2018 WASTECON® Call for Proposals

The 2018 WASTECON® Call for Proposals will close on March 19, 2018, for the conference at Gaylord Opryland on August 20–23. Please take this time to begin preparing your proposal. The conference theme is Sound Ideas. This theme calls for innovative solutions with which the waste and resource management industry must respond to issues we are facing every day. We expect proposals to take on some of the most urgent disruptions that are effecting the advancement of resource management.

Registration and travel expenses: Speakers at WASTECON® are considered attendees of the event and are expected to pay their own travel expenses and the appropriate member or non-member registration fee.


In the proposal submission system, you will need to provide the following information:

You or the person on whose behalf you are submitting the proposal.

Provide a short bio (200 words or fewer), not a resume. Please have the bios ready in a Word document to cut and paste into the proposal submission form.

A “head shot” of 1MB or larger (in JPEG format) is preferred. Please make sure there is adequate space around the face to fit a circular frame.

Select ONE format for your proposal. SWANA may ask you to present in a different format than the one you selected, depending on available agenda space. [limit one]

  • Traditional Lecture:
    Presentation with PowerPoint. A very limited number of this format will be selected. Maximum of one Lead Speaker and one co-presenter.
  • Poster Presentation (Case Studies):
    Organizational and personal stories of success, failure and lessons learned. Maximum of one speaker and one co-speaker.
  • 360 Panel:
    Multiple speakers provide a range of approaches to a single challenge. Maximum of one Lead Speaker and three co-presenters.
  • Debate:
    Opposing sides of an issue try to persuade each other to change positions. Maximum of one Lead Speaker and three co-presenters.
  • Crowdsource Your Solution:
    Use contributions from the public to a project without compensation. Are you facing a challenge? Draw on expertise of the WASTECON crowd for ideas on how to solve a problem. Maximum of one Lead Speaker and one co-presenter.
  • Walkabout:
    Not interested in being a talking head? Are you more of a small group conversationalist? Does sitting in classrooms for hours of sessions make you antsy? You're not alone. You can rescue a few of your fellow attendees by leading a walkabout! Propose a topic that you will lead on a casual walk around the conference grounds. Maximum of one Lead Speaker and one co-presenter.

Choose the track(s) for which your proposal is best aligned. (You may select ONE track. If you want your proposal considered in more than one track, you MUST resubmit it under the new track.)

  • The Internet of Things (IoT)/Innovation Trends
    • IoT-New Technologies
    • IoT-Waste Processing
    • IoT-Big Data
    • IoT-Conversion Technologies
    • IoT-Investment in Technologies
  • Global/International Waste Topics
    • Global-China/Recycling Markets
    • Global-Food Waste
    • Global-Circular Economy
    • Global-Marine Litter
  • Rural Issues
    • Rural-Collection & Transfer Challenges
    • Rural-Metrics/Measurement
    • Rural-Increasing Recycling Rates
    • Rural-Policy-making
    • Rural-Public/Private Partnerships
    • Rural-Food Waste
    • Rural-Organics
  • Importance/Value of Communication
    • Comm-Social Media & Other Communication Tools
    • Comm-Metrics/Measurement
    • Comm-Increasing Participation Rates
    • Comm-Public Relations
  • Human Resource Trends
    • HR-Mentoring
    • HR-Value of the Profession
    • HR-Generations
    • HR-Diversity Issues
    • HR-Job Creation
  • Waste Challenges and Solutions
    • This option is for proposals that do not fit any of the defined tracks.
    • A very limited number of STELLAR proposals may be accepted submitted under this option.

The title should be 10 words or fewer.

The title will help promote your presentation to both the reviewers and, if your proposal is accepted, to the audience. Avoid a title structure that is a few words followed by a colon and then more words. Your title should hint at what people will learn without cramming in the entire idea. Show management reserves the right to edit session titles. Use the summary (next item) to develop the title's concept and why people should want to hear what you have to say.

The summary should be 200 words or fewer.

The summary should answer why you should be considered as a speaker on this topic.

The proposal description should be 200 words or fewer.

Provide enough information about the content of your presentation for reviewers to use in determining whether your proposal fits the conference theme and track you requested. No sales pitches for products or services, please. Conference participants are vocal in their displeasure with presentations that appear to be sales promotions.

Complete the following sentence with three things the audience will learn from your presentation. After attending my session the participants will learn…

Please provide permission to publish your presentation in SWANA’s eLibrary for the audience to use as a reference. NOTE: Refusal to grant permission to publish means you will NOT be invited to present.

Got all your information together? Ready to submit?