy, advocacy and prevention services.

About each co-presenter

  • First and last name
  • Name as it should appear in the conference program. If desired, include middle name or initial and any preferred prefixes (e.g., Dr., Rev.) or suffixes (e.g., Jr., Ph.D., M.S.).
  • Email, phone
  • Brief biography (max. 100 words in a narrative format)
    Presenters’ bios are published in the conference program. Please include relevant information about your co-presenter’s work, specify locales of programs and organizations mentioned and define abbreviations or acronyms.

Proposal form