CIfA conference FAQs

This FAQ resource answers many of the common questions we are asked about the annual CIfA conference. However, if you have a specific question please contact us at and we will be happy to help!

Who is it for?

The theme and sessions for CIfA conference are based on professional archaeology, promoting standards, good practice and innovation. The conference is for anyone who wishes to know more about these topics.

Find out more about what we mean by professional archaeology.

Sessions and papers

An open call for sessions is issued in the summer ahead of the conference based on the theme we have chosen.

The proposals are then shortlisted to bring them down to the number of slots we have available in the conference timetable.  

One the session topics are agreed we then issue an open call for papers.

Session organisers are responsible for selecting paper proposals which are most relevant for their session. Our guidance encourages session organisers to consider the diversity of speakers in terms of gender, ethnicity, career stage, geography, age or other underrepresented identities. We encourage diversity in the composition of our conference sessions in line with our Equal Opportunities Policy and encourage unique viewpoints, experiences, and perspectives from different disciplines.

Sessions are split into three different types:

Discussion (Traditional) – traditional paper format, with room for question and answers

Discussion (Seminar) – more open format, perhaps with one or two position papers, but with an emphasis on debate, discussion and outcomes  

Workshop - a training workshop where the organisers have identified specified learning outcomes linked to National Occupational Standards (NOS)

Fee pricing

The fee for conference contributes towards design, overheads , IT, staff costs and providing bursaries.

For CIfA2021 it also contributes towards the cost of the bespoke online platform; for face-to-face conferences this would instead be the cost of venue hire. You can watch our introductory video which highlights some of the features on the platform below or at CIfA2021 online: Annual Conference | Chartered Institute for Archaeologists

The conference is a very large 3-day event in the CIfA calendar and the cost of this is covered by delegates who attend rather than by all our members’ subscription fees. 

CIfA members are offered reduced rates compared to non-member delegates.

We are charging speakers a nominal admininistration fee to provide access to the Cadence platform. This will allow you to attend any of the sessions, workshops or socials (live or recorded) taking place on that day as well as the one you are speaking in so you can also benefit from the CPD available.

We offer a range of bursaries to support attendance at the conference.

You can find out more and how to apply for support at CIfA2021 online: bursary options.

Digital platform

The online platform we are using has all the session information and links in one place, so you can easily keep track of your sessions and simply click to join. You can choose which live sessions to attend and watch recordings of any that you miss. All recordings will also be exclusively available on the platform to conference delegates for 90 days. 

The platform also offers a range of other features to enhance networking, discussion and interaction, such as session chats before, during and following the session; an interactive social wall, a conference library as well as the ability to connect with other attendees to share contact details, to chat or to Zoom call any of your connections straight through the platform.

The platform is also available as an app so you can access the conference on the go from your phone or tablet.

You can find out more about the other features at CIfA2021 online: Annual Conference or view a video demonstration of the platform below.

Please visit our CIfA2021 platform page to find out more about the platform we'll be using for the conference. Here, you'll also be able to find instructions and view some short demonstration videos on:

  • logging into the portal
  • accessing a conference session
  • viewing a session recording

If you do however, have any further questions about the platform we'll be using or require any help with logging in or accessing the conference conference [at] (please contact us).

CIfA2021 is dedicated to providing a harassment-free conference experience for everyone, regardless of gender, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, age, religion, nationality, education, experience, career or speciality.

You can find out more about this and reporting inappropriate behaviour at CIfA2021 Digital Conference Harassment Policy.

Platform demonstration video

Explore our CIfA2021 conference platform below and find out more about some of the features including: viewing and joining a session, building your own schedule, submitting questions and session chat, viewing presenter profiles, viewing the attendee list, connecting to share contact details and how to Zoom call your connections through the platform: