Guidelines for Sponsored Webinars and Conference Sessions
The Canadian Nutrition Society (CNS) organizes educational events and activities throughout the year that provide ideal learning opportunities to its members and the broad nutrition network. Webinars and conference sessions are two of these types of educational events.
Webinar and Conference Session Selection and Evaluation Criteria
Webinar topics are identified by the CNS Education Committee. In addition, the CNS Education Committee accepts webinar proposals from potential webinar sponsors. Conference sessions are identified through a multi-step process that includes a formal Call for Proposals to the CNS community. Conference session proposals are submitted by CNS members from all areas, including industry and potential conference sponsors. All conference proposals are reviewed for content and selected by the CNS Conference Organizing Committee.
Webinar and conference session proposals are evaluated based on the following criteria:
- Relevance to the CNS member network that includes but is not limited to healthcare professionals, academia/researchers, government/policy makers, industry professionals, other NGOs, trainees.
- Addresses topics of interest that have been identified by CNS committees, members, conference/webinar participants.
- Includes evidenced-based, balanced information based on published science.
Sponsored Webinar and Sponsored Session Guidelines
If a CNS Webinar or Conference Session has a sponsor connected to it, the following guidelines must be met:
- The CNS Education Committee must approve all speakers based on their expertise of the subject matter.
- The webinar/conference session title and description must match the content that is being presented and has been pre-reviewed by the CNS Education or CNS Conference Organizing Committee.
- CNS will include recognition that the webinar(s)/conference session is being sponsored in all promotions, on the CNS website, at the beginning and end of all webinars/conference sessions, and on the webinar/conference evaluation.
- Industry sponsors must not have a role in the content development of the webinar/conference session.
- Each speaker is required to include a "Disclosures" slide in the presentation deck; each speaker must verbally mention these disclosures at the opening of the talk.
- To support a balanced discussion/ viewpoint and to minimize the possibility for real or perceived conflict of interest, researchers employed or contracted by the industry sponsor will not be approved as presenters during a sponsored session.
- A moderator/chair will be identified by CNS. The moderator role will be to introduce the webinar/conference session and speakers, and to lead the Q&A session. For webinars, the moderator will review all questions being submitted and will select the questions to be put forward to the speaker(s).
- The invitation to speakers and all coordination must be conducted by the CNS staff member or the webinar/conference session chair.
- All speakers must disclose any real or potentially perceived conflict of interest on a slide at the beginning of the webinar/conference session. Adequate time must be spent to clearly present this information in a meaningful way.
- Research findings must not be shared for the purpose of promoting a specific brand/product. Any mention of specific brands/products must be discussed and approved by CNS in advance.
- Speakers/moderators should refrain from mentioning specific company names during a talk, panel discussion or Q & A period. Should a question be submitted that names a company or product, the question should be paraphrased or dismissed.
- Any materials developed by the sponsor to promote the webinar or conference session must be approved by CNS.
- Research being presented should be primarily from published research. If the research is not yet peer-reviewed it should be indicated as such and pre-approved by CNS.
- CNS will disseminate webinar/conference evaluations electronically following each webinar. The evaluation will include the question “Did you perceive, or were you affected by, any commercial bias during the webinar.”
- CNS webinars, conference sessions or other educational events will include the following disclaimer: The views expressed by speakers or other third parties in CNS webinars, events and/or conferences are those of the speaker or third-party and not necessarily of CNS.
CNS Commitment to working with industry partners and sponsors
CNS is committed to maintaining responsible and transparent processes in all of its activities. As with all of our sector stakeholders, CNS considers and values industry partner and sponsor input, but retains all programmatic and editorial control. All CNS conference and webinar programming, educational initiatives and award recipients are reviewed and approved by respective CNS committees. To view our Prerequisite, Governance and Operational Principles – CLICK HERE.
Scientific Integrity Principles and Best Practices
CNS participated as a member of the Scientific Integrity Consortium, a group of approximately 30 organizations that came together across scientific disciplines with diverse backgrounds, perspectives and differences in approaches to scientific integrity strategies. The Consortium agreed on the importance of a community consensus and alignment around the necessity for scientific integrity standards and their content. The CNS has officially endorsed the Scientific Integrity Principles and Best Practices and uses them to guide and manage our collaboration with relevant stakeholders.
For questions or discuss any of part of these Sponsored Webinar and Conference Session Guidelines, please contact:
CNS Executive Director
613-482-8020 ext. 1