Call for Proposals

The Pittsburgh Racial Justice Summit (PRJS) Planning Committee welcomes and invites you to submit workshop and panel proposals for PRJS 2020 happening on Saturday, January 25, 2020 at the Pittsburgh Theological Seminary.

“1619-2020: Decolonize Our Histories to Reclaim Our Humanity” is the summit theme.

Our committee seeks to bring together activists, organizers, and educators with a depth and breadth of experience working toward racial justice at local, national, or global levels. We aim to provide workshops and panel discussions that critically investigate the centuries-long and global negative impact of white supremacy and colonization on communities of color and indigenous peoples in the United States and worldwide. Importantly, workshop facilitators and panelists should be well-equipped to provide a critical perspective on modern racial justice issues that will lead to clear action toward decolonizing racial, social, political, economic, and cultural power structures. Additionally, workshops and panels should facilitate the collective reclamation of the humanity of individuals and communities who have had theirs denied or stripped away through the exploitative violence of colonization.

Competitive workshop and panel proposals will be evaluated based on the following criteria and should show clear evidence of:

  1. A critical understanding of colonization, how it has caused widespread dehumanization and exploitation throughout global and local history, and its link to modern racial justice issues,
  2. Facilitator(s) and Panelist(s)’ expertise and/or their history of racial justice work,
  3. Critical examination of historical and modern racial issues, including but not limited to: social, economic, political, immigration, and environmental justice,
  4. Timeliness and social relevance of workshop and/or panel topics,
  5. Deep consideration of workshop and panel goals and outcomes (e.g., What will attendees specifically learn or be able to do after workshop and panel participation?), and
  6. Immediate and sustainable actions to take beyond the summit.

Please use the links below to submit your workshop or panel proposals.

Submit your Workshop Proposal here

Submit your Panel Proposal here

 


Application Guidelines

We recommend that you have the following information and materials prepared and readily available to ensure a quick and complete submission process:

For All Workshop Facilitators and Panelists:
  • Names, email addresses, and professional affiliations for no more than five (5) Workshop Facilitators or Panelists.
  • Applicants must submit separate proposals to be considered for both a Workshop and a Panel.
  • Should the committee determine that a proposed Panel aligns with the goals of the summit, but may not have broad enough appeal for a large-format panel, we will recommend it be resubmitted as a Workshop “mini panel discussion”.
For Workshops

We hope to accommodate approximately 25-30 unique workshops throughout the day of the summit. In the spaces provided at the Pittsburgh Theological Seminary, Facilitators can expect to hold workshops in classrooms that may accommodate between 20-70 attendees. All workshops must be no longer than 90 minutes, including 80 minutes reserved for presentation with 10 minutes reserved at the end for attendees to complete evaluations for each workshop and Facilitator(s).

Workshop Application Materials and Guidelines

  • Workshop title (approx. 10-12 words)
  • Format, including but not limited to: lecture-style educational presentation, mini panel discussion, affinity group dialogue (i.e., all Facilitators and attendees from a specific identity group discuss racial justice issues and actions relevant for the group), documentary viewing and discussion, organizational/informational session for ongoing racial justice activist groups and events.
  • In-depth description (approx. 500 words). Please include information about 1) the specific topic(s) the workshop will cover, 2) how those topics are directly related to the summit theme, 3) how you will present or navigate those topics with your expected audience, and 4) any content warnings that attendees should be aware of.
  • Blurb (150 words max.) that briefly summarizes the objectives, content, and expected outcomes of your workshop. For accepted workshops, this blurb will appear in the official PRJS 2020 program.
  • A brief description of how you, and any potential Co-Facilitators, are equipped to lead a workshop on your proposed topic. This could include personal background and experience, educational history, professional qualifications and certifications, etc.
For Panelists

We plan to hold two (2) large-format panel discussions on the day of the summit. These large-format panels will take place in the Chapel Auditorium at the Pittsburgh Theological Seminary which accommodates 400 people. Panels must be no longer than 90 minutes total, which includes 80 minutes of discussion and audience questions with 10 minutes reserved at the end for attendees to complete evaluations of the panel and Panelists.

Panel Application Materials and Guidelines

  1. Panel title (approx. 10-12 words)
  2. In-depth description of panel topic(s) (approx. 500 words). Please include information about 1) the specific topic(s) the panelists will discuss, 2) how those topics are directly related to the summit theme, 3) why this panel topic has a broad enough appeal to engage the majority of summit attendees, 4) how panelists will present or navigate those topics with the expected audience, 5) how each panelist will make a unique contribution to the discussion that offers differing–and, potentially opposing–viewpoints on the topic, and 6) any content warnings that attendees should be aware of prior to the panel.
  3. Blurb (150 words max.) briefly summarizing panel content and introducing each panelist and their background and qualifications for discussing the panel topic. For accepted panels, this blurb will appear in the official PRJS 2020 program.
  4. A brief description of how each panelist is individually equipped to discuss the proposed topic. This could include personal background and experience, educational history, professional qualifications and certifications, etc.
  5. A list of at least three (3) potential Panel Moderators who will serve as a timekeeper for panelist remarks and the panel overall, ask directed questions for panelists to address, and remain non-partisan throughout the panel discussion. The Panel Moderator MAY NOT be one of the Panelists. As above, a brief description of the Panel Moderator(s) qualifications must be provided.

Please submit your proposal no later than 11:59 pm on Friday, November 15, 2019. 

Proposals will be reviewed and evaluated on a rolling basis. The committee expects to contact applicants with proposal decisions on November 22, 2019. Pending facility availability and programming needs, the committee will consider applications after the November 15 deadline provided that we receive advanced notice of your intention to submit a proposal and a definite date when we can expect your completed proposal application. There is a HARD deadline of Friday, December 6, 2019 for all proposal revisions, if requested by the planning committee, to allow for proofing and printing of the program book and timely public release of the final PRJS 2020 program.

Should you have any questions, please email the PRJS Workshop and Panel Committee at [email protected] with the subject line:

“PRJS 2020 Workshop/Panel application question”.

Thank you very much, and we look forward to your workshop or panel proposal for PRJS 2020!