Abstract Submisson Guidelines

The mission of the International Confederation of Midwives is “To strengthen member associations and to advance the profession of midwifery globally by promoting autonomous midwives as the most appropriate caregivers for childbearing women and in keeping birth normal, in order to enhance the reproductive health of women, and the health of their newborn and their families.

The theme of the 2014 Congress to be held in Prague is “Midwives: improving women’s health globally”.  Each day of the Congress will also have a theme. These sub-themes are:

  • Bridging midwifery and women’s health rights
  • Access: bridging the gap to improving care and outcomes for women and their families
  • Education: The bridge to midwifery and women’s autonomy
  • Midwifery: bridging culture and practice

The four main types of presentations are

  • Oral Presentations 
  • Poster Presentations
  • Symposium (A Range of Issues On a Specific Topic) 
  • Workshops

Oral Presentations
Oral presentations are usually delivered by a single presenter in a time-slot of 15 minutes plus 5 minutes for discussion. Oral presentations can be on any topic relevant to the Congress themes and with a focus on research, theoretical debate, innovative/sustainable midwifery practices, or midwives/women’s stories/experiences. The word limit for oral presentation abstracts is 300 words and must meet the criteria outlined below.

Poster presentations
Poster presentations are visual displays of material to be presented and constitute an interactive and communicative medium, usually combining text and graphics information. Posters may be on any topic relevant to the conference themes and with a focus on research, theoretical debate, innovative/sustainable midwifery practices, or midwives/women’s stories/experiences. The word limit for poster abstracts is 300 words.
Posters will be displayed in the Exhibition Hall and for the duration of the Congress. It is expected that presenter should be available at the poster for a designated hour with copies of their poster in order to discuss it with congress participants. Specific information regarding size and mounting requirements will be provided with the notice of acceptance. The abstract must clearly describe the topic/subject and include the aim or rationale for the exploration, methods used, results, implementation processes and an account of why the work is important for educators, clinicians, researchers, women and families, and/or policy makers.

Symposium of related presentations

The symposium is a presentation during which more than three individuals present papers that have a common focus. The symposium, which has a total session time of 90 minutes, may be on any topic relevant to the conference themes and with a focus on research, theoretical debate, innovative/sustainable midwifery practices, or midwives/women’s stories/experiences. Examples of symposium topics include various aspects of a large research project or different approaches to managing clinical problems. The length of a symposium will be 90 minutes. The value of the symposium is that the symposium chair acts as a facilitator assisting the audience to appreciate the commonalities and differences between the papers presented. Unlike ‘stand-alone’ presentations the questions and discussion normally take place at the end with the individuals acting as a panel. 
The group member who takes the role of the chair must submit a single abstract for the entire symposium. The submission must include an outline of the proposed symposium, details of the individual papers and a clear demonstration of the added value of linking these together. In order to ensure that all the necessary information is included the overall word limit for a symposium submission is 1,000 words. This must include details of the individual papers and authors and also the name of the person who will lead the symposium. Where the symposium relates to specific research projects, the criteria applied to all research abstracts will be used in addition to the criteria for judging symposia. 
A workshop is an interactive session facilitated by more than one person, names of whom must be identified. The workshop, which has a total session time of 90 minutes, will allow significant time - at least half of the allocated workshop period, for audience participation, exchange of ideas or developing skills. The purpose of the workshop is to extend both the skills and knowledge of the individuals attending. The workshop may be pitched at introductory, intermediate or advanced levels of activity. Workshops can be based around practical or clinical skills (such as perineal repair, Neonatal / Maternal resuscitation and other obstetric and neonatal emergency interventions) or more abstract concepts (such as campaigning or use of the media). The individual wishing to lead a workshop should submit an abstract (maximum 1,000 words), which makes clear the aims, objectives, need for and focus on how the audience will participate in the workshop session. This should include any specific requirements for interaction that will have an effect on the room layout and the numbers of participants who can be accommodated (i.e. Equipment and room/ desk set up). The Workshop leader should indicate the preferred maximum number of participants. In any case, venues will limit workshop numbers to a maximum of 50 but can be less if preferred.

Field of presentation

Presentations will relate to one of the four following fields:

  • Education
  • Practice
  • Regulation/Policy
  • Research

These fields will be used to allocate abstracts to reviewers with appropriate expertise.

Focus of presentation

Abstracts of relevance to the conference themes can be submitted. The focus of presentations will be one of the following:

  • Research
  • Theoretical Debate
  • Innovative/Sustainable midwifery Practices
  • Midwifery Stories/Experiences

Abstract requirements

Abstracts need to be clear. In particular we want to know why you explored the subject, the approach used, that the method was appropriate, that results are reliable and how outcomes have been implemented. All abstracts must address:

  • ethical implications if applicable
  • external funding implications if applicable
  • aim and rationale
  • description of presentation
  • originality
  • implications for midwifery practice, women and families, education, research or policy as relevant
  • relevance to an international ICM Congress audience

In addition abstracts must include specific information as relevant to the focus of the presentation, and outlined below:


Abstracts may be submitted that discuss empirical research. These should provide a brief background to the research; its aim; method (including sampling issues, when data were collected and approach to analysis); ethical issues; key findings; implications for theory development, education, practice and/ or policy, as appropriate. The research must be completed by February 2014. Abstracts on research in progress will not usually be accepted.

Theoretical debate

These will be papers that address a range of topical midwifery and women’s health issues of interest to an international congress audience. The abstract (and subsequent presentation) must include the aim or rationale for the topic; reference to relevant literature in the field; a clear account of the argument that the author wishes to make; and evidence of the originality of the topic or area of debate. The underpinning theory or philosophy of the argument, and/or the original way in which it is applied should be stated in the paper including, implications for theory development, education, practice and/ or policy, as appropriate.

Innovative/Sustainable midwifery practice

The paper should describe midwifery practice that is innovative and/or sustainable. The abstract must provide a clear description of how the practice is innovative and/or sustainable, including its evaluation in practice; a description of how the practice could be applied elsewhere including implications for the midwifery workforce.

Midwifery stories / experiences

Abstracts may be submitted for presentations based on storytelling about midwifery experiences. The abstract must include the aim or rationale for the story/experiences; a clear account of the story, including the author’s reflections on why this story and its outcomes are important for an international midwifery audience.

Abstract review process

All abstracts will be subject to double-blind peer review by dedicated reviewers with expertise in one of four fields – education, research, regulation and practice. The assessment criteria are available. Where there is discrepancy between reviewer scores a moderation process will be initiated. Appeals will not be accepted.

The Scientific Professional Programme Committee reserves the right to change the theme to which an accepted abstract relates.

Ethical and funding considerations

Each abstract submitter must confirm that:

  • the abstract is their own work
  • it has not been published elsewhere
  • ethical approval was obtained (explanation required if no ethical approval obtained)
  • permission has been obtained for the use of all images and any data not collected by the author 
  • any external funding sources are disclosed


Copying work or ideas from someone else and presenting them as one’s own is plagiarism and is regarded by the conference organizers as serious professional misconduct. ICM trusts its attendees and recommends that if a presentation builds on the work of another, presenters ensure that they reference the intellectual property of others.

Publication of abstract

All abstracts will be published on a CD ROM. Some abstracts may be selected for publication in the International Journal of Childbirth (ICM’s Journal) and authors will be asked to indicate their willingness for their abstract to be considered for publication.

Submission Language

All abstracts are to be submitted in ENGLISH to facilitate the peer review and moderation process. You may have the opportunity to present in French and Spanish if your presentation is allocated to one of the venues that has translation facilities. Participants from non-ICM language countries may have a dedicated room to present in their own language if numbers permit and prior approval is obtained from ICM. Translation to English may be available, subject to agreement with ICM. Please indicate on your submission your preferred language for your presentation, but note that English may be required if your preferred language does not have a dedicated venue.


Abstract Submission Opens December 2012
Deadline for Submissions now extended to 5 April 2013
Notification of acceptance 1 September 2013
Presenter must be registered by 1 December 2013

Online Submission

Once in the online abstract submission please complete the information as required.  You will note that all abstracts are to be submitted in a basic text format; therefore no pictures or advanced formating. Your submission will automatically be limited to 300 or 1000 words depending on the type of abstract. Once your abstract has been sent to us you will receive a confirmation email.  Please ensure that the email address supplied during your account creation is correct and operable as this address will be used for all future communication.

Manual Submission

Should you not have access to the internet the SPPC has made provision for you to submit the abstract via fax or email.

PLEASE NOTE: All abstracts submitted by either method must be typed and clearly legible. Handwritten submissions will not be accepted.

In order to submit your abstract manually, please:

  • E-mail the document and your contact details to abstracts@midwives2014.org
  • Fax the document and your contact details to +420 261 174 307

Once received, you will be sent a copy of the transcribed abstract to confirm that all details have been copied correctly.  Only once you have agreed that all details are correct will your abstract be submitted to the committee for review.

All accepted abstracts and authors’ confirmed contact details will be published in the congress programme after authors have registered to attend the congress.

If you have any queries please email: abstracts@midwives2014.org.


For step-by-step instructions on submitting an abstract online go to the Submisssion walkthrough page.


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