Frequently Asked Questions

Abstract Submission

In the context of the 21th International AIDS Conference (AIDS 2016), an abstract is a stand-alone statement that briefly explains, in a non-repetitive style, the essential information of a study, research project, policy or programme.

The 21st International AIDS Conference (AIDS 2016) welcomes submission of abstracts for original contribution to the field in the following scientific tracks:

  • Track A: Basic and Translational Research
  • Track B: Clinical Research
  • Track C: Epidemiology and Prevention Research
  • Track D: Social and Political Research, Law, Policy and Human Rights
  • Track E: Implementation Research, Economics, Systems and Synergies with other Health and Development Sectors

Abstract submissions are open from 1 December 2015 to 4 February 2016 – 23:59 Central European Time. During this time period, abstracts will be accepted through the online submission form available on the conference website.

Detailed descriptions about the scope and objectives of each scientific track, as defined by the Scientific Programme Committee, can be found on the AIDS 2016 website.
The final deadline to submit the abstract is 4 February 2016 – 23:59 Central European Time.
Abstracts are intended to present scientific studies, research, programmes, policies, etc. highlighting both the methods or description and results or recommendations. If you are describing a study that is still in the planning stage, it would not be suitable for an abstract submission, unless the method that you will use is, for instance, of particular scientific interest. However, if your study is currently ongoing and you only have preliminary data, but it seems relevant or significant, please submit the abstract.

Late breaker submissions must be data of unquestioned significance. Data analyzed after the regular submission (4February 2016) should not be sent in as late breakers if the data do not meet an extremely high threshold of scientific merit. The percentage of abstracts selected for late breakers will depend on the number of submissions, but selection will certainly be more rigorous than for regular abstracts. A small number of late breaker abstracts will be accepted to be presented orally or as posters at the conference.

During their submission, authors will have to declare the reason why their abstract is a late breaker. The same submission rules apply for the late breaker abstracts as for the regular abstracts, but each presenting author may only present one late breaker abstract at the conference. The late breaker abstract submission will be open from 21 April to 12 May 2016.

An abstract consists of a title, author list and the abstract text. It can also include tables or graphs/images. Literature references should not be included.

AIDS 2016 offers two options for abstract submission:

Option 1
Suited for research conducted in all disciplines. Abstracts submitted under the first option should contain concise statements of:

  • Background: indicate the purpose and objective of the research, the hypothesis that was tested or a description of the problem being analysed or evaluated.
  • Methods: describe the study period / setting / location, study design, study population, data collection and methods of analysis used. 
  • Results: present as clearly and in as much detail as possible the findings / outcome of the study. Please summarize any specific results.  
  • Conclusions: explain the significance of your findings / outcomes of the study for HIV prevention, treatment, care and / or support, and future implications of the results.

Option 2
Suited for lessons learned through programme, project or policy implementation or management. Abstracts submitted under the second option should contain concise statements of:

  • Background: summarize the purpose, scope and objectives, of the programme, project or policy.  
  • Description: describe the programme, project or policy period / setting / location, the structure, key population (if applicable), activities and interventions undertaken in support of the programme, project or policy. 
  • Lessons learned: present as clearly and in as much detail as possible the methods / findings / outcomes of the programme, project or policy; include analytic approaches, evaluation of lessons learned and best practices with a succinct description of the methods used. In addition, please summarize any specific results that specifically support your conclusions of lessons learned and best practices. 
  • Conclusions/Next steps: explain the significance of the methods used and findings / outcomes of the programme, project or policy for HIV prevention, treatment, care and / or support, and future implications of the results.

Before submitting an abstract, you are asked to create a Conference Profile. One or several abstracts can be submitted through the Conference Profile.

To submit abstracts, please login into your Conference Profile and click on the "Abstract Submission" field in the Overview-tab. You will then see a link to enter the abstract submission system.

In the abstract submission system, please follow the steps 1 - 4 to create and submit your abstract:

  1. Select the track, category and country of research; enter your abstract title and text
  2. Enter the presenting author and co-authors (individually)
  3. Preview your abstract and check format and correctness
  4. Submit your abstract

To navigate in the abstract submission system, please use the next step buttons or the upper menu bar. For detailed instructions about the abstract submission system, please click on "HELP" in the upper menu bar.

After an abstract has been created, modifications can be made at any time until the submission deadline. After submission, the abstract submitter will receive a confirmation email. This email will contain the abstract reference number. Please refer to this reference number in all communications.

After an abstract has been created via the online Conference Profile, modifications can be made (even after submission) until the deadline. After making your modifications, you need to re-submit your abstract. No modifications will be accepted after the submission deadline.

A good abstract title is short, specific, representative and informative. It helps the reviewers categorize your abstract, and if accepted, it may help conference delegates find your session. The title should summarize your abstract without going into excessive details. Describe the topic clearly, including, for example, the population, country and issue of the research.

It is possible, but not mandatory, to include tables or graphs/images in the abstract.

A maximum of two tables/graphs in total can be included. Note that each graph/image (in JPG, GIF or PNG with ideally 600 dpi) counts as 50 words and a table counts as 5 words per row (50 words maximum)

Please create your table or upload your graph/image following the instructions in the abstract submission system. Place the table or graph/image into your abstract text and save the changes. Review the abstract preview-page to ensure that your table or graph/image displays properly.

There is no limit to the number of co-authors per abstract, although we strongly recommend the use of a Study Group Name for abstracts with a high number of co-authors.  A person can be listed as a co-author if he/she meets ALL the following criteria:

  1. made substantial contributions to concept and design, acquisition of data, or analysis and interpretation of data,
  2. drafted the abstract or revised it for intellectual content,
  3. approved the final version to be submitted.

If the abstract is accepted, the presenting authors are asked to disclose all financial and personal relationships between themselves and others that might be perceived by others as biasing their work. The conference organizer asks that all presenting authors disclose any conflict of interest at the time of presentation for the benefit of conference delegates. The purpose of this is to guarantee that all potential conflicts of interest are recognized and mechanisms to resolve them prior to the conference are implemented.

Material presented in abstracts should not violate any copyright laws. If figures/graphics/images have been taken from sources not copyrighted by the author, it is the author’s sole responsibility to secure the rights from the copyright holder in writing to reproduce those figures/graphics/images for both worldwide print and web publication. All reproduction costs charged by the copyright holder must be borne by the author.

All submitted abstracts will go through a blind peer-review process carried out by an international review committee. Each abstract will be reviewed by at least three reviewers. The Scientific Programme Committee makes the final selection of abstracts to be included in the conference programme.

The highest-scoring abstracts will be selected for presentation in oral abstract sessions or in a slightly shorter oral poster discussion session. The majority of the posters will be displayed in the Poster Exhibition.

The methodology or study design presented in your abstract should be appropriate to address the purpose and objectives. Results or lessons learned should be clearly presented and support the conclusions. In addition, the findings should contribute to the advancement of knowledge and development in the field.

If English is not your native language we strongly recommend that you have your abstract reviewed by a native English speaker working in your field before submission.

You may check the common reasons for abstract rejection in the abstract submission guidelines. You may also review examples of abstracts from previous conferences. If you need additional support, the Abstract Mentor Programme offers free, expert feedback to young or less-experienced researchers interested in submitting an abstract for AIDS 2016. The programme is open from 16 November 2015 to 18 January 2016. Find out more by visiting the AMP webpage.

Notification of acceptance or rejection will be sent to the submitting (corresponding) author by mid-April.

To obtain certificates for abstracts accepted in the conference, please contact [email protected].

The submission of the abstract constitutes the authors’ consent to publish. If the abstract is accepted, the authors agree that their abstract can be published under Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported (CC BY 3.0). The license allows third parties to share the published work (copy, distribute, transmit) and to adapt it for any purposes, under the condition that IAS 2015 and authors are given credit, and that in the event of reuse or distribution, the terms of this license are made clear. Authors retain the copyright of their abstracts, with first publication rights granted to the IAS.

An electronic abstract book will be available free of charge on the conference website. The traditional paper abstract book will not be produced for AIDS 2016.

If accepted, your abstract may be published on IAS websites, such as the AIDS 2016 programme-at-a-glance, and other conference materials, the IAS abstract archive, the Journal of the International AIDS Society (JIAS), etc.


The registration fee for regular delegates, students/post-docs and youth delegates includes entry to up to three pre-conferences (taking place on 16 and 17 July), all main conference sessions (18-22 July 2016), the exhibition and poster area, and the opening and closing sessions. For more information regarding your registration fee click here.

To encourage broad participation in the conference, registration cost is based on a two-tiered fee structure with lower registration fees for delegates from upper-middle-income countries, lower-middle-income countries and low-income countries (based on the World Bank Classification), and students/post-docs/youth delegates. To determine what your registration fee click here.

AIDS 2016 has made a few changes to its registration, which include:

  • Reduced registration cost: The registration fee has been reduced by up to 23 per cent based on a delegate’s country of residence.
  • Extended early registration deadline: Extending the Early Registration deadline to 28 April, 24:00 CET at the newly decreased registration rate.

Over the past several months, recent shifts in global exchange rates have significantly lowered the value of many currencies against the U.S. Dollar. The ripple effect of this economic shift strikes directly at the heart of our theme: Access Equity Rights Now. As part of our commitment to accessibility and in response to these global economic shifts, AIDS 2016 made these changes to ensure broader participation to the conference. For more information click here.

Yes. All individuals who have already paid the conference fee at the original rate will be refunded the difference. All individuals who have already registered prior to this change have been notified directly by the Registration Department. If you have questions, please email [email protected].

No, the pre-conference pass will stay the same cost of USD$250 for the pre-conference meetings on the 16 and 17 July. For more information regarding pre-conferences click here.  

No. Your attendance is not confirmed until payment has been received in full.

All registrations for AIDS 2016 must be submitted through the online registration form . Before you can register, you need to create a conference profile from which you can enter the registration system. If you already have a conference profile from previous IAS or International AIDS Conferences you will be able to use the same login details.

There is no registration fee for accredited media representatives. However, to be accredited as media representative, media credentials must be provided and approved by the AIDS 2016 Conference Secretariat. Due to number restrictions, preference will be given to traditional media and credible online news sources. Further information can be found here.

Group registration is applicable to the registration of five persons or more. The registration fees are the same as for individual delegates.

No, payments need to be made in USD only, either by credit card or by bank transfer.

The Early Registration deadline has been extended until 28 April, 24:00 CET. Registration will then increase, further information can be found here.

Notification of cancellation must be made in writing and sent to the AIDS 2016 Registration Department. If the written notification of cancellation is received on or before 28 April 2016, 50 per cent of the registration fee will be refunded. We regret that no refund requests will be accepted after this date.

In order to obtain a Letter of Invitation, you first need to register for the conference, pay in full and have any required supporting documents submitted and approved (if applicable) before a Letter of Invitation will be sent to your preferred email address. The Letter of Invitation does not financially or otherwise obligate the conference organizers in any way. All expenses incurred in relation to the conference and immigration requirements are your sole responsibility. For more information, please see the visa information page and the Letter of Invitation page.


The scholarship programme was open to everyone around the world. Following the Conference Coordinating Committee (CCC) scholarship selection criteria, priority has been given to those whose participation will help enhance their work in their own communities, to those who are able to assist in the transfer of skills and knowledge acquired at the conference and to those whose abstracts, workshops and/or global village and youth activity(-ies) have been selected.

Financial assistance has been offered to delegates from resource-limited settings and communities, key populations disproportionally burdened by HIV, people living with HIV, young people, researchers and students to help them attend.

For AIDS 2014 in Melbourne more than 7,200 applications were received and 460 scholarships were awarded. We have succeeded in doubling this number for AIDS 2016. A limited number of scholarships were also available for media representatives from around the world.

Although every attempt has been made to assist as many people as possible, the number of scholarships was limited.

Additional support is now being provided by the IAS Educational Fund to advocates, clinicians and service providers working in the field of HIV and AIDS. To learn more, please visit the IAS Educational Fund webpage.

The AIDS 2016 Scholarship Programme is now closed and cannot accept any more applications. Nonetheless, additional support is now being provided by the IAS Educational Fund to advocates, clinicians and service providers working in the field of HIV and AIDS. To learn more, please visit the IAS Educational Fund webpage.

If you no longer need the scholarship, please log on your conference profile and click on "decline the scholarship" under the "Scholarships" tab located in "Overview". This will allow us to transfer this scholarship to someone else in the same region.

Global Village and Youth Programme

The Global Village is a diverse and vibrant space where community gathers from all over the world to meet, share and learn from each other. It is a space for community to demonstrate the application of science and good leadership. It is also a space that invites conference participants to see how science translates into community action and intervention.

The Global Village promotes networking between north and south, east and west and provides a space for displays, discussions and performances from throughout the world, highlighting HIV-related issues, concerns and priorities facing various HIV-affected communities. The Global Village is open to the general public and conference delegates and admission is free.

At AIDS 2016 young people will play an active role in all aspects of the conference. The Youth Programme will include a variety of activities designed for and by young people including cultural and educational performances, presentations, workshops and panel discussions. The Youth Pavilion within the Global Village will host most of the youth related activities and will provide spaces for young people to network, collaborate and showcase achievements from around the world.

While the dedicated Youth Programme aims to provide a platform for young people to participate in youth-specific activities at the conference, one of the key objectives of the programme is to also promote the value of intergenerational exchange between older and younger populations of people involved in the global response to HIV. In this way we encourage all young participants to engage in all parts of the conference program as well as youth-specific activities.

Onsite interpreting and translation services will not be offered, however those primary organizers who wish to engage interpreters or translators for their programme activity, can do so at the expense of the organization which they are representing at AIDS 2016.

Travel and accommodation expenses must be covered by participants. We encourage applicants to secure resources to cover the cost of travel and accommodation through external sources. If no other funding is available, there is the option of applying for an international scholarship from the IAS to attend the conference. Visit the AIDS 2016 Scholarships page for more information. Applications via the International Scholarships Programme close on the 12 February 2016.

There are no funds available to cover transporting materials or set up costs. Shipment of goods as well as the set-up of activities is at the activity organizer's expense. Advice on shipping will be provided, once successful applicants accept their invitation to run their activity in the Global Village and Youth Programme at AIDS 2016.

A successful Global Village and Youth Programme application does not guarantee access to the whole conference programme. Successful applicants will need to register online to access the conference. Please check the conference website for more information on the registration process. The Global Village space is open and free of cost to conference delegates and the general public.

This depends on the type of activity. You will find details regarding sizes of activity areas in the application form for Global Village activities and in the Global Village and Youth Programme submission guidelines.

The Global Village is a space to present activities from communities worldwide. With the exception of Marketplace Booths, it is not a fundraising-event. It is, however, a great opportunity to get in touch with donors and leaders, to network and to exchange experiences.

Selection criteria are described in the Global Village and Youth Programme submission guidelines.

All proposals submitted for the Global Village and Youth Programme will be reviewed by a team of nominated reviewers who will score applications based on a blind scoring system. The programme activity reviewers are your peers; people living with HIV, scientists, activists, policymakers, health care workers, community activists, educators and other people who work in areas relating to HIV. Following the review period, the Global Village and Youth Programme Working Group will meet with staff from the IAS to finalise the programme for all Global Village and Youth Programme related activities.

Notifications will be circulated to successful and unsuccessful applicants around mid - April 2016.

The Global Village will be located at the Durban Exhibition Centre; situated on Walnut Road, directly opposite the Durban ICC. The Global Village space will be open to conference delegates and the general public.

Volunteer at AIDS 2016

Volunteers must be at least 18 years old (as of 15th July 2016), fluent in English and be able to commit to a minimum of three half-day shifts from 13th July to 22nd July 2016.

An Online Volunteer Application Form will be available from 1st April 2016. The IAS Volunteer Department will only accept applications through this online form. Applications by e-mail, fax, or letter will be refused.

The AIDS 2016 Volunteer Department will start reviewing applications in May and will then notify successful applicants. Volunteers who apply after 28th April will be notified of their acceptance 20 days after successfully submitting the Volunteer Application Form.

Volunteers who have a maximum availability to volunteer from 13th to 22nd July 2016 will be prioritized.

After confirming the suggested timetable through the Online Volunteer Portal, volunteers will then receive their final schedule within 10 days. Please note that the scheduling process will start towards the end of May 2016.

Yes. However, persons seeking to volunteer at AIDS 2016 will be required to meet South African customs and immigration requirements for visitors. Unfortunately, the conference secretariat is unable to offer any financial assistance and volunteers are responsible for their own accommodation and travel costs. It is the sole responsibility of the volunteer to take care of his/her visa requirements.

Volunteers will have access to the daily conference sessions when not on duty (usually volunteers get a morning or an afternoon shift). They will receive a volunteer T-shirt and will get a free lunch. Furthermore, volunteers will have the possibility to gain international experience at the world's largest conference on any global health or development issue and gain international experience at an exciting event!

A Certificate of Appreciation will be downloadable after the conference through the Online Volunteer Portal.

Applications close once the number of volunteers needed is reached. We therefore encourage you to apply as soon as the Volunteer Application Form is online (1st April 2016). Once the number is reached, it will be announced on our website.

If you have registered as a regular AIDS 2016 Delegate before 1st of April 2016 and your application as a volunteer has been accepted, we will look into the options available to us. Please contact the Volunteer Team about this at [email protected].

It depends on the activity the volunteer is selected for. Activities can vary between 6 and 8 hours a day. In order to allow the volunteer to attend sessions during the day, we try to schedule volunteer shifts either in the morning (06:30-14:00) or in the afternoon (13:00-20:30).

You can join us on Facebook or look for “AIDS Conference Volunteers”.

Hotels - booked via your conference profile

To make a hotel booking, please follow the steps below:

  1. Log-in to your conference profile. If you do not have a profile yet, please create one.
  2. Select the Accommodation Booking tab.
  3. Follow the Click here to book accommodation link.
  4. Enter your check-in and check-out dates. Hotels available over your requested dates will then display.
  5. Upon selecting a hotel, the website will guide you through the remaining steps of the booking process.

Upon making your reservation, you will receive an acknowledgement email specifying your reservation details. Please ensure you enter your contact email address correctly and make sure you fully complete the final step of the reservation process by accepting the Terms & Conditions and clicking on the Submit button. If you do not receive an acknowledgement email (in your inbox or junk mail folder) within 24 hours, please contact us to verify if the reservation has been successfully received.

The hotel may have recently sold out or we do not have rooms available on particular dates that you are searching for (e.g. if you are looking for an early arrival or late departure). Please email us at [email protected] with the hotel name and your requested check-in/check-out dates so that we can check availability for you.

Please contact us at [email protected] with the number of rooms needed, check-in/check-out dates, and hotel preferences for further information.

Daily breakfast is included in the rate.

Transportation is not included in the room rate. However, a transportation pass is included within your registration fee. Please see Delegate Transport for more information.

There are two common reasons why your credit card payment may be declined:

  1. Your bank/credit card company is blocking the charge. Banks often block foreign charges for security reasons. In this case, you need to confirm with them that the charge by A111 Power of Conference Service in Vancouver, Canada is authorized and should be allowed by them. After they have authorized the transaction, you can try making your booking again.
  2. Your billing address is incorrect. If your billing address is different from your conference profile address, please click the ‘Billing Address’ checkbox when entering your credit card information. This will allow you to enter an alternate address.

A deposit payment of 400 USD is required in order to hold your booking and full payment is due by 25 May, 2016. Reservations that have not been paid in full will be cancelled at this deadline.

You will receive an acknowledgement email with your booking details and credit card payment information immediately after submitting your reservation.

Invoices/payment confirmations are issued regularly and are sent to the email address provided in your conference profile after payment has been received. Please note that payments made via bank transfer and AMEX can take approximately a week before they are received to our account.

To pay your remaining balance by credit card, please refer to the acknowledgement email you received immediately after you made your booking. Within this email, you will find a Change Request link/button which will allow you to make changes and pay your remaining balance by credit card. Please click on the Make a Payment button at the top, right of the screen. You will then enter a secure credit card payment screen where you can pay your balance.

If you no longer have your acknowledgement email, you can request another by following these steps:

  1. Sign in to your conference profile
  2. Under the Accommodation Booking tab, follow the Click here to add or edit accommodation link
  3. Click the Existing Reservation button on the top, left corner
  4. Enter your email address and last name. A new acknowledgement email will then be sent to you.

A111 Power of Conference Service LTD.
Bank name and address:
Royal Bank of Canada.
PO Box 700 – 200 Birch Ave
100 Mile House, B.C.
V0K 2E0 Canada
Branch: 003
Account No:  4001095
Local Clearing Code/Transit code: 04120

Please mention as payment reference: AIDS 2016, delegate name, and reservation ID.

Payment at the hotel is not possible. Full pre-payment is required by 25 May, 2016 and unpaid reservations will be cancelled at this deadline.

To makes changes to your reservation, please refer to the acknowledgement email you received immediately after you made your booking. Within this email, you will find a Change Request link/button to make changes to your reservation.

If you no longer have your acknowledgement email, you can request another by following these steps:

  1. Sign in to your conference profile
  2. Under the Accommodation Booking tab, follow the Click here to add or edit accommodation link
  3. Click the Existing Reservation button on the top, left corner
  4. Enter your email address and last name. A new acknowledgement email will then be sent to you.

The AIDS 2016 Accommodation Department takes all reservations and provides the specific details and guest names to the hotels just prior to the conference, which is why your reservation will not yet appear in the hotel’s system. You can make changes to your booking via the change request link/button in your acknowledgement email or by contacting us directly - [email protected].