Two BISA conference ambassadors at the help desk in Glasgow

Joining instructions and FAQs

On this page you will find the following sections as you scroll:

  • Joining instructions
  • Venue information – maps and rooms
  • Information about Birmingham
  • FAQs including technical questions
  • Conference role information
  • Withdrawal and refund information

Joining instructions

Once you arrive at Centenary Square in Birmingham you will need to go straight to the registration desk in the Hyatt Regency hotel, Bridge Street, to collect your name badge. Name badges will be required for entry to some of the conference venues, so it is essential that your wear your lanyard with the name badge attached at all times. This includes the conference reception at Birmingham Library on Wednesday 5 June. The registration desk will be open from 8am to 6pm on Wednesday and 8.30am to 6pm on Thursday and Friday.

Timings and locations of all panels, roundtables and other sessions can be found in the conference programme. There will also be a daily programme of events located near the registration desk.  If you have any questions, please ask the registration desk team or help desk. We will have several conference ambassadors located around the conference venues wearing orange t-shirts who will be able to help.

Maps and rooms

This year’s conference is located across five buildings on Centenary Square. To help you find the right building and room please download the area map and list of rooms/locations below.

Accommodation and travel

All information about accommodation and travel can be found on our transport and accommodation page.

What else is there to do in Birmingham? Where can I get my morning coffee? Which restaurants would you recommend?

Our fantastic conference team have put together a ‘Birmingham survival guide’ covering all these questions and more.



Where can I find the conference programme?

Click through to view the programme. You can also generate and save or print your own personalised schedule.

How long will it take to move between conference venues?

All five conference venues are located on a square. As soon as you leave one venue you’ll be able to see the others. It will take between one and five minutes to walk between venues, however you should also leave time to find the correct room at the next venue if you are unfamiliar with the layout. There are downloadable maps/room information further up this page.

I'm presenting or speaking at a panel, roundtable or other conference session, do I need to arrive early?

If you’re an active participant in a conference session, please try to arrive a minimum of 10 minutes before the advertised start time. This will allow you time to meet the other participants and the chair, and to ensure your equipment is working, such as any PowerPoint slides you wish to use.

Can I use PowerPoint slides, video, music etc?

Each room at the conference will be equipped with a screen, projector and HDMI cable. You will need your own laptop or similar. There will be wifi throughout the venues. For peace of mind, you may wish to bring any files or PowerPoint slides on a memory stick in case of disruption to the internet connection. You should also upload them to your emails or another cloud-based area you can easily access.

Please note that facilities provided for connecting to laptops are limited to HDMI cables. If your laptop doesn’t have a HDMI port, or you are using a Mac, then you will either need to provide your own cable, or arrange to share with another panellist.

If you wish to play music or a video you will be limited to your computer’s own speakers in most conference rooms, unless arranged in advance.

Will there be anyone who can help me if I have technical issues while presenting?

Speak to one of the volunteers in orange t-shirts should you require help and they will direct you to the correct person. However, we recommend you set up and test your PowerPoint slides or other materials prior to your panel session to make sure they work.

Do the conference venues have wifi?

Yes, all conference venues have wifi. The details are as follows:

  • At the Hyatt, select Hyatt wifi and accept the T&Cs
  • At the Exchange you can either connect to Eduroam as you would on campus, or sign in to UoB Guest wifi using your email address and name
  • At the Library, select Visitors_Library_of_Birmingham
  • At the Symphony Hall, select B.Music wifi or ICC wifi in the foyer areas.

Is there an area where I can sit and work whilst I’m not attending panels?

Yes, in the Hyatt Regency there will be several tables and chairs in the exhibition hall, as well as seating in various common areas on the ground floor. In Symphony Hall foyers there will be tables and chairs from 10am to 3pm on Wednesday and Thursday (one level only on Friday). There is also booth seating on each level and a selection of casual seating on the Circle Foyer for over 100 people. Additionally, there are cafes located in the ICC, The Exchange and the Symphony Hall.

If you wish to work quietly there are working spaces available in Birmingham Library.

Where can I network or meet people?

There are scheduled refreshment and lunch breaks each day (see conference programme). The refreshment breaks will be in and around the exhibition hall at the Hyatt Regency. Lunch on Wednesday and Thursday will take place at the Symphony Hall. Lunch on Friday will take place at both the Hyatt and Symphony Hall. Please head to whichever venue is closest to your panel just prior. The conference reception at Birmingham Library on Wednesday evening is also a good place to meet other delegates. If you are part of a working group, they may be holding a meeting or AGM (see our featured events page for more details).

I want to see a particular speaker, how do I find out when/where are they speaking?

The easiest way to find a particular speaker is to find them on our delegate list which is alphabetical. Alternatively, you can go to the conference programme and use ‘Ctrl’ plus ‘f’ to open a search box where you can type a name or other keyword.

Is a prayer room available?

There is a prayer room at the ICC. The prayer room is located on Level 3, along the main corridor as you enter via the Brindleyplace Level 3 entrance. 

Is a nursing area available?

There is a private room for nursing at the Exchange. Please ask any member of staff there for access. More information is available in the download at the end of this section.

Is there an all-gender toilet?

There are individual ungendered cubicle toilets on every floor of the Exchange, with the exception of the ground floor. The library have also agreed to make their accessible toilets gender neutral for the duration of the BISA conference, and will have gender neutral toilets in the entire space for the conference reception on Wednesday 5 June.

Is there a cloakroom, or somewhere I can leave bags, coats and other items during the conference?

There are no cloakroom facilities at the BISA conference venues, so you will need to find alternative storage for any large bags. Many hotels and B&Bs allow guests to store bags the day they check in or check out. There are also left luggage facilities at Birmingham New Street railway station and in The Bullring shopping mall.

Please download the below document to find out about nursing facilities, access and more facilities available at The Exchange.

Conference roles

Please download our handy guide to conference roles, particularly if you are chairing a session.


Extra information for conference chairs

If you’ve chaired panels and roundtables before, you’ll know that one of the key responsibilities of the chair is time management. It’s essential that all sessions finish on time at BISA 2024 to avoid disruption to the next block of panels and roundtables and to ensure there is sufficient time to travel between locations. Please download and read the guide to conference roles above before chairing your first session.

If you’ve not chaired a panel or roundtable previously, you may wish to find out more about the role. We recommend the following blog posts.

Should I get in touch with the speakers for the event I’m chairing in advance?

Please do! On a practical level, this allows for speaking time limits and order of appearance to be decided ahead of time, while also facilitating introductions before the conference, which helps panel participants when they prepare their presentations in advance.

Do I need to say anything specific to kick off the event?

Please let everyone know the title of the panel/roundtable so that people are sure they are in the correct room.

Withdrawal and refunds

I want to withdraw from the conference and have not registered/paid to attend. How can I do this?

If you can no longer attend the conference, please email putting 'withdraw' clearly in the subject of the email. We ask that you notify the conference programme chair as early as possible so we may make adjustments to the programme as necessary.

I want to withdraw from the conference but have already registered/paid to attend. Can I have a refund?

You will still need to let us know as per the previous question, however whether you are able to claim a refund is dependent on when you registered. Our policy, as stated at the point of sale, is that you may claim a full refund for 14 days following payment. Please email our office: After this period no refunds can be processed.