About the Water and Health Conference
Since its founding in 2009, the goal of the Water Institute at UNC has been to inform the way the world works on water, sanitation and hygiene issues by generating the evidence that drives improvements in both practice and policy. The annual UNC Water and Health Conference is intended to advance these goals by creating a widely accessible space where policymakers, practitioners and researchers can gather to review the evidence, interrogate the science and improve old and develop new approaches to expanding WaSH access.
The 2022 UNC Water and Health Conference was a landmark event bringing together stakeholders from over 100 countries around the world with more than 2,400 people registering to attend the week-long event in virtual and in-person format. More than 280 unique organizations and universities were represented.
The 2023 Conference will continue to explore the latest learnings around WaSH. The event will include plenaries, side events, verbal presentations and poster presentations.
- Conference Sessions Overview PDF
- View recordings of 2022 conference sessions
- Information about 2023 Sanitation Workers Research Awards
Writing a Successful Abstract
To present your research in the most effective way, and to increase your chances of having your abstract accepted please refer to the abstract submission rubric.
These criteria will be used by reviewers to select the abstracts for the verbal and poster presentations.
Your abstract should briefly explain the importance and novelty of the research, be accurate and succinct, and readable. Keep it short and to the point (500 words):
- What (i.e., the focus): Clearly explain your idea or question your work addresses.
- Why (i.e., the purpose): Explain why your focus is important.
- How (i.e., methods): Describe how you collected information/data to answer your question.
- Results: Share your results–the information you collected. What does the data say?
- Conclusion: State your conclusion(s) by relating your data to your original question. Discuss the connections between your results and the problem. If your project is still ‘in progress’ and you don’t yet have solid conclusions, use this space to discuss what you know at the moment (i.e., lessons learned so far, emerging trends, etc).
NOTE: To assist you, we have made available all accepted and top-scoring abstracts from the 2022 conference.
Abstract Writing Workshops
The recordings of abstract writing workshops are available now:
Reminders for Submitting Abstracts
- Abstracts must be received by the deadline of April 28, 2023
- Abstracts must be submitted via the online forms
- Abstracts are limited to 500 words
- Title of abstracts is limited to 15 words
- Submissions must include key learning objectives for your presentation. Please include key learning objectives in the ‘Full Abstract Submission’ question on the form
- Submissions must include abstract themes. Please select the most applicable themes to your research.
- Incomplete abstracts cannot be reviewed
- Multiple abstracts submitted on a single study will be rejected
- Plagiarized works will be rejected, and authors will be reported to the abstract review committee
Abstract Review Criteria
- Submissions will be ranked through double-blinded peer review
- Each abstract will be evaluated based on the degree to which it:
- ~~Presents an original argument (not only a descriptive account of a project)
- ~~Offers a clear rationale, intellectual-grounding, and outcome/payoff for the presentation (i.e., “so what”), including practical advice on best practices or tools that can be implemented by people in the community
- ~~Is clear and well written. Abstracts should be free from spelling and grammatical errors. Where appropriate, background, methods, results, and conclusions should be clear. For all abstracts, the topic and key learning objectives should be obvious
- Acceptance will be based on content, available space, and overall program balance.
Abstract Decision Notification
- Notification regarding acceptance or rejection will be sent to the presenting author by email by mid-July 2023, so providing an accurate email address is critical.
- If your abstract is accepted, you will receive an email that specifies whether it is accepted as a verbal or poster presentation.
- You must RSVP by the date specified. Abstracts are withdrawn if your RSVP is not received by the specified date.
Presenting Author Responsibilities
- The first author listed for each abstract serves as the presenting author and as the primary contact for all correspondence regarding the abstract.
- The presenter must be listed as a co-author on the submitted abstract.
- The presentation at the conference must reflect the submitted abstract. Specifically, the abstract title, authorship, and scientific content must match the submitted abstract.