Conference 2018

Symposium Announcement

12th Southern African Plant Breeding Symposium

11-15th March 2018

Gateway Hotel, Umhlanga Ridge, Durban, KwaZulu-Natal

Big Data and Breeding Technologies

The 12th Southern African Plant Breeding Association (SAPBA) symposium is to be held from 11th-15th March 2018 at the Gateway Hotel, Umhlanga. The hotel is conveniently attached to Gateway Theatre of shopping, close to the airport, several beaches and good golf courses.

Given the multidisciplinary nature of Plant Breeding a diverse group of international and national speakers have been invited. More information regarding the plenary speakers will be made available on the SAPBA website as these are finalised.  We would like to encourage groupings and/or institutions that would like to sponsor and/or nominate plenary speakers to contact the symposium secretariat.

Food security remains one of the biggest challenges we face today. The need to produce more food, with less inputs, drives the development and discovery of new products, practices and technologies. The technologies fueling our data capabilities are improved computational abilities, data storage, communication and sensing. Through these technologies, vast amounts of data are collected and analysed with the objective of making better decisions at finer and finer scales.

Big Data therefore became the buzzword. Simply put, Big Data represents huge amounts of data, both structured and unstructured which cannot be analysed using traditional tools or methods. The SAPBA’s executive committee thus thought it prudent that the 2018 symposium will be themed “Big Data and Breeding Technologies”.

Several sponsors have already come aboard and we would like to thank them. The organising committee is however still soliciting sponsorship from stakeholders and several opportunities still exist. Interested parties can contact the symposium secretariat for more details.

The cost of the attendance has been kept as low as possible with favourable room rates (starting at R1511.70 per room per night, including breakfast for two) that have been negotiated at the symposium venue. Symposium registration costs are kept as low as possible starting at R1 880. (Gala dinner excluded). To boost the attendance and participation by students, full time registered students who successfully submit an oral presentation will be granted free registration. Registration fees for full time registered students who successfully submit poster contributions will be reduced to R1 000. Further exciting incentives for students attending and presenting at the conference will be announced in the next couple of weeks.

Details of the scientific program, presentation and poster formats, lodging options and other information will be made available as they are finalised.


Online registration opens 8 September 2017

Deadline for abstract submission for oral contributions 8 November 2017

Early registration payment cut-off 8 December 2017

Deadline for abstract submission for posters 8 December 2017

Oral abstract acceptance confirmation 8 December 2017

Poster abstract acceptance confirmation 8 January 2018

Late registration cut-off 8 February 2018

Electronic payment for registration cut-off 8 February 2018

Final programme announcement 8 February 2018

All correspondence (registration, registration fees and payments, and abstract submission) or general inquiries (including membership applications) can be addressed to the symposium secretariat.

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