2017 Conference-Call for Abstracts

2017 PHABC Conference

Facing a Changing World: Transformative Leadership and Practice

November 16-17, 2017
Sutton Place Hotel 845 Burrard Street,
Vancouver, BC V6Z 2K6

Call for Abstracts

ONLINE SUBMISSION: Opens August 15th

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SUBMISSION DEADLINE: September 30th, 2017 at 5:00 pm

The Public Health Association of British Columbia will host its annual conference for 2017 November 16-17 at the Sutton Place Hotel in Vancouver.  This year’s theme is “Facing a Changing World: Transformative Leadership and Practice”and its application through public health topics such as: Child and Youth Health; Indigenous Health; Planetary Health; Healthy Built Environments; and Immigrant and Refugee Health.In its ideal form, transformational leadership and practice creates valuable and positive change within individuals and social systems.

Transformative practice derives from the theories of transformational leadership. Transformative practice is the applied model which uses the facets of transformational leadership to create a bottom-up system where communication is facilitated between team members and team leads in order to build strong, and aligned personal and group goals.

A key function of transformational leadership and practice is to provide an empowering system that encourages group members to take initiative, innovate and transform into leaders themselves.

During this conference we are going to be applying transformational leadership and practice within a public health model by merging the facets of transformational leadership with the components of a collective impact framework. This merging of constructs brings us to our conference theme which we are naming “Transformative Leadership and Practice”.

This two-day conference is a unique combination of key-note presentations, case studies, symposia and hands on workshops that dive into the meaning of transformative practice and social innovation and its applications across multiple sectors in public health. The PHABC Conference provides the opportunity for professionals throughout the province to meet, mingle, and learn.


To create a forum for deliberative dialogue and respectful exchange of ideas related to transformative leadership and practice and collective impact.


  1. Further define transformational leadership and practice within public health.
  2. Consider new opportunities to meet the changing public health needs within communities
  3. Examine ways to achieve a shared goal of population health improvement
  4. Examine innovative solutions particularly those with a collective impact approach.

Conference Sub-Themes:

The conference will explore how transformative leadership and practice, collaboration,community engagement, and impactful innovative solutions are featured in four topic areas critical to public health:

  1. Child and Youth Development
  2. Immigrant Health
  3. Indigenous Health
  4. Healthy Built Environment

If you have research or are part of a promising practice you think is transformational we would welcome your contribution to our dialogue.  The conference organizers request that you submit abstracts that align with one or more of the four sub-themes of the conference; however, additional sub-themes may also be identified from the selected abstracts. We encourage submissions from the full spectrum of public health and endeavour to be inclusive of quality submissions even if they do not fit under the above sub-themes.

Conference Format

The conference will include:

  • Plenary sessions to stimulate thinking about the conference theme
  • Workshops to build skills and strategies
  • Symposia to consider important issues in public health
  • Oral presentations to present findings related to the conference theme and sub-themes
  • Poster presentations to present findings related to the conference theme and sub-themes
  • Facilitated World Café discussions to stimulate reflection and feedback related tothe conference theme and sub-themes
  • Annual meeting of the Public Health Association of BC
  • Networking session to facilitate discussion between and within networks and communities of practice
  • Community event aimed at engaging the public

Call for Abstracts

Individuals and groups are invited to submit abstracts for one or more of the following presentation format(s):

  • Oral presentation (15 minutes + question and answer)
  • Poster presentation
  • World Café facilitated discussion (3 x 30 minutes)
  • Workshop (1.5 hours)
  • Symposia (1.5 hours)

Based on the restricted opportunities for oral presentations, we strongly encourage applicants to consider structuring their proposals, particularly if they are practice-based research, around the poster format. The conference will provide opportunities for ‘rapid-fire’ poster presentations where selected posters are highlighted and presenters will have a short opportunity to introduce their posters to an audience. In addition, there will be organized poster ‘walk-abouts’, designed to structure maximum interaction with the presenters and their work.

By submitting an abstract for a World Café session, please indicate how you would lead a 30-minute in-depth discussion – what your key question, theme or issue would be – and how you would engage a small number of participants and build upon shared ideas with each table rotation. It is suggested that approximately 5-10 minutes be spent setting the stage for discussion with the remaining time for participant interaction and feedback.

World Café sessions can be used as a means of helping with brainstorming, exploratory or evaluative processes. It would be excellent to have a variety of research, theory, programs and practice represented in the Cafe from local, national and global perspectives.

Workshops and Symposia are intended to be an opportunity to discuss a particular topic related to the conference themes in detail and/or to build skills or resources in relation to a conference theme.

Abstract Submission Guidelines

Those submitting individual abstracts will be required to submit the following information:

  • Speaker contact details
  • List of co-authors, if applicable
  • Presentation format (oral presentation, poster presentation, World Café, symposia, workshop)
  • Conference sub-theme
  • Presentation title 
  • An abstract of 250 words or less

If your abstract describes primary or secondary research, you are encouraged to submit a structured abstract covering: background, methods, results and discussion/conclusions.

Those submitting practice-based abstracts are encouraged to includeinformation on: Purpose, focus/content, significance for the sub-theme and target audience.

Evaluation Criteria

Due to limited space and the need for the most relevant and highest quality program, the Scientific Program Committee (SPC) has outlined several criteria by which the quality and relevance of abstracts will be judged.

  1. Action: Abstracts that not only emphasize, but also outline how they have, or intend to address ‘action’ in relations to the themes of the Conference will be judged as more relevant.
  2. Innovation: While the SPC will consider familiar interventions and approaches, it encourages new ideas and new modes of action be presented in order to foster debate and dialogue about the most promising ways forward.
  3. Partnerships, Collaboration and Intersectorality: We are particularly interested in novel and successful attempts to involve consumers, community members, multiple sectors, multiple levels of government, community-university partnerships and other forms of collaboration aimed at addressing systems change.
  4. Assets and Strengths: The SPC encourages submission of abstracts related to a variety of public health approaches to addressing the themes of the Conference; however, it is particularly interested in approaches that explicitly focus on reservoirs of strength and resilience, even in the most disadvantaged communities, as ‘assets’ for health.

If you have any questions, please contact Christina Harding at coordinator@phabc.org

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